There is no denying the power of YouTube. With over 1.8 billion users, YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world and has drastically changed the way media is consumed.
The average user's attention span has been steadily dropping due to the overwhelming amount of content available. This has made content creation more difficult for hoteliers looking to use YouTube as a marketing platform, but with the right video, it can still be advantageous. So what kind of videos can hotels make to showcase their property, without losing their audience?
The first step in creating a great video is determining its goal and how it will tell the hotel's story. If the property has recently gone through renovations, a video announcing the completion and showcasing the newly refurbished areas is a great way to generate a positive image of the hotel. To determine what to highlight, look at the hotel reviews. If guests are raving about the pool or restaurant, creating a short video around that can have had a significant impact on guests looking to book. At the end of these videos, there needs to be some form of a call to action to help generate traffic to the hotel's website or YouTube page. Guests who find the videos on YouTube will need an easy way to navigate to the hotel's website without having to return to Google or another search engine, so including a URL in the description or an annotation link will keep the guest away from the OTA's PPC campaigns and ads.
YouTube's reach and international user bases allow hotels a unique opportunity to reach a much wider audience. If a hotel hosts a lot of international travelers or is looking to attract more, their videos should take advantage of YouTube's Closed Captioning features to translate their message into other languages. If there is a specific region being targeted, doing some research into their cultural values can help to shape the video to be more appealing and avoid any accidental cultural faux pas.
Content is critical for these videos and should be made to represent the hotel best and the guests it wants to attract. Business hotels may take a more serious approach, while leisure properties and resorts may adopt a more playful and relaxing feel. The purpose of these videos is to get them in front of as many potential guests as possible, directing them to the site and encouraging more direct bookings.