People process visual information very well. This may be the reason that marketers believe that Internet users will get the majority of their online content by video and not text within a few years. Even though marketers can find plenty of distribution channels for hotel video marketing campaigns, these channels have grown increasingly competitive. In addition, producing and distributing content costs money. That’s why it’s important to understand video marketing ROI and how to get the most out of your investment.
Enjoying great returns from hotel videos takes more than just creating great videos. To learn more about improving ROI for hotel video marketing campaigns, we spoke with Naike Romain, a product marketing specialist for Wistia, a platform for video hosting and marketing.
Listen to our podcast below (15 minutes), and share your thoughts with us directly in Soundcloud or in the comments below. You can access a full transcript of the podcast here, or read below for a summary of our discussion.
How to improve your video marketing ROI
The rest of this post summarizes the main points of our article with Naike Romain. To learn more about Wistia, you can visit this page for an overview of Wistia features.
Define the video goals and measures of success. Creating a great video won’t be enough to maximize returns. It’s also not usually enough to just create that video and post it on a website. It’s important to begin by deciding what the video is supposed to accomplish. After that, it’s much easier to create the video, figure out how it should get distributed, measure its success, and optimize the video marketing process.
Set the video’s goals first: Before composing a script, the first step needs to be development of a clear goal for the piece. In this way, a video is no different from any other kind of content. For example, marketing videos need to contain a call to action just like a marketing video would. Of course, not all marketing videos are developed only to close sales. For instance, a FAQ or how-to video might help with sales; but the main goal might be to help streamline a process or reduce customer service calls.
What should a video’s goals be beyond simply attracting more prospects or closing sales? These are some examples of the results of effective videos outlined in the interview:
- Enhancing a brand image
- Streamlining the sales process
- Creating an emotional connection
Why are video analytics so important? Once the video’s goal has been defined, it’s important to decide how the success of that mission gets measured. The best way to do this is to make sure that some sort have analytics have ben put in place. These performance statistics help marketers know how well their efforts have fulfilled the video’s goals, and they also provide insight into the direction of future video efforts.
Like anything else, great video marketing campaigns are usually made and not born. Developing a marketing video is a skill that marketers tend to acquire by getting better at defining goals, analyzing results, and constantly optimizing their process. These are some metrics that can help measure success:
- Number of views
- Time spent watching the video by each viewer
- Percentage of people who watch the video after landing on the page
- Conversion rates of viewers who respond to the call to action
Even if a particular video isn’t performing as well as a company hopes it will, it should not be considered a failure if there are proper analytics in place. It should be used as a source of information. In this case, marketers can review the numbers to find out exactly where the problem lies. For instance, viewers may never find the video, lose interest at a certain place, or never convert into prospects. Once this information is known, it demonstrates which parts of the video, distribution process, or call to action need more work.
Putting it all together: According to Naike, the process of creating great video marketing campaigns is very often iterative. By having clearly defined goals and continuously trying to optimize the customer’s experience, video marketing campaigns may evolve over time.
Examples of great hotel videos
The previous section could have applied to creating marketing videos in many different industries. Hotel videos may be similar to marketing videos for other companies, but they are also unique. Because videos can make great emotional connections, there are dozens of ways to use them to attract customers. Not only can a hotel’s guests see exactly what they will get at a certain hotel, they can also offer a view of surrounding attractions.
Video helps if potential customers are just trying to decide upon a specific hotel or conference venue, or even if they are still trying to decide upon their eventual destination. It’s also helpful to design different videos for vacation, business, and convention prospects. All of these different kinds of guests may base their choices partly upon price, but they also consider value and the experience they are likely to have at the hotel and in the surrounding area. Videos can be used to connect on both logical and emotional levels. If viewers can watch past guests having a really great time in the hotel and surrounding areas, they can imagine themselves having a great time too.
These are some specific examples of hotel marketing videos to consider:
- Property and room tours
- Insider tips for nearby destinations
- Highlight booking packages
One new technology that’s popular with all sorts of property marketers, including those for homes, apartments, and hotels, is 360-degree video. With this, it’s possible to provide an experience that’s almost like virtual reality. That way, potential customers can really imagine their experience when they check out the rooms, restaurants, swimming pool, and other hotel amenities and surroundings.
Running a hotel video marketing campaign
Like any other content, videos are used for inbound and content marketing. With inbound and content marketing, one primary goal is to make sure that videos get found at the right stage of the buyer’s journey. Distributing that content to the right audience often challenges marketers as much as producing great content. Besides just posting content on a company website, it’s usually smart to post at least some content on other platforms.
For social networks and video sites like YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook, the goal should be to move buyers along to the main website or to try to convert these viewers into leads. You obviously don’t just want to have most viewers only viewing your content and moving along to some other Internet distraction.
These are some tips you can use to help improve your hotel video marketing ROI on your next campaign:
- Consider short video teasers to post on social sites that can help bring more visitors in to the main sales funnel: your hotel website.
- Embed calls to action and even links to lead forms inside of your video.
- Check your analytics to see where you can improve your campaign; video analytics tools can help you to understand where people are most engaged or where they stop watching.
Naike doesn’t suggest uploading all content to other platforms. It’s better to use these platforms as places to mostly upload teasers that will attract visitors back to the main website where it’s easier to track users and capture leads. The point is to take advantage of the population of people that visit these social and video sites and to capture them as prospects as quickly as possible.
Enhance video conversions with marketing automation
Ideally, it would be great if marketers could take every potential customer and lead them by the hand through a customized buyer’s journey. There actually is a virtual way to do this. Marketing automation tools such as Hubspot and Pardot can and should integrate with lead systems. Once Internet visitors or viewers have demonstrated interest in a particular kind of offer, these tools can provide them with customized content that is mostly likely to provide those particular people with valuable information and help close a sale.
The importance of iteration in your hotel video campaigns
Hotel video marketing needs to be considered an iterative process that can always be improved by using past experiences as information. Use video analytics data to better understand how potential guests are responding to your campaign, and use that to improve elements of your campaign step by step.