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How Hotels Can Use YouTube to Generate Bookings

Video content site YouTube is claiming that more than 1 billion unique users visit its website each month, spending more than 6 billion hours watching videos. This year, Cisco is reporting that 90 percent of all web traffic will be video based; online video users are expected to double to 1.5 billion in 2016, and globally, online video traffic will represent 55 percent of all Internet traffic by 2016 as well. Nielsen has noted that YouTube reaches more U.S. adults ages 18 to 34 than any cable network; this is mission-critical information considering that the Millennial or Generation Y demographic will become the core customer within the hospitality and travel industries over the next five to 10 years. If video marketing is key to attracting attention of hospitality's biggest audience and driving guests to make bookings, why then is video so underutilized by hotels today?
Just as marketers became proficient at using keywords -- and now content-driven marketing -- to maximize search results for their websites, they now need to engage in similar practices to optimize video. The key to turning lookers into bookers is found in delivering creative, yet relevant, content that informs and entertains travelers and prospective guests, and there's no better vehicle to do that than video.
Did you know?
Bookings are 67% more likely to happen when a video tour is available.
Internet shoppers who view your video are an astounding 89% more likely to book.
Today’s Internet user has a limited attention span, therefore video marketing is designed to hook a website visitor in the first few seconds. Video, when uploaded to YouTube and added to the hotel's webpage will help hotel marketers to engage their audience and deliver their messages more quickly and creatively. More videos means more search results; more search results will result in more clicks; more clicks will result in more sales; and more sales delivers more bottom line revenue.
Did you know?
Google purchased YouTube in 2006 for $1.65 billion dollars (and YouTube was just a year old.)
Both Google and YouTube offer tools such as "Google Trends" and "YouTube Videos Keyword Tool" to help hoteliers identify keywords to use in video titles, and a "Google Keyword Planner" which enables hoteliers to plug in a video title to determine effectiveness
Google+ has taken over as the No. 2 social media position from Twitter, and it may replace Facebook as No. 1 in a few years.
Hoteliers should not overlook Google+ as a critical social media outlet if they want to remain competitive. With integration between Google+ and YouTube, comments posted on YouTube about a video are being displayed and viewed across all G+ social groups or "circles," giving the video even greater exposure. The Google/YouTube partnership not only aids search functionality, but hoteliers that link their YouTube channel to their Google Analytics account will obtain additional data about video effectiveness. If the content isn't working, or the keywords aren’t attracting the right eyeballs, marketers can then make adjustments accordingly.
Did you know?
When uploading videos for the first time, careful consideration needs to be given to the file name, title and content description. Titles should be no more than 100 characters and only the first 40 to 60 characters will be displayed. Tags should always be used and feature the hotel and brand name.
Sharing videos across all the hotel's social media channels will increase eyeball frequency and duration. The more "likes" a video has improves its ranking. Therefore, embed your video wherever and whenever possible.
Sound and video quality count in SEO effectiveness. Create links within your video to other videos . . . encourage comments . . . choose syndication whenever possible . . . upload in 1080p HD whenever possible and in TV, Web and mobile formats . . . select thumbnail images wisely; they can boost click-throughs.
Hoteliers interested in video creation but don't know where to start are encouraged to call Lodging Interactive. As a full-service digital market and social media engagement agency, Lodging Interactive can guide hoteliers through the video process and even produce videos for the hotel using its service offering. All videos produced through HotelWebShows by Lodging Interactive are 1080i quality and delivered in TV, Web and Mobile formats. Videos are available in 30 second, 60 second and 90  second lengths, and will include music and graphics.
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