Increasing Hotel Conversions With Rich Media
The use of eye catching imagery in the form of interactive videos, animation, digital slideshows, virtual tours has become an increasingly important factor in driving hotel website conversions. Rich media website images featuring motion invite user interaction and offer hotels exciting new opportunities for directly engaging their guests. Rich media empowers hotels to bring their customers right into the guest experience in a highly persuasive manner. This in turn can result in more favorable booking outcomes and increased hotel revenue.
Utilization of rich media on hotel websites by the hospitality industry is clearly on the rise. According to PhoCusWright’s U.S. Consumer Travel Report Sixth Edition, 40% of consumers watched videos submitted by their fellow travelers during the process of trip planning in 2013. 40% also viewed videos that were produced by professionals. Both figures show an increase of 13% and 10% respectively over the previous year. However, more widespread adoption would undoubtedly benefit both consumers and the entire industry.
Video technology continues to advance at a rapid pace, providing hoteliers new and creative techniques to present their properties to their customers. The ability to now embed interactive controls in their videos allows hotels to truly personalize how website users experience the property. Mobile technology increasingly is the platform of choice for consumers to not only book, but explore their travel preferences before making a decision. Hotel websites and all media presented on them need to be compatible with both smartphones and tablets. Users should find their experience as equally rewarding across all platforms and devices.
Hospitality Rich Media Marketing Strategy
It is vital for any hotel embarking on a new video marketing campaign to first clearly establish what their goals are and how success is to be determined. This of course is necessary before any marketing effort can begin. Some self examination is also required to determine the needs and desires of the hotel’s target guest. Then follow up with video and other rich media that the audience will find compelling and relevant.
Additionally, any videos produced must be hosted and distributed on one or more online channels. The viral nature of both YouTube and Vimeo offer hotels a tremendous place to begin. Linking videos to the website, social media networks, emails, and any other advertising possibilities will drive up viewership while maximizing the likelihood of videos going viral. For the videos to become ultimately successful their promotion must be strategized as well.
In the end, only the hotel can decide if their rich media marketing campaign was a success. Whatever parameters necessary to measure that return on investment must be employed to decide the campaign’s outcome and empower any continued utilization decisions.
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