2015 has been named the Year of Video Marketing. So what, you may ask? Video is not relevant to my resort and we certainly don’t have the budget for it.
But it’s time to think again, says Emily Collins from EVC Marketing Communications, who looks at the growing importance of video and how it is an ideal tool for mature timeshare resorts.
At every TATOC conference delegates ask the same question: how do we encourage the younger generation to visit our resort and become owners?
Well, here’s one answer to that complex question – video marketing. And before you ask, it doesn’t need to cost a fortune and yes, anyone can do it.
First some startling statistics.
- 78 per cent of people watch videos online every week;
- 65 per cent of video views watch more than three-quarters of a video;
- People stay two minutes longer on websites with video;
- Adding a video to your email campaign increases engagement by 200-300 per cent;
- 93 per cent of marketers use video for online marketing, sales or communication; and
- By 2017 video will account for 69 per cent of all consumer Internet traffic.
If a picture paints a thousand words, then one minute of video is worth 1.8 million words - the equivalent of 3,600 typical web pages - according to Dr. James McQuivey, of Forrester Research.
Such statistics confirm that when you use video on a website, you have a powerful tool that not only attracts visitors to your site, but keeps them there.
It satisfies their information and entertainment needs and resorts which fail to include it in their strategies will do so at their peril.
We often hear the importance of content marketing to increase our rankings or encourage visits to our social media platforms. Well, let me make this clear: video is the future of content marketing.
This is especially so for a younger target market that uses video to determine whether the resort will give them the holiday experiences they are looking for.
They trust video. They can see other like-minded people enjoying the resort and know that it will give them the holiday they want. It is naturally engaging and easy to digest.
Video is the perfect format for quickly grabbing the attention of a busy audience. It enables strong storytelling in a short, but memorable, format that viewers can enjoy.
It is even more important when buyers do most of their own research online before ever contacting a resort.
Engage views and they will share the video with others, spend longer on your website and more time interacting with your brand. For any social media campaign, and SEO (search engine optimisation) exercise, video is without doubt one of the best tools in your marketing kit.
But is video suitable for resorts today – even mature, legacy resorts?
Yes, because production costs have fallen significantly and you no longer need to be a technical whiz to use it.
For example: services like Animoto and Stupeflix and applications such as Twitter’s Vine have dramatically increased the opportunity for businesses on a limited budget to get involved.
And videos don’t need to be long. According to research conducted by Jun Group, videos that are 15 seconds or shorter are shared 37 per cent more often than those between 30 seconds and one minute.
So how can video be used?
1 Use video to drive traffic to your website
Search engines like Google love video and, if properly optimised, you can use video to increase visitors to your website.
By using targeted keywords when titling and tagging your videos, creating a number of videos that focus on a different search term and using sites like YouTube, you will increase links back to your site – and improve your natural rankings.
2 Use video to turn a static website it into a dynamic, interactive destination.
A simple promotional video that explains who you are, your offer or a virtual tour of the resort lets visitors see what your physical location is like – and is better than any photograph.
3 Use video to give your resort a personal face
Add a short video from your resort manager to your confirmation emails, include a welcome video to your website, insert profile videos of your resort team and add customer testimonials that communicate the wonderful holiday experience you provide.
4 Use video to engage with customers
Video can be used as an interactive medium to get consumers engaged with, and excited about, your resort.
Start a video contest, ask users to upload videos of themselves when they are at your resort, invite them to embed videos on their own websites and social media.
And by providing regular, quality content on your website, people will return over and over again to see what new videos you’re offering.
5 Use video to stand out from your competition
Web video is becoming more widespread and yet many mature resorts do not use video as a common practice.
If your competitors do not yet use video, set yourself apart by introducing video on your website, promoting your videos on local websites, adding them to any business listings in online directories and allowing viewers to share and embed them.