Written By Cris De Souza, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Nexion LLC
As a travel professional in today’s fast-changing environment, it can be challenging staying on top of the latest trends as it relates to social media and the rise of video in modern travel marketing. For many of us as travel professionals, we’re reluctant to adopt video as a part of our marketing strategy because of a fear of the unknown.
Three Common Myths about Video Travel Marketing – Debunked
Some of us think video is TOO EXPENSIVE. Read on to learn how to conquer your fear and learn some unique ways to leverage video in your travel marketing strategy at a surprisingly low cost; some are actually FREE.
More than 70 percent of small- to medium-sized businesses report that video is now their top channel for driving conversations. Many travel agents think they NEED HIGH QUALITY VIDEOS TO BE SUCCESSFUL. According to Fast Company, consumers actually prefer lower quality video with “authenticity” as the foundation for selling goods and services over high quality produced video.
Some of you may be thinking “MY TRAVEL BUSINESS DOESN’T NEED VIDEO” as a part of your marketing strategy. The reality is that 82 percent of all internet traffic will be video by 2021, up from 73 percent in 2016, and 55 percent of people watch videos online every day. More than 500 million hours of video are watched every day on YouTube alone!
Truth: Using video in your travel business is easier than you think.
Five Most Popular Video Types to Integrate into Your Travel Marketing Mix
Many travel professionals feel overwhelmed, and you may be thinking, “where do I begin” or “what kind of videos should I start with?” Good news, we’re here to help at Nexion! The most popular types of video for small- to medium-sized businesses include:
- Explainer videos: “What is river cruising, and why it’s the best of both worlds?” or “Today’s ocean cruising – it’s not your grandma’s shuffleboard vacation anymore” or perhaps “Five items you can’t leave without on your African safari.”
- Product videos: Examples can be “Join me on a virtual tour of the five-star, all-inclusive Grand Velas resort in Cabo San Lucas” or live streaming your next ship tour during Cruise3Sixty or CruiseWorld and broadcasting to your clients.
- How-to videos: Examples would be “how to pack a men’s suit” or “how to expedite your passport renewal with less stress.”
- Testimonial videos: Examples can be asking your clients to do a Facebook Live from their vacation thanking you for being their travel agent or sharing how you made their vacation memorable and special.
- Just for fun videos: Examples can be sending a “video-gram” to your clients thanking them for their business or perhaps a “happy birthday” or special occasion video message to your clients or prospects.
Check out this video from Nexion Sales Manager Karlen Okamura:
Five Video Travel Marketing Best Practices
Now that you know the types of videos that will get you the most traction with your prospects and clients, let’s explore the “how” with some best practices you can incorporate into one of the video types described above to bring in more sales and drive more loyalty with existing clients:
1.Keep it short and sweet. More than half of all videos are under two minutes in length. With the exception of LiveStream, keep your videos short to maximize viewership. Videos under two minutes retain 95 percent of their viewers; when the length increases to five minutes, viewership drops to 52 percent.
2. Personalize, personalize, personalize. The average retention rate of videos is 35 percent higher than non-personalized videos. Take advantage of special occasions with clients and prospects. Use a simple white board with a personal message written with a Sharpie to attract attention.
3. Hump day is best. Video viewership is highest mid-week with Saturday and Sunday being the lowest. Broadcast and send out your videos during the week versus over the weekend to maximize viewership.
4. Match the video type with the right marketing medium
For your travel agent Website, you’re better off featuring explainer videos and customer testimonials.
Social media responds best to explainer and product feature videos.
Email is better aligned with explainer videos and a tie between customer testimonials and how-to videos.
Sales conversations perform best with product features and explainers.
5. Let your brand, personality and passion shine through. Remember, people want authenticity, and you want your video to be memorable. At Nexion, we take celebrating the holidays seriously. Take a look at our Halloween member town hall.
Part 2 of Leveraging Video to Grow Your Travel Tribe will take a deep dive into the practical tools you can use with “one or two clicks” from your desktop and just a couple of “taps and swipes” from your smart phone at little to no cost. We look forward to connecting with you to continue the conversation, and help you increase your travel sales and increase client loyalty and retention by making video part of your travel marketing strategy!