The lodging industry has seen significant adoption of online video marketing because most consumers want to see and experience as much of the hotel as possible before booking their lodging online. As search engines have fully embraced Universal Search and are showing results from online videos, it is more critical for hotels to have online searchable videos – the key being “searchable.”
The value of video for hotel optimization
Video offers tremendous potential for those in the hotel industry. They can be used to provide customers with an introduction to the hotel’s potential and its offerings. They will see the rooms they might stay in, get an up-close-and-personal look at any amenities, and they can receive previews of the hotel restaurant that will help them feel as though they are sitting at the table.
The videos can also help to build relationships with customers, such as giving them a ‘behind-the-scenes’ look at different areas of the hotel or interviews with leaders of the brand. Customers can also receive previews of some of the famous landmarks and tourist sites that the hotel’s area can offer, encouraging customers to come and visit.
For brands to be able to take advantage of the wealth of possibilities offered by video search for hotels, however, they need to make sure their videos can be easily found.
Helping your videos gain visibility
The web page where you are posting your video should have search engine optimized content, meta-data, RSS, etc for engines to crawl your page easily. You also want to make sure you upload a video sitemap for your video.
Google reports that you can add a video sitemap to your existing sitemap or create an independent sitemap. In either scenario, your sitemap helps the search engine see the video. Although search engines have become very smart and sophisticated over the past two decades, they still cannot watch videos.
That means that unless you take the time to pair the video with relevant keywords, create contextual content for the page where the video lives, and use the sitemap to help Google understand the video, the search engine might not accurately understand the content on the page.
In addition to optimizing the videos for your own website, you also want to take advantage of the many opportunities for video marketing across a variety of different platforms. For example:
- You can upload videos to YouTube. After Google, YouTube is the most popular search engine. People watch hundreds of hours of videos on the platform every day. Since YouTube is owned by Google, the videos hosted on the platform can also appear on the search engine results page for relevant queries. Therefore, it can benefit organizations greatly to build up a strong following on YouTube. Make sure each video has the appropriate tags and description so it can be easily understood, ranked, and displayed at the opportune times.
- Social media has also incorporated video in a number of different ways. You can stream live, for example, creating broadcasts that reach your followers. This can give you the chance to open yourself up to interview questions or to take followers on a live tour. Videos can also be pre-recorded and shared on social media to help the video gain traction and attention.
- Videos can also be incorporated into emails. When used in email, they increase the open rate and click-through rate, demonstrating clearly the draw that video has for customers.
Video offers brands across industries, including those in hospitality, the tremendous potential to engage with people and begin building relationships. Customers get the chance to see and hear the products and services that interest them more personally, making it easier for them to confidently make their purchase.
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