Video And The Hospitality Industry
Accommodating, luxurious, and current. These are adjectives that have described the hospitality industry for decades. The industry itself depends on constantly keeping up with hot trends that keep hotel guests interested. Social media continues to be a crucial part of hotels’ marketing plans. In recent years, hotels have been integrating virtual reality technology as well.
The hospitality industry adopts new trends quickly, so it’s important for marketers to keep up.
One of the more recent trends includes virtual reality (VR). It’s been heavily publicized within the past few years. Hotels like Marriott have fully embraced VR technology and quickly made it a part of their hotel features.
“For the hospitality industry, VR offers almost limitless potential.” – Revfine
In 2015, Marriott introduced VRoom Service. VRoom Service is, “a first-of-its-kind guest service that allows guests to order inspiring virtual reality experiences in their rooms” (Marriott News Center). Through the VR program, hotel guests can rent out VR headsets for up to 24-hours. They can use programs like VR Postcards — an immersive traveling experience.
Even though VR is a brand new program, it’s not the only progressive marketing tool. Social media has been relevant in the hotel industry for years, but the social trends are constantly changing. That’s one of the biggest factors the hospitality industry is taking into consideration.
Instagram is one of the most widely used platforms in the hospitality industry. The visual components allow hotels to sell an image, rather than just a place to sleep. Trending hashtags like the #Triplegram are successful ways to promote the hotel experience.
#Triplegram posts consist of three consecutive photos posted separately in a certain order that form a full row on the user’s page. These photos follow a strict on-brand aesthetic, often using the same filter and color scheme. Most of these pictures are used to make a panoramic image.
Instagram is also a great platform for publishing video content. The app has made it possible for users to publish videos up to 60-seconds long. Users can take advantage of Instagram-compatible video programs, like Hyperlapse and Boomerang.
Hyperlapse allows users to play lapsed time video that still fits within the 60-second video limit. The Boomerang feature plays videos forwards and then back again in reverse. Sort of like an actual boomerang.
Within the past few months, Instagram has introduced Instagram Stories. Stories are a Snapchat-like feature that makes it possible for users to share without flooding their feeds. Users can draw and place text on to, add filters to, and animate Instagram story videos. These videos appear in a bar at the top of a user’s feed and remain there for a limited 24-hours, like Snapchat. Instagram Stories have reached 200 million users, surpassing Snapchat.
Hotel Indigo posts regularly on Instagram, but the hotel chain recently called up influencer @MissCuriousTraveller to promote their brand through the social media platform. She visits different Hotel Indigo locations around the world and shares her experiences through photos, videos, and Boomerang posts.
Boomerang, Hyperlapse, and Instagram Stories videos are innovative and fun to watch. They catch a viewer’s eye and draw them into the content. They can be great ways for hotels to show different experiences, especially through creating a fun, relatable, and accessible brand image.
Regardless of Instagram encroaching on Snapchat’s territory, Snapchat is still relevant social outlet in the hospitality industry. Snapchat allows brands to showcase their casual side. Two strong Snapchat marketing tools include Geotags and Stories. Geotags are relatively affordable. They can be creatively animated with images and text that promote the hotel location.
Snapchat Stories have been present on the platform for a while. They act as feeds for personal users and promoted brands. Companies like Cosmopolitan Magazine and National Geographic have their own Snapchat Stories on the “Discover” tab. Some stories can also be under the “Featured” section, which mostly includes topical stories like holidays and publicized events. Now, Snap Spectacles have entered the ring as a new story-sharing method.
Snap Spectacles are a real accessory. They are like sunglasses that have a camera in the corners of the lenses. They can record in real time and instantly stream onto a user’s story. The Spectacles are providing brands a unique opportunity to give potential guests a mixed reality-like experience. They film from a personal point-of-view that puts story viewers in a first-person perspective. Hyatt has taken advantage of this new technology as a way of upping their Snapchat game.
The hotel chain launched an international Snapchat series called “World of Hyatt.” World of Hyatt was filmed with Snap Spectacles by Hyatt employees. They record moments in their hotel experiences and then share them on social media. These videos are used both internally, within the company, and externally, shared with common users.
Marriott has combined both influencers and Snapchat to create a promotional video series called “Six Days, Seven Nights.” The series follows Jen Levinson, a popular online influencer, as she travels the globe, staying in different Marriott hotels at each destination. The “snapisodes” are filmed with Snap Spectacles and the traditional mobile device camera, completely unscripted and completely natural.
A huge reason Instagram and Snapchat marketing is so successful is because of influencers. Influencers are a wide-reaching marketing tool. They have an engaged audience, and have to stick to an established brand because of this. This on-brand practice makes them great for promoting a hotel’s specific brand, as both the influencer and company know exactly how to share a post most successfully. Influencers are real, down-to-earth, people followers trust. Reaching that audience can be the push a brand needs to build customer loyalty. And, that goes for everyone, not just hospitality.
Overall, marketing in the hospitality industry will continue to evolve as new video trends arise. We can expect to see much more Instagram and Snapchat video marketing to come from this industry. We can also look forward to more integration with mixed reality in the future. There is no telling what the next hot trend will be, but you can be sure that the hospitality industry will be one of the first to implement it.
Katie Murray is a Marketing Intern for Green Buzz Agency. She reports on the latest trends in Video Production and Video Marketing. She hopes to one day enjoy a weekend getaway at one of these hotels!