The forecast is video will account for the “overwhelming majority” of Internet traffic by 2021. It’s not surprising, either. Consider your most recent Web search: it’s likely you saw multiple video links almost constantly. What does this mean for hotels? More importantly, how can independent hotels leverage video marketing content to improve guest engagement, secure more direct bookings and increase repeat visits?

Just how impactful is video?

During 2014, Forrester Research found just 60 seconds of video marketing content was equally as influential as 1.8 million words of copy.

Four years later, and YouTube’s continued dominance of the Web (consider these statistics) proves that the potential audience for video marketing is not diminishing. If you want further proof of the impact of online video marketing, then look no further than Facebook, which generates more than 500 million video views every single day via its platform.

This means your guests (both existing and potential) will be accustomed to viewing video as they use the Web and social media, and if your hotel isn’t participating and delivering them similar content, then it won’t be very visible.

Some video marketing ideas for hotels

There is good news for the independent hotelier: video marketing is highly accessible and doesn’t require a large marketing budget to be utilized effectively.

Even if your budget is simply the use of your own smartphone and a few hours of your time, you can generate in-house video marketing content that will capture the imagination of guests.

Inspiration, however, is a bit more difficult to find, so here’s some video marketing ideas for your hotel to get you started:

  • A behind-the-scenes glimpse. People love to see behind businesses’ closed doors, so record ad-hoc interviews with staff and show how they prepare for events, rooms and weddings.
  • Launch events. If you’re opening a new restaurant, spa or a number of refurbished rooms, then use video to show what’s new at your hotel. Live video often works best for these additions and/or improvements, and most social platforms enable you to stream easily via your smartphone – for free!
  • Guest testimonials. You could simply wait for great TripAdvisor reviews to appear for your hotel…or you could proactively seek fantastic guest video testimonials. Offer guests an incentive to “phone in” their reviews of your hotel via video, and you can upload the best to your Website and social media pages!

To go pro or in-house?

As I mentioned above, anyone can benefit from video marketing if they have a modern smartphone, YouTube account and a bit of inspiration, but bear in mind the following before you dive in wholeheartedly.

First, you’ll need to schedule a considerable amount of your time to practice, film, edit and publish content, therefore, you must ask yourself honestly if you can spare the time.

Second, when rushed, in-house video marketing efforts often lose their homemade appeal and look rather amateurish. For that reason, and if you’re serious about video marketing, it pays to engage with an experienced digital marketing partner.

Most important – have fun with your video marketing efforts; it’s one of the most enjoyable forms of promotion!