By Blake Ng — 26 Oct 2017
For the first time, join Rezdy and TV and corporate video presenter and producer at Peppercorn Productions and Managing Editor of The Big Bus Tour and travel guide, Adam Ford, as we share real-world strategies on how to harness the power of video as a marketing tool for your tour and activity business.
In this free online workshop for tour and activity businesses, we’ll share effective strategies on how to engage potential customers in a real and emotional way. Learning how to create video will enhance your SEO, increase traffic to your website and result in more leads and bookings. It’s content with superb longevity, and is completely adaptable across all your social channels. Once you have a video there’s so much you can do with it!
You will learn:
This is an exclusive webinar on harnessing the power of video as a marketing tool for any tour and activity business where anyone can learn how to use this exciting medium to sell more tours and more travel to your clients.
The webinar covers four aspects:
For many tour and activity operators, one of the common questions is “Why use video?” What are they key reasons that you should look at when using video as a part of your marketing mix?
Firstly, consider these numbers: there are 1 billion people who are unique visitors to YouTube every month. That accounts to one-sixth of the global population. An extraordinary amount of people which points to the primary reason that people love video.
The global audience are consuming more video than ever before. YouTube attracts 1 billion visitors each month, the global platform also garners up to 4 billion searches per day. Now, admittedly, many will be searching miscellaneous content including cute kitten videos and puppies and so forth. However, many will be also looking for other meaningful content such as tutorials, how-to guides, sales guides, and the like. The reality is that people are highly engaged on this medium and that justifies the need to consider getting involved with it.
Secondly, harnessing the power of video as a marketing tool can build trust. Video allows a visitor to your website to take your product, lift if off the page and engage with it in a very personal way, so much more than text on a page. A visitor who is engaged with your product can view your products via multiple angles through video and consequently, are able to establish a connection with you, the provider, thus building credibility where they will most likely move forward and book your product.
For example, the tour and activity provider Ethical Adventures located in Darwin was able to connect with the online audience as seen in the clip at 00:09:13. Rob, the proprietor at Ethical Adventures, was able to establish trust in his product effectively. Thus, it is encouraged that tour and activity operators who are making a video to consider being involved on screen, generally through an interview scenario.
Notably, not everyone can be as confident as Rob on the screen, but it is you, as tour and activity operators who has the passion for your product, are equipped with knowledge in order to sell the product in the best possible way, and hence, will enable you to build trust with your audience via video.
All businesses, including tour and activity companies are continuously looking for the magic solution to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) on how to rank their website pages as best they can. Video can significantly contribute to better SEO, especially on search engines like Google. The platform has a tab devoted to video as well as having video coming up in the general search results. Favoring pages that have rich content, video as well as podcasts have industry rich content, anything that a search engine can see will add more value to the user experience. So, having rich content like video on your page will lift your ranking and enhance your SEO efforts.
In today’s digital culture, we are always hearing the importance of having an optimized site. Video can be mobile friendly and this can be highly advantageous as it will be easy for users to consume your video on any device, including your desktop, iPads and smartphones.
For any tour and activity operators, there are many factors in the decision making process when deciding to produce a video – whether it be in-house or outsourcing to a video specialist – but it does not need to break the bank. In this section, common myths about video production will be addressed and cost-effective options will be advised.
The first common myth is that video is expensive. Indeed, video does cost money, however, it can be vastly cheaper than what it can be. Do-it-yourself (DIY) video can be a more affordable option than getting a professional production done, but it depends on the style of your product. Ask yourself: What is going to actually work best for your product?
As it commonly known, DIY video can be shot on a variety of devices, including via smartphones and can be edited using the raw footage which can work well with certain types of products including youth products, Eco products and grassroots types of activities. However, it will not work well for a high-end safari for example. So, as part of your brainstorming, you need to work out what style of production is going to work best for your product and to transcend across your key brand message.
If you have limited monetary capacity, there are some more affordable options that can allow you to surface the experience on this particular medium:
The second common myth about video is that branded videos, ones with the brand message to deliver, are just TV commercials. Wrong!
A branded video, like ones that are being described in this webinar, will give the audience the feel it has a message to sell however it is produced in a way that would engage the viewers.
Now, videos that are mentioned here is not a ‘hard sell’, so it is not about you getting on the screen and hammering the viewers with your key selling points. Rather, video is about engaging your viewers by showcasing your key messages and your brand values in a creative way. Thus, every tour and operator must ask oneself, “What is the story that you want to get across to the viewer through your video?”
Using the case example of Rob and Ethical Adventure, there were two stories that were present. One angle was to come and experience the most beautiful parks in Australia, that is, Litchfield National Park, where the key message to the viewer is that the tour would allow viewers to immerse themselves into the amazing landscape, with readily available tools to guide through this adventure. The second part to the story was also taking Rob’s branded messages about sustainable tourism and bringing that notion into the mix. As a result, multiple stories that are well incorporated can effectively engage the viewers in that perspective.
The third myth about video is that the number of views reflect success reflects success. Incorrect! In the case where your video goes viral – that can be great news. If your video has garnered views, that is only one part of the equation. What is far more important is when you are assessing the success of your video through, once again, engagement.
Some questions to consider are: What are people actually doing when they are watching your video? Are they watching the video all the way? When they are encounter a call-to-action, how are they reacting? Are they picking up the phone or sending you an email enquiry? So, how your viewers are interacting with your video is more highly regarded than how many people have viewed your video.
This section will cover how the production process of a video works. Overall, there are three phases:
Notably, there are five main points on these three phases:
One can say it may be the most important stage when starting a video for your tour or activity business. Whether you are producing the video yourself or alternatively, outsourcing the job to someone else, give some thought to your brief, that is, spend some time writing a thorough brief of what you want your video to achieve.
If you are proposing to film a live tour, which is to be encouraged wherever possible, it is wise to keep in mind that filming a tour in action will allow your viewers to get the essence of what your product is about, rather than staging the video with a group of friends.
Whether you have a videographer involved or perhaps a friend shooting some video on the iPhone, ask yourself, what is your role going to be? Surely, your role on the dat will be running the tour as well as driving, commentary and ensuring that all guests are having a great time. Adding to that, you will be going to have some involvement in the production of the video. So, if you are going to be doing an interview, for example, you will need to prepare and organize some time to work out when the interview can take place during the day.
Thus, with a range of roles you will be fulfilling on the day, you must prepare what kind of key messages you want to get across or need to communicate in the video. Many tour operators have turned up on the day and improvise however, this may be ineffective as there has been no preparation.
So you have completed all the steps: compiled the briefing, you have become well prepared and the chances are the videographer is going to deliver something that is close to your desired rate (in the case if you are going to outsource the video production). Subsequent changes beyond will most likely incur extra costs so keep in mind to double check with your videographer. That is the most cost-effective way to handle any changes.
So, the editing is done and the video is ready. How is the videographer or your friend who is editing the file going to deliver the video to you? Today, most producers will use a cloud-based platform called DropBox, where they can drop the file and send you a link via email to access the video. Click on the Dropbox link and it will take you to the video. You can download it on your desktop and your new video is ready to go!
The final and most crucial part is how you can make your video work best for you. It has been apparent that many tour operators have paid large sums of money to produce a video, yet are not making the best use of promoting and optimising their video online. There are a number of ways to help optimise your video for the best results:
So, your video is sitting on your desktop. It may be an .mov or a QuickTime file or whatever the recognized formats may be. There is no good for the video to be sitting on the desktop, rather you need to find a platform for your video. There has been a misconception whether or not you should embed your video on your website yourself so that the only place people can watch is via your website. Another, is one where if you embed onto platforms like YouTube, you will be sending viewers off to that particular platform. However, it may not be quite true because if you embed your video correctly onto your website, people can still watch your video on your website without leaving the site.
It is widely suggested to host your video on platforms such as YouTube as you can make it available across multiple mediums, including your own website. It is a lightweight solution that will not slow your website down. In order to upload a video to YouTube, there are instructions from Google (as Google does own YouTube). Before you start, you will need a Gmail web address. Click “Upload” at the top of the page and before uploading your video, you can modify your Privacy settings as seen in the image below.
Note well, there are three settings. So the first one is “Public,” the second one is “Unlisted” and the third one is Private. “Public” means that your video will be available for everybody on YouTube to look at and it will be available in search results. “Unlisted” means that your video is available for you to use on your website, for example, but it will not appear in YouTube search results. And “Private” means that your video is only available to those people to watch on YouTube, you have a password.
You then click on the video on your desktop. Click Upload and away you go. The video starts uploading to YouTube. At the end of that process, it is really important that you click Publish Now, if you don’t click “Publish“, people will actually not be able to see your video and you will not be able to use it on your website. So don’t just click Upload and then, you know, turn it off or minimize the screen and go off and do something else and forget to actually publish the video at the end of the process. It actually does not take very long to upload the average video, so just keep it open on your desktop. As soon as you see that it has been completed, click “Publish”. Your video will be available for the world to see.
It has been highlighted that over time, people are unable to correctly annotate their videos on YouTube. As a tour operator, this will be an significant advantage – as it is a way to gain a competitive advantage and add an extra layer of detail onto your video.
There are a number of ways to effectively annotate your video to gain higher visibility on the medium:
Using the example of Rob and Ethical Adventures, below is the home page where Rob has embedded the video for his site visitors to watch. Visitors will not be leaving his website as they will still be sitting and watching the YouTube clip on his site. Incorporating texts to the embedded video can allow visitors to engage with the video and available products from different perspectives, as mentioned earlier.
Not only these practices will engage viewers, they also significantly contribute to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), where the rich content on your website can enhance the overall experience on your tour and activity website.
With your new live video on YouTube, you can certainly share your new video on other channels to increase the visibility. There are a plethora of ways to achieve this – here are some of the option you can do: