10 Video Secrets to Success for the Tourism Industry

If a picture is worth a thousand words, imagine the impact your destination can make with a video strategy. Videos are simply more engaging than photos! Keep reading to find out tips and tricks to get (or keep) your video presence rolling. Let’s get started.

1. Inspire Consumers to Crave More Information

The tourism industry is very familiar with this strategy. We entice audiences with a quick, comprehensive, emotional video. Perhaps the best examples of this type of video strategy is the Pure Michigan campaign. Once these commercials started playing on televisions and radios across the nation, perceptions of Michigan (especially as a travel destination) began to shift. The commercials provided a quick, yet vibrant picture of the Pure Michigan experience. The key element in every commercial is the encouragement to learn more by visiting michigan.org. These quick, inspirational videos inspire audiences to learn more about the Great Lakes State.

These types of videos can also focus on certain niches such as golf, lakes, skiing. Use these short-form videos to inspire specific audiences to learn more about the details of your destination.

If you have a less-than-two-minute overview video of your destination or niche, you are getting closer to making consumers crave information! If you do not have one of these videos, this is a great place to start a video strategy.

Just be sure to strategically share your video. (We cover this more at the end of this blog!) 

2. Fulfill Their Demand for More Information

Now you have a captive audience who is craving more information! How can you fulfill their demand with a video? TwoSix Digital recommends striking a balance with longer form videos. It seems for years, marketing experts recommended videos be less than one minute. Although short videos still have purpose, we can use long form videos to fulfill our promise to “learn more” about our destination.

Notice how the video example above is nothing fancy. It was clearly created by amateurs, but has over thirty-six thousand views! Nowadays, many people watch YouTube videos at home on their television. Pressing play on a twenty minute long video is akin to watching a TV show.

Remember, there is no harm in sharing this valuable content made by other YouTubers. If you find a valuable long form video on your destination, share it with your audience.

For more examples of longer form videos, check out this profile on Visit Seattle’s SeattleTV project!

3. Unbox Your Destination

“Unbox videos” are the most popular type of videos on YouTube. What secrets about the culture of your destination can you reveal to your audience before they visit?

More and more people want to travel like a local. Visitors do not want to stick out like sore thumbs, and some are too shy to ask locals for advice. Provide valuable information with every video to make a visitor more comfortable in your destination.

This video by Visit Lake Charles on “How to Eat a Crawfish” has nearly two million views! Eating a crawfish is tricky business, and this helpful video is relevant to those who have never tried this culinary feat. Another great example is the recipe series by Louisiana Travel.

Remember, you know your destination better than anyone else. Tell us all the exciting details in your next video!

4. Keep it Simple

Not every video needs a camera crew and a thousand dollar budget. Check out this great video by Frankenmuth on the Bavarian Belle boat tour! This fifteen second time-lapse video organically generated over seven thousand views, and is so much fun to watch. Don’t miss the little moments that make your destination special. These can be captured on your smartphone, and create some serious excitement on your page. We’ve seen this work time and time again!

Here are some more examples

5. Try Going Live!

Nature is a captivating subject for going live. In this example, Indiana Dunes Tourism took advantage of the moment before a storm. This two minute long video generated over seven thousand views, and gives viewers the feeling they are standing along the angry banks of Lake Michigan! Other great examples of going live is Travel Oregon’s “Moments of Zen”, and Buffalo Niagara’s Water Bikes of Buffalo video.

Find a beautiful nature scene, and go live! Be sure to set up a tripod for a stable video, and let the beauty unfold.

6. Add Captions to Videos

This best practice makes your videos more accessible, and successful. 85% of Facebook video is watched without sound, making this a necessary part of your video strategy.

Walt Disney World simply added captions to their video to make it more engaging. This is useful for viewers who may not want to crank up the volume, or are hard of hearing.

Here’s instructions on how to add captions to Facebook, and YouTube. Pretty simple!

7. Think Long Term

Evergreen content is a video, blog, or landing page that is relevant any time of the year (and for years to come). If your DMO is hiring a video production company, think long term, and capture evergreen content.

Explore Branson’s mural time-lapse video will be relevant for decades! After visitors stop by to take a selfie under the artwork, they can see the method behind the magic in this quick video. The mural video can also be shared on Explore Branson’s Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest pages time and time again. Additionally, the video can be embedded into landing pages about the local arts scene. The possibilities are endless.

Another great example is Myrtle Beach’s video on crabbing! Think longevity and usability when creating your next video.

8. Create a Strong Call to Action

This is an easy one to forget, but is extremely important. Your video has engaged someone to press play, and watch until the very last second. Now what? You have to ask yourself what you want your audience to do next, and include this information in your video. Notice how Visit the USA includes website information to Chicago’s Fashion Outlets, the Chicago CVB, and Visit the USA. They have also included their hashtag to encourage usage on social media.

Take this idea a step further, and add your call to action at the beginning of your video! For whatever reason, you may lose your audience halfway through the viewing process, and your most important piece of information is at the very end. The ultimate lesson here? Include a call to action in every. single. video.

9. Extend the Story

We included a screenshot of this necessary part of the process. Every YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter video post allows you the option to extend the story by including a robust description, and a LINK. The link is the most important part.

Websites are the tourism industry’s bread and butter. Every content marketing effort should aim to drive traffic back to your website to move potential visitors further down the pipeline.

Take a look at this screenshot, and notice how Travel Wisconsin included a link to their Fall colors page in their Fall colors video! This is how it’s done. Provide a link with more information on the subject of your video. This small action will generate high quality visitors to your website.

Our recommendation: Take a look at your YouTube page. Analyze all of your descriptions, and identify a website link that can be included to provide more information and drive traffic!

10. Don’t Post and Bail!

Now for the most important portion of a video strategy, and yet, one of the most overlooked. You put out an RFP for a video production company, you find the perfect team, you host countless brainstorming sessions, organize tons of site visits, wait patiently for the final product, and receive an amazing video to post on YouTube! Now what? Now you have to share this video. Share it everywhere, like Pure Michigan does!

Tweet it, Pin it, embed it, upload it to Facebook. Get it out there. It’s always such a shame to see tons of video content in a YouTube vacuum. You must drive awareness to these awesome pieces of content by sharing them whenever possible. Recently, TwoSix Digital published a blog about generating web traffic using The Five Rule. Apply these same principles to sharing video!

The same idea works with simpler videos captured on your smartphone! Extend the life of your videos, and get the most out of the content by sharing it as much as possible.

Last, but certainly not least, don’t forget to track the performance of your videos. Facebook and YouTube provide great insights.

Do you think you are sitting on a goldmine of video content, but don’t know how to mine it? Consider signing up for TwoSix Digital’s Tactical Content Planning Program. We will analyze your video content and develop ways to draw more attention to your video efforts.

BONUS TIP: Make Gifs!

Twitter LOVES gifs. Instead of using stock gifs of Chuck Norris or kittens, make gifs out of your YouTube videos by using Giphy’s online gif maker. Indiana Dunes made this quick gif by using one of their YouTube videos.

Share original gifs on Twitter and watch your engagement soar.

Thanks for reading! Do you have questions about your DMO’s video strategy? Hit us up on Facebook or Twitter. Also consider signing up for Coaching and Consulting with TwoSix Digital, so we can provide you with ongoing support!