Industry Update
Opinion Article13 July 2018

Social Media Trend: Race for Creative Tools to Make Dynamic On-site Content

By DJ Vallauri, Founder, President & CEO - Lodging Interactive

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As social media has evolved, we've seen each platform racing to make on-site content more dynamic. GIFs can be added to comments on Facebook, there are interactive stickers for stories, and video is booming everywhere. The last two weeks' worth of social media updates largely reflect this trend, granting hotels and resorts new creative tools to better connect with our audiences.

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Let's take a look at what's new in social media…

Facebook Releases New Video-Focused Features

Facebook has released a handful of new features designed improve its video platform and make it more community-oriented.

These features include:

● New interactive abilities like polling during Live Streaming

● Bringing videos from Pages into the Watch tab

● A new video template that will put videos at the forefront of a brand's Page (though this is still in testing)

● The Android version of the Facebook Creator App

Facebook is also testing out a new Brand Collabs Manager. This tool will allow businesses to discover and connect with creators and influencers who they can establish deals or partnerships.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts

Video isn't going anywhere, so new features to help hotels and resorts get the most out of it are welcome. Take advantage of all video features that are available to you to increase engagement and make your content more dynamic and interactive.

You can apply for access to the Brand Collabs Manager now (though it may take awhile to be accepted). Once admitted into the program, you can connect with influencers who can help you promote your hotel or resort by coming to stay, attending an event at your venue, or even just eating at your on-site restaurant.

Facebook Introduces Info and Ads on Pages

In an effort to improve transparency further, Facebook has launched a new Info and Ads section to Pages. This section will allow any Facebook user to view all the active ads that Page is running through Facebook Ads (including Instagram and audience Network). Users will be able to click on the interactive elements of an ad, like the CTA button, but not see engagement.

Users will also now be able to see any name changes your Page has undergone, along with its date of creation.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts

Your guests having the ability to see your ads and past business information likely won't affect most hotels and resorts. You will want to be careful when you're running special offers that are targeted to exclusive groups, even if it's because they're part of a rewards program or first-time guests. One guest won't like to see that you're offering 10% off to another for reasons they can't discern, so keep an eye on this.

Twitter Rolls Out In-Stream Video Ads to More Advertisers

Twitter has been testing in-stream video ads, and now they're now rolling out the feature to advertisers in 12 countries, including the US, UK, Canada, France, India, Japan, and Australia. These are pre-roll ads, meaning they'll show before the video that your guests are interested in watching.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts

Facebook's mid-stream video ads have gotten lukewarm reception, but pre-roll ads have distinct advantages. With many users being willing to watch a quick ad to get to the content they really want to see, you have a captive audience. Now imagine being able to show that relevant captive audience a quick intro video about your resort or hotel, selling them the adventure of travel or the relaxation of a weekend away.

YouTube is Testing New Creative Suite

YouTube is currently working with select brands to test out a series of new tools that will offer new analytics and testing tools for creators on the platform.

These new tools include:

● Video Experiments, which is a testing tool in Adwords that makes it easier to evaluate the effective of creative aspects of a video ad on its results.

● Video Creative Analytics that evaluates video performance within different audience segments.

● Video Ad Sequencing, which will allow you to tell your brand story in snippets through different ads. The videos will be shown to individual users in a specified sequence to improve storytelling.

● YouTube Director Mix, which is a tool that allows you to create a base version of an ad that can have different text, image, sound, and even video swapped out based on the audience seeing it.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts

Most hotels and resorts won't have these tools for a little while, but they'll be great to have once they're available to everyone. Being able to more effectively test video ads and understand why they are or aren't working will be essential to improved success moving forward.

The ad sequencing will also be a huge development for brands, as the shorter snippets of video shown in sequence will improve consistency in brand storytelling and make the ads significantly more effective as a result. You'll be able to slowly introduce guests to your hotel piece by piece, building brand recognition and increasing the odds that they click over time.

Instagram Launches Music in Stories

Instagram users in select countries can now add music to their Stories. They can choose a song by selecting the Music icon that's found in the stickers section.

Music for stories is only available in 51 countries (though Instagram didn't specify which) and on iOS. Support for Android will be coming soon.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts

Instagram Stories are already fun and can be interactive thanks to features like polling and shoppable stickers. Music takes that one step further. Music is a great way to help your Story stand out from the rest, and it can help you better portray a feeling. A whimsical melody can up the romance of a video of your on-site wedding venue, and a tropical beat could make your sparkling pool that much more irresistible.

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DJ Vallauri

DJ Vallauri is the founder and president of Lodging Interactive. Headquartered in Parsippany, NJ, Lodging Interactive is a full-service digital marketing agency exclusively servicing the hospitality industry for more than a decade. The company provides a portfolio of effective hotel Internet marketing services to hundreds of hotels, resorts, ownership properties, spas and restaurants.

    More from DJ Vallauri

    About Lodging Interactive

    Headquartered in Parsippany, NJ, Lodging Interactive is a full-service digital marketing, social media engagement and reputation management agency exclusively servicing the hospitality industry. The Company provides cost-effective Internet marketing services to hundreds of branded and independent properties as well as management companies, restaurants, and spas.

    commingle:engage, the Company's social media and reputation management division, has established itself as the largest provider of reputation management services for the hospitality industry, handling over 200,000 guest review responses annually.

    Lodging Interactive is an HSMAI Adrian Award winner and has won awards from the International Academy of Visual Arts, Interactive Media Awards, Horizon Interactive Awards, Web Marketing Association, Academy of Interactive & Visual Arts, and Travel Weekly's Magellan Awards have recognized Lodging Interactive as an industry leader.

    The Company's Founder & CEO, DJ Vallauri, formerly served on the Board of Directors of HSMAI's New York Chapter and is a Forbes.com Agency Council contributor. For more information, please contact [email protected], 877-291-4411 or visit the company's website.

    Contact

    DJ Vallauri
    President & Founder
    Phone: 877-291-4411

    Contact
    DJ Vallauri
    President & Founder
    Phone: 877-291-4411
    Fax: 877-833-7375
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