From April 6 – 11 the NAB Show 2019 took place in Las Vegas. Studio Black Tomato’s head of studio Nick Ford-Young was invited as a guest speaker alongside brand representatives from the luxury travel industry from Myriad, Marriott and the Australian tourist board to share thoughts about the future of video for travel and the investment into this type of content by the tourism industry, media companies and lifestyle brands. The panel focused on helping filmmakers understand the ‘buyers & financiers’ of the industry and give thoughts on how they should approach being successfully hired by companies searching for this type of content.
1. Work with talent who has a cultural relevance to your brand
Finding the right talent or agency that can accurately translate your brand message and style can be a challenge. Both Myriad and Tourism Australia favour partnering with agencies who use culturally relevant talent to create content and believe that video producers should have an intrinsic DNA match with the destination.
Brands in the luxury lifestyle space should favour talent who are well-travelled, but more importantly that can use their external passions on top of their skillset to tell stories through video. Culture is fundamental and considering what the talent add to the mix is important – whether stand-up comics, artists, talent with background in media buying, hospitality… Studio Black Tomato need talent with skillsets that go beyond just travel. People’s insights into filming can often work nicely fitting into how they work, which is more about a cultural connection than actual travel videos.
2. Build a fan base for the content you are putting out
There’s a reason you eagerly await the release of the next episode of your favourite TV show – you are a fan of the content. If brands are able to replicate this sentiment with their own content, half the job is done. Ultimately, it’s about connecting with the audience, particularly through storytelling, something that is easily achievable in the luxury and travel industries where brands excel at this.
Marriott’s approach around their content this year will be just this, creating brand films and other videos on a consistent basis. By doing so they hope to achieve building a fan base for the brand by making an emotional and cultural connection with audiences through beautiful films.
3. Push boundaries and don’t limit yourself to what ‘the norm’ is in the industry
Innovate! Don’t be reluctant to use new formats of video, even if they aren’t widespread yet, such as vertical video or interactive video. Blackwire is an interactive storytelling video service, which places seamless ‘calls to action’ within video, adding huge opportunity to be informative, drive bookings, increase dwell time and amplify brand interactions. This cutting-edge technology allows the viewer to fully immerse themselves in a fun, informative, engaging, trackable way that ultimately drives conversions.
“How long should my video be?” is a question that is often posed. They don’t necessarily have to be short. Brands should create videos that resonate with their audience and not limit themselves to the 1 minute Instagram format, especially as storytelling is so big in luxury and travel. The bottom line is, if the audience has a passion for something, they will watch the content for hours. Therefore finding a way to connect culturally to these audiences is very powerful.
Also don’t be afraid to do something different. Tourism Australia feel that tourism boards always produce the same type of content which relies only on showcasing beautiful parts of the destination. However, a not so obvious approach which stands out is much more impactful. During this year’s Superbowl, they released an engaging video made to look like a movie trailer using humour and given Australian stereotypes to promote their travel destination.
4. ROI is achievable without big media budgets
Is it possible in this day and age to achieve high levels of ROI without having to invest thousands into media spend behind your content? There are two ways of looking at this – the short and long term.
ROI is achievable in a short space of time by allocating large budgets of media spend behind your content, which will ultimately get you views, but not necessarily engagement and retention which is not sustainable.
By producing content with a long-term goal of building a community, ROI will be more measurable. This is only achievable by creating a deep connection with the audience centered around a common passion, culture or by tapping into emotions. The result is long lasting brand loyalty.
To announce their strategic partnership for instance, American Airlines and British Airways highlighted the differences between UK and US cultures around two different passions – sport and cuisine – during conversations between influencers. If brands create content relevant to a certain audience (sports fans, music enthusiasts), the audience will want to watch the video for much longer. Connect to your audience on a deeper level and you will make them want to watch it, and ultimately come back for it.
By pushing the boundaries of innovation, using the right talent with a cultural connection to your brand and building a fan base, ROI is achievable.