An unapologetic look at Hospitality

Entries from February 2011

Youtube for hotels

February 22, 2011 · Leave a Comment

Why would I want to sit through hours of silly cat videos? Another dog on a skateboard?  Or your buddy hurting himself really bad? I don’t even know the guy! When Jackass (the show) is on TV, I change the channel. Why would I want to see the same thing while at my PC?

If that is the state of video-sharing web site www.youtube.com according to you, it might be time to give the it another look. YouTube gets more than 200 billion views a day. The average user spends 15 minutes on the site. Every minute, 24 hours worth of video is uploaded to YouTube. Every minute! So while you have been reading this, another 24 hours of video got added. And you aren’t even at the end of the article yet!

So is it all crap? You bet! 99 percent of it is total rubbish.

Just kidding! It’s just like anything else on the Internet, You take what you can use and throw away the rest. Luckily, YouTube is owned by Google, which means that it has a killer search-engine. I sometimes use YouTube to look for hotels I DON’T want to stay at before booking upcoming travel.

And that of course is where the problem comes in! As with all user-generated content, who is in control of the message? Surely, you don’t want to be THIS cruise-line where the bathroom sinks spew brown/yellow-ish water (it’s hard to argue with a video that got OVER 22 thousand views) and is being called “ghetto” by the creator of the video.

Unlike your web site that will eventually get indexed by the Bings and Googles of the world even if you do absolutely nothing to expedite that process or your SEO, on YouTube you HAVE TO work at it. No video, no search results. That wouldn’t be so bad were it not for the fact that any John Doe with a camera can upload a video. And he might just upload something to put you in a very negative light. If you own a hotel by the airport in San Jose, don’t type “Worst hotel ever” in YouTube’s search box, or you might find a video of (one of) your rooms like the 11 thousand viewers before you.

Not that there is that much wrong with the hotel room in that particular video, but you don’t want to have your name associated with those search terms. The reason why should be totally obvious.

At the very least you should be familiar with videos about your hotel that are already out there. So go ahead, hop on over to YouTube and start searching. Your next step should be to reply to any (both negative AND possitive) videos you find. So go ahead get an account on YouTube. But your best defense against negative publicity on YouTube is to upload your own videos. Just like with any search-engine, there are ways to make your videos come out on top in the search results, but that is a topic for another time (and for someone with more YouTube experience).

Categories: Hospitality · Social