On this blog we like to think we’re pretty good at giving you information and advice on how best to use your shiny new DSLR camera to make the most of your photography. Using the tips we give, you could very easily go around your hotel and get some fantastic shots which you can then pop on your website to entice new customers. In fact, the Internet is chock full of websites that offer help and you can always find someone willing to give you a hand.
However, at some point you have to consider the time and effort you need to put into such an endeavour. You are probably a hotel owner or manager, you probably have a hundred and one things to do today, is it really worth your time to also be the hotel photographer?
Those that run the largest hotel chains in the country don’t do it, if you want to aspire to be the best, is it really in your interest to do it either?
I recently asked a small hotel manager how long he thought it would take to photograph every room and exterior interest of his hotel and he said he could do the lot in an hour. It wasn’t a large hotel, it was twelve rooms, only four different layouts to photograph. It had some impressive gardens, a small gym and a very impressive restaurant area. I said “OK then, do it and send me the photos”.
A couple of days later I received all the photographs in to my DropBox folder and I started to look through. The quality was “OK” but there were some glaring mistakes that really had to be taken care of. I’d say 5% of them would be usable after some work in LightRoom and PhotoShop, but there were some more that couldn’t be used and definitely needed to be taken again. Here’s a run-down of obvious mistakes:
I decided to give the manager a call:
“How did your stint as a hotel photographer go?”
“I hated it!”
It turns out it had taken him most of the day. When I explained most of the photographs were unusable he admitted he wasn’t surprised at all. I estimate it would probably take a couple of days in post-process to get even the good ones ready. He was a little distraught.
“Can you come and do it?”
If you’re on a really tight budget then by all means, take a phew photographs of your hotel and publish them, but if you’re looking to make the most of the medium, to get more people booking up and to beat your competitors at their own game then there’s really nothing better than a specialised company with experienced hotel photographers to make sure your hotel looks its absolute best.
With so many hotels competing for business, both private and chains, it is important for every hotel to put their best foot forward and stand out from the crowd. It’s also important to make the buying decision an easy one for the potential client and this can be done by taking advantage of technology and organizing a virtual tour for clients to view. This has many benefits that will help occupancy rates as well as sales.
One benefit for virtual tours in the hotel industry is that it saves lots of time for potential clients. For example, a large company looking for hotels to hold a convention would prefer to view potential sites from the office by way of virtual tour. This is much more efficient in comparison to having to physically pay a visit to each site, which is costly on time and resources. By using a virtual tour, a company can view everything about the hotel including amenities, rooms and banquet facilities quickly and act fast on booking rooms for the hotel. This will boost sales and keep the hotel full much more often.
When people are looking to book a hotel, they often begin their searches on the internet. If a hotel has a well maintained website and a virtual tour link available for all potential lodgers, they will be much more visible in the industry. People like to feel comfortable with their accommodations and the best way to give them that feeling is to allow them to get acquainted with the hotel, which can definitely be done by viewing a virtual tour.
With so many travellers moving throughout cities all around the world on a daily basis, it is important for hotels to reach potential customers. Virtual tour access gives the customer a special insight into their accommodations because they can visualize themselves in their rooms. This is a lot different and a lot more personal than reading about amenities from a list and viewing a picture of the property that was taken when the hotel opened, which is what is often found on hotel websites. By offering a virtual tour of a property, the hotel will see higher conversion rates as well as higher sales.