After receiving a huge amount of interest in my recent post on TVtrip (click here to re-visit) I contacted Annika Lucien from TVtrip to find out a little more. Our interview is right here. Look forward to your comments and questions.
Hi there, my name is Annika, and I am VP Europe at TVtrip.com. I’ve worked at TVtrip since it launched back in 2007. I’m in charge of the European sales strategy and business development for those different markets.
Q What is TVtrip?
TVtrip is the leading online hotel video production and distribution. We help increase the visibility of our hotel partners on the net thanks to our professionally filmed video content.
We have filmed over 6000 worldwide hotels and distribute the content to leading OTAs, tour operators, review sites, search engines and social networks. We partner with global chains such as Accor, Starwood, Hilton and Marriot and with local chains and independent hotels as well.
We also offer to our hotel and OTA partner a wide range of technical solutions to display the videos on their websites and increasingly on mobile devices.
Q Your business revolves around the use of video so sell your properties, something that is more and more in demand by consumers. Over the last few years, how have you seen this popularity change?
Today the purchase of travel arrangements on the Internet is simple and accessible to everyone. But often lacks the right information at the right moment which makes it challenging for the end user to choose the right property. TVtrip was created to help consumers get a true, unbiased idea of a hotel or destination before they actually book their trip. We like to describe TVtrip as the video Tripadvisor for hotels in key cities.
We were convinced that video would quickly become a prerequisite to sell online. It was only 2 or 3 years ago that video was a “nice to have” on a travel site. Today 97% of internet users agree that travel sites should contain more video.
Q How are all the videos collated? By hotels themselves or by a TVtrip team?
All videos are produced by TVtrip. We recruit professional cameramen in each city. The editing is centralized in order to guarantee a unique format and a quality of the videos.
Q How has business been over the last 12 months?
Business evolved very positively over the past 12 months. We managed to broaden our position in the European markets and had a very positive development in the US thanks to partnerships with major chains like Marriott, Wyndham and Best Western. In Asia there has been an important growth in markets like China, Korea and Japan.
Also the traffic on our websites is increasing steadily. Today we reach over 2.5 Mio Unique Users per month. Our booking partners do over 14000 monthly transactions thanks to our traffic.
Q What’s your target audience, business or leisure?
TVtrip focuses both on business and leisure travelers. Videos are definitely an added value for both groups. A recent Google study shows that videos are used throughout the whole travel planning process, both from business and leisure customers.
Q TVtrip is a unique hotel booking website – who are your closest competitors?
In theory we compete with video production companies. But our technical solutions and video distribution model are quite unique.
Q What’s still to come from TVtrip and what can we expect from 2011?
Today we do not only film hotels but also restaurants, point of interests etc. TVtrip will evolve toward being a complete video travel guide, helping Internet users plan their trip thanks to our videos – and very soon our customers and hoteliers will be able to upload their own videos onto TVtrip giving a more, comprehensive view of the destination.
My thanks to Annika for talking to Hotel Insight. TVtrip are certainly an innovative company and with big plans for the future. Check out their website here.