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This is a guest blog post by Patrick Foster from Ecommerce Tips(opens in a new tab).

Videos are a great for getting your tour company viral — but hard to get right. Finding that sweet spot where a video is engaging and shareable is tough, but doable. If you want to create a video that shows off everything your tours have to offer, follow these tried-and-tested techniques that will get your company the attention you’re looking for.

1. Make it compelling

The videos that stay with you the longest are the videos that really made you feel. Whether it’s joy, sadness, inspiration, or humor, the way to really connect with consumers and compel them to share your video is to make them feel something. Check out this example from Artifact Uprising(opens in a new tab), following the story of one of their customers, Joe:

Right from the start, it’s hard to look away. They weave an engaging narrative that keeps you hooked till the very end. It’s easy to forget that this is actually an advert for a custom photo bookmaker, not a gripping emotional drama!

As a tour operator, your industry is perfect for this. A tour is rich with possibilities, and your video should reflect that. As an example, you could tell an inspirational customer story that follows a young man’s first solo adventure in Asia, an experience that could spark dozens more in their lifetime. Your audience are all itching to have their own adventure, and they’ll be moved to share that video with their friends too.

2. Avoid being overly promotional

Nothing turns ad-savvy customers off more than a video that is obviously an advert for a brand. They’ll see straight through it and switch off instantly, and that means a lost customer. Avoid being overtly sales-y, as this will detract from the real value that your company has to offer to the customer.

Instead, focus on the story of the video and how it can benefit the viewer. The customer always wants to feel valued, so put them first. A great example (especially for dog-lovers!) is this advert for Purina dog food:

Throughout the video, the brand’s logo is barely visible, and the product placement is subtle enough to not distract or repel viewers. The customer can really enjoy the advert without feeling sold to, which makes for the perfect viral video.

3. Pass on value to your customers

Some of the best viral videos haven’t just been fun to watch, but they’ve been useful too. If people find something beneficial or interesting, they’ll share it online and pass on that value to their followers. It could be top ten ecotourism hotspots or the best places to ski in Europe. This is information your customers will find useful and want to share with friends!

Plus, any good tour operator will know their destinations inside out. This means you’ve got the inside track on all the fascinating and exciting places that are off the beaten tourist track, and your customers want to hear about it. The best bars in Bali? The finest vineyards in France? You know it all, and it’s that kind of insider knowledge that will make your videos go viral.

4. Keep it short and sweet

A good viral video is short enough to grab the viewer’s attention fast. The average attention span of a human is just 8 seconds, so you need to open with an intriguing hook and keep your video short. With such a short time open to you, you need to make your video exciting.

This might prove tough for online businesses that are selling uninspiring products like accounting software or cleaning products — how can you make bleach exciting? — but for tour operators it’s easy! It’s an exciting industry that offers something for everyone, from chilled beach holidays to thrilling hikes for intrepid explorers.

The tour company industry is perfect for viral videos. Breathtaking landscapes and exciting adventures always appeal to audiences, and are perfect for a visual medium like video. Keep it short but engaging, and your video will go viral in no time.

Follow Patrick on Twitter @myecommercetips(opens in a new tab).

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