A new report by Hitwise has highlighted how travellers are increasingly searching for videos related to adventure destinations on social media.

For travel brands, this means greater opportunity to engage and capture consumer interest.

Here are some key insights from the research, along with a few examples of brands driving sales through adventure-driven video content.

Emerging destinations on YouTube

According to Hitwise, search interest for destinations associated with adventure has grown rapidly across social and video platforms of late, with YouTube in particular seeing a spike.

Searches for Iceland have grown 118% on the platform since 2015, closely followed by the destinations of Vietnam and Sri Lanka, which both increased 75% and 72% respectively.

So, what does this tell us about consumers?

First and foremost, that people are looking for unique experiences rather than standard getaways. Instead of typically popular European locations, travellers appear to be showing a greater desire to explore unusual or unfamiliar locations.

Secondly, it also shows that video is an increasingly powerful tool for engagement. Now, consumers are turning to sites like YouTube for the sole purpose of discovery, rather than starting their journey on Google or travel websites.

Driving traffic from YouTube

The report also shows that brands are tapping into YouTube data in order to successfully transition interest from social media to brand websites.

By profiling users to determine what kind of content they are watching, as well as the types of content that typically drives subscription to YouTube channels – companies are aiming to convert passive viewers to active consumers.

With a 59% increase in referral traffic year-on-year, Skyscanner has been one of the brands to best capitalise on YouTube interest.

Meanwhile, Booking.com has also seen success with a rise of 31% in referral traffic from YouTube.

Further examples of adventure-driven video content

While Hitwise has highlighted how aggregator sites have benefitted from this adventurous video content, many other travel brands have also been getting in on the action.

Here are just a few more examples worth a look.

Expedia

Expedia's video content strategy is typically based on a 'travel guide' format, showcasing the sights and sounds of a particular place. However, one of the most popular on its channel is the 'How Far' video in a collaboration with Explore Australia.

Using 360 degree technology, it allows users to explore Australia's awe-inspiring landscapes and oceans, while drawing them in with a daring and emotion-stirring narrative.

GoPro

While GoPro is a camera brand, it famously uses travel content to engage with adrenaline-hungry consumers.

While slick, brand-produced video is a big part of its strategy, user-generated content is also a regular fixture, helping to build the brand's reputation as the ideal camera to use abroad.

Intrepid Travel

Unsurprisingly for a brand rooted in adventurous experiences, Intrepid Travel's YouTube channel is full to the brim with action-packed video content.

Its not always adrenaline-fuelled, however.

Despite the name, the 'Adventure Collective' series follows a 'day in the life' format, showcasing the unique and varied nature of what it's like to immerse yourself in a local culture.

Lonely Planet

Lastly, Lonely Planet is a brand that uses YouTube videos to capture interest in a specific place.

Interestingly, it often chooses to forgo narrative for a solely visual approach, managing to capture the otherwordly nature of locations while still providing in-depth insight.

Related reading:

Nikki Gilliland

Published 10 March, 2017 by Nikki Gilliland @ Econsultancy

Nikki is a Writer at Econsultancy. You can follow her on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn.

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