Do you travel a lot and stay in a hotel? Next time, why not ask for free room in exchange for making to help promote their hotel?
You might be thinking, why would they give you a free room? But you’ll be surprised how many hotels are wiling to market themselves using YouTubers. So it is worth to try.
Good thing is that, you don’t need to have lots of subscribers to get free room. Obviously, if you have lots of subscribers, it would be easier. But it is not necessary. But you still have to show them that you are somewhat established and have some videos to showcase them.
If you don’t have any videos to show them, you can always start making travel videos promoting the hotel every time you travel. Think of it as building your resume.
Create Media Kit
A Media Kit is a document containing information about your Youtube channel. It isn’t difficult to make your own Media Kit. To get it started, take a look at other Youtuber’s media kit and get some ideas. There are also some free online tool available to help you create your own media very easily such as VISME.com and Canva.com.
You don’t have to have Media Kit but it would be helpful to have one. When you ask for a free room, you give them your Media Kit which shows them that you are established and serious.
Media Kit should includes summery of your Youtube channel, and some stats on who your audiences are. You can find these stats in your Youtube analytics.
When you are done with Media Kit, you can attach it as PDF or JPG on your email when you ask for free room.
Contact the Hotel
Now look for hotels that you are interest in. When you choose your hotel, consider that bigger hotel chains are bit difficult to get any respond from. Start by choosing smaller type of hotel or Inn. You might have better chance with smaller hotels and Inns.
If you are having difficulty finding a hotel, you can always look for discount website such as Groupon or TravelZoo. The hotels listed in Groupon or Travelzoo are hotels that are already have some kind of promotions.
Search the hotel website and look for contact email address. Then send email asking for free room with your Media Kit if you already have one. If you are having hard time locating email address, take a look a their Facebook page and send Direct Message. Most likely someone will respond back and guide you to proper contacts.
On your emailing make it clear your your intention. Then give example of your previous work and link to your channel. Boast about some of the positive things about your channel.
When you ask for free room, let them know you are available on off season and Monday through Thursday. On off season, many hotel have vacant rooms specially on Monday through Thursday . So you have better chance of getting free room.
When you send the email, do it early in the year after the holiday season. Usually this is when the hotel’s new marketing budget starts for the year, so they have more room to give away from room.
Make a log of all the email you send out. Make note of when you sent it and where you sent it. After few weeks, if you don’t hear from them, send follow up email. After follow up email and you still don’t hear back from them, just move on.
When you get reply from them, tries to work with one person. Get to know that person little bit and always be in contact with that person, so you can give them updates with your video progress.
My name is [name], and I am a Youtube content creator. My family and I have a YouTube channel where we showcase fun places to visit for families in [city]. We have over 1k subscribers, over 329k total video views, 150 videos, and continue to grow.
My family and I want to make video showcasing [city]. I was wondering if you have gave us complementary stay at [hotel name]. In return, I’ll be creating a entertaining video showcasing the hotel and help promote the hotel. Once the video is done, it will be upload to my Youtube channel and you have rights to use the video anyway you like. Also I can help promote the hotel through my social medias. We have about 11.4k Twitters followers and over 1180 Instagram followers. We are perfectly okay staying any day Monday through Thursday during the off season.
If this is something you are interested in, please let me know. Thanks for your time.
Here is example of work we did in other hotel :: [link to example videos]
Here is link to our Youtube channel :: [link to your youtube channel]
Tips for making videos
So you got a free room, what should I do? When you check in, asked to talk to the on-site manager and work with that person. This maybe different than person you are corresponding in email. Introduce yourself and get to know the manager little bit. Also ask for little tour of the hotel and you can film during the tour. Also ask them if you can interview them talking about the hotel and surrounding area.
Here are something to consider then you shoot the video:
- If the hotel has interesting history and some uniqueness, focus on it.
- Interview with manager to talk about the hotel
- Detail Tour of the room
- Showcase things you can do around the area.
Remember, when you shoot the video, your focus is helping them promote the hotel so feature many positive things about the hotel. But at the same time, make it person and entertaining.
Keep in contact with contact person and let them know the progress of the video. Once video is done, let them know and get some feed back.
Don’t give up!
Asking for free room is almost like sending job resume. Many of them aren’t going to reply back to you. So more you sent out, better chance you get to hear back from someone. So don’t just give up after sending few emails out and you don’t hear back from them. Just keep sending email out to different hotels regularly.