Conrad Hotels and Resorts has turned Instagram into a booking platform, linking pictures of its 24 hotels to its reservations page. Marketing vice president Stuart Foster says positive results could lead to the program being adopted by other Hilton brands, according to a report in USA Today.
Conrad is using Like2Buy technology by Curalate, a visual marketing firm, to turn Instagram photos into money-making vehicles.
Some of the photos have been taken by professionals on behalf the hotel. But in many cases, the photographer is the hotel guest. The pictures include buildings, rooms, food and experiences. A photo of the Conrad Pezula in South Africa, for example, shows people horseback riding.
Foster says Conrad was inspired by the fashion industry to leverage Instagram.
A Forrester Research study last year found that Instagram delivered brands 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook and 120 times more than Twitter.
As of the end 2014, Instagram was the third-most widely used social network among travelers, according to PhoCusWright. The travel market research firm found that 83 percent of travelers are active Facebook users, 38 percent are Twitter users and 29 percent are Instagram users.