In the second installment of Stamp’s “Encouraging the Conversation” vlog series, David Allred and Victoria Belton touch on the importance of lifting up user-generated content (UGC) to promote your destination. With the participatory nature of social media, travelers are increasingly wanting to hear from their peers about the merits of a destination before planning their next trip. Blog articles, mobile-optimized websites and even visitor guides are all important to this process, but nothing compares to the experiences of fellow travelers. By promoting authentic visitor-generated content, you are not only leveraging the crowd (crowdsourcing) for marketing purposes, but you are demonstrating to these visitors that their feedback is important to you.
With this in mind, social media managers should begin the process of evolving from primarily creating content (that often tends to be biased to that individual’s interests) to curating UGC. And with all the “UGC listening” your social media curator will be doing as they fully embrace the curation process, they will also find instances (of disappointed) visitors that can be “managed” as well. ALL of this effort will help “encourage the positive conversation” about your DMO.
Social Media Curators vs. Coordinators for DMOs
Victoria: For the last few years, social media coordinators have been tasked with generating a lot of original content for destination marketing organizations’ social channels. With consumers beginning to demand to hear from their peers, lifting up user-generated content is now more critical than ever. But you can’t just send all of your UGC unfiltered to your web and social channels. This is why we are now often talking about content curation versus content coordination.
David: Think of a museum curator. It is not their job to create any of the art that will be in the museum. It is their job to select and then choose how to display art that they feel will be most compelling to their museum visitors.
Victoria: To get ideas for how a social media curator should identify content to curate through to your online marketing channels to generate visitor interest in your destination, watch our video about developing a social media editorial calendar.