When you don’t have a social media team on-staff, creating enough content to fill your social media feed can be tough. Luckily, there is a wealth of user-generated media being shared publicly by travelers that you can tap into on Instagram.
For some brands, there’s a wealth of user-generated content (UGC) being shared from their guests that hotels can simply re-share with great engagement. Other hotels are located in exotic destinations that people can’t get enough of. Kimpton Hotels is an example that is known for encouraging guests to share their trips, resulting in great social media posts.
However, you don’t have to be in a big city or have a big budget to be able to find great content to share. The best user-generated content may be in the most remote of places! Here’s a quick guide to finding beautiful content to share, while providing credit back to the content creator (keeping you out of trouble).
This guide works best to share Instagram posts to Facebook and Google+, though it can be used for any social media. Instagram posts look great on Facebook, but they don’t embed well on Twitter – instead, you’ll just see a link to the Instagram posts. This has something to do with Twitter cards and metadata not being supported by Instagram; however, the short answer is that Facebook owns Instagram, and Twitter doesn’t need Instagram to look good. There is a workaround if you want photos to post to Twitter, but it involves a Tumblr and IFTTT account. You can still share the same Instagram links to Twitter, but this guide really works best for Facebook and Google+ posts.
Let’s say we’re searching for content for a hotel in a small town. We chose Harper, Kansas, which has a population of just over 1,400. If you go to Instagram and type in the Search box, you’ll see a location pop up.
When you click on the city, you’ll find all the posts that people have used location tags on for that area. You can also try different combinations of search terms to find hashtags people have used. Also search for locations people would have tagged, like a nearby park or restaurant.
Find a post you want to share, and right-click to open it in a new tab.
Then, just copy the URL from the single image page.
You can paste this URL to other social media accounts. It will embed the post, providing credit back to the original photo-taker and allowing you to comment on it.
Try following your state or city’s tourism bureau, news organizations, and other businesses to find content to share.
If you’re using Instagram to market your hotel, download a free app like Repost to be able to easily share posts by other people, all while giving proper credit back. Never steal content (screenshot or save and then share without credit) – not only will it make you look bad, but you don’t want to be on the wrong side of a lawsuit. One photographer won $1.2 million in court for news organizations stealing his images from Twitter. The lesson? Always embed, retweet, and backlink. If you follow the steps above to use direct links to the content from the original poster’s public account, you’re free to share!