How to Credit User-Generated Content

User-Generated Content (UGC) is a significant part of digital marketing strategies – especially within the tourism industry. UGC is any text, video, or image that is posted by a user unrelated to a brand or business. For destinations specially, UGC images and videos are a swift and easy way to find great content for your blogs, newsletters, and posts. There are many ways to find and use UGC for your marketing purposes. However, the most crucial part of the process is gaining permission and accrediting users. Read on for how credit user-generated content.

Finding User-Generated Content

The first obstacle is learning how to find content generated by your visitors. Tools like Crowdriff and Chute are paid services that can be used to gather photos/videos taken in your destination. Other ways you can find UGC is through the IG ‘search feature’, using a Location Tag, or your tagged photos. Instagram also allows users to search the social platform by using hashtags and Location Tag. Hashtags are a crucial piece of your brand that helps categorizes content for your audiences.

Pictured Rocks Cruises does a great job of promoting their hashtag by using #picturedrockscruises in their bio. Unsure of where to put or how to use your hashtag? Check out these 5 Places to Put Your Hashtag Right Now. If your hashtag isn’t getting enough use, check out these 5 ways to Increase Visitor Usage of your Hashtag.

How to Ask for Permission to Use UGC

The most important part about using user-generated content – is to get permission! Since you don’t own the content, you will need to ask the creator for consent. Destinations like Discover Puerto Rico comment on a UGC post they wanted to use in order to obtain consent. Their comment contains directions to head to their Terms of Use page and to reply with hashtag #YesToPR.

If your destination does not have a Terms of Use page – a simple comment will do. Frankenmuth obtains permission by commenting on the post with something like:

“Nice photo! Mind if we use it for promotional purposes or on our social media? Reply #YesFrankenmuth if it’s okay! Thanks!’

In this example. Bronners Christmas was not the owner of the photo so they tagged the user in the comment to received consent.

How to Credit UGC

Properly crediting UGC is absolutely paramount. Although there’s no strict rules or guidelines, there are best practices. Like adding a simple 📸: @username in the caption can work. Some organizations will tag the creator in the picture itself when posting it on Instagram. By tagging them in the photo, it appears under their tagged pots on their profile. This links back to your profile which can result it higher engagement.

Even when running ads using UGC, accreditation is required. Discover Kalamazoo credits UGC photos in ads by using a text overly of the creator’s name. You can use this tactic or include credit within the caption.

If you are embedding a photo directly to your website or blog post, luckily it will automatically give credit. Embedding photos on your site will appear just like how it appears on Instagram and will link to the original post. If you’re unable to embed your photos into your landing page, adding captions are the easiest way to do this. Just like how Pictured Rocks adds photo credit directly under the UGC.

How to Use UGC

Now that you’ve learned how to credit user-ergenerated content — how do you use it? User-generated content can be used in a variety of ways. For the travel and tourism industry – the best ways to utilize this kind on content are in your blog posts, monthly e-newsletter, and #PicofTheWeek posts. You can show your visitors love by using and crediting their photos for your social media and promotional purposes. Integrating these into your blogs and social posts allows for future visitors to take a glimpse of experiencing your destination through the eyes of another visitor.

A weekly #PicOfTheWeek is a simple and easy way to show your followers that you love them. In our case, we highlight a client we have worked with every week. When posting a #PicOfTheWeek be sure to tag, comment, or shout out the owner of the photo.

User-Generated Content can be used in a variety of ways. Its imperative to learn how to credit user-generated content. The travel and tourism industry benefits enormously by using these videos and images. UGC images give a glimpse to future travelers of a view from a visitor or local. This can help increase your social media engagement and positive brand awareness.

Be sure to check back here weekly to see what we are talking about on our blog like What To Do With Your Down-Time, Best CTA Practices, and How to Create a Reemerging Landing Website for your reopening strategy! Don’t forget to also sign up for our e-newsletter to make sure you keep up-to-date on all things TwoSix Digital!