How many tweets did fans post about the MTV VMAs yesterday? A LOT. There were more than 11.5 million tweets posted about the VMAs during the 2.5-hour show and 20.9 million tweets during the full day on Sunday. A few other highlights:
- Kanye West announced he will run for president in 2020, and generated 2.8 million tweets in just an hour and 4.6 million tweets all day.
- There were more than 3.6 million tweets about Miley Cyrus yesterday.
- Justin Bieber made a big appearance – with a brand new haircut – and spurred 2.9 million tweets yesterday.
MTV’s big publicity push around this year’s show really paid off, making it one of the most-tweeted about VMAs in history. What was your favorite moment?
This is a repost of our Editor-in-Chief Jenn Deering Davis’ article about Instagram over on Medium.
Yesterday, Instagram made a big change. They now allow photos with landscape and portrait orientations! They’ve moved away from the square and are fully embracing the rectangle. So what does this mean? How will it impact users? How will brands adapt? Let’s discuss.
First, it’s worth reflecting on why Instagram photos were square in the first place. Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom has said Instagram wanted to be different, to find a way to do photos in a way that stood out. And the square format looks good; it’s consistent and visually appealing. Others have suggested the images are square because that format mimics vintage cameras much like the Instagram logo itself. Either way, this is how it’s always been and today’s announcement was a pretty significant departure from what we’ve all come to know and love from Instagram.
But what you might not remember is that Instagram photos didn’t always have to be square. For the first couple years of Instagram’s existence, you could actually force other sized images into the square with zoom, and Instagram would add black bars around it, like this photo from October 2011.
But not everyone liked this. The Next Web hated it. Lots of purists hated it; non-square photos cluttered the stream, made the profile less attractive, interrupted the experience. But so many other users loved it, and wholeheartedly embraced the non-square photo, uploading thousands and thousands of them.
But then in late 2012, Instagram removed this feature (or fixed this bug, depending who you ask), forcing all users to only upload square photos. Of course, many loyal Instagram users were upset. Appsfire, an app that rated other apps, noted that Instagram dropped to a quality score of 11 (down from 97) when they made that change.
Fast forward a few years, and we’ve all adapted just fine to the square. Or so we thought. It turns out that this whole time, lots and lots of people were manually uploading non-square photos by first editing them in a third-party app that adds those bars around your image to make it look landscape or portrait but still fit into a square box, like this. We’re all guilty of doing this every once in a while – sometimes there’s a sunset you just can’t quite fit into a square box. Some subjects demand a full landscape orientation. So you post one hacked-up landscape photo, accept that it makes your feed look less nice, and move on. But you promise yourself it’s a one-time thing and you won’t do it again. However, you’re not alone. As we learned today, 20% of all Instagram photos are not square. So to better serve that considerable use case, Instagram has finally decided to officially include landscape and portrait photos.
So, what does this mean for Instagram? Does this improve or detract from the experience? Before going into that, I need to disclose that I am an avid Instagram booster. I love Instagram and use it obsessively. I was one of their earliest users and almost five years later, still use it multiple times a day. So I’m likely biased.
But I love this change and I think it’s huge for the platform. Here are a few reasons why.
Flexibility. The square format, while beloved by many, was seen as restraining by others. It forced users to adapt what they shot for this very specific and often limiting format. Now they can post anything, including wide subjects or tall ones. For brands in particular, they needed to create – or convert – content specifically for the square format. Now that they can use other shapes and sizes, they can more easily adapt their brand content to the medium. It could even mean more participation from brands, both those already on the platform and those who haven’t ventured there yet.
Creativity. While the square format pushed users to get creative about the content of their images, welcoming landscape and portrait images opens up a whole new set of possibilities on Instagram. If users aren’t forced into a single aspect ratio, they’re no longer limited in what they can do. Instagram is wide open now, making room for all our images, even those that don’t work well square. We’ll likely see new kinds of images, much like we did when Instagram unveiled the Layout app. Fewer limits means better quality images.
Simplicity. Before this change, many users manually created landscape and portrait photos in third-party apps that added letterboxes around the image to force it square. Now that Instagram allows for this in-app, not only it is easier for users to share these kinds of images, but it keeps them in Instagram. This is great for users and maybe even better for Instagram because it will increase time spent in Instagram and decrease reliance on third party apps. This just makes it easier to post those 14 million new photos each day that aren’t square.
So is this a change for the better? Absolutely. Yes, some of us will have to get used to a different feed. But Instagram has implemented this change well, and the photos look great in the stream. This change will make the experience easier and more useful for the entire Instagram community. Photographer Technosailer said it best back in 2012 when he wrote, “I choose what my photos look like” (emphasis his). Now we all can. That will only make the Instagram experience better.
We spend the week reading the best things we can get our eyeballs on and on Fridays we share them here with you. Leave your thoughts in the comments, or come find us on Twitter at @UnionMetrics.
This week brought a lot of platform-specific updates and milestones, so here’s a breakdown in case you missed some of them.
Looking at the current state of brands on Vine compared to top Viners, Brands Still Have Catching up to do. Lots of roundups on marketing sites discuss how clever things like Lowe’s 6-second Vine tips are, so why aren’t they catching on? Kevin Johnson explains that it has to do with the platform’s demographics:
“If brands really wish to connect with Vine’s young audience, they need to realize that what works on other social media platforms will not necessarily translate to equal levels of success on Vine. Vine humor tends to focus on the slapstick, the socially awkward, the ridiculous and the profane – much of what plays out on the most popular Vine channels would never fly on television.”
If that’s your brand’s target demographic, consider pairing with a Vine influencer who already has a following and knows the type of humor that will work there, or settle in and do your research before you start planning your Vine content.
You’ll also want to familiarize yourself with the Vine updates that just came out, including an improved music experience.
In case you still think Instagram is only for the B2C market, you might want to read The Power of Instagram for B2B Marketers from Sylvia Jensen. It’s not “just a fun mobile app” after all, it’s “part of today’s media system”.
Andrew Hutchinson brings wisdom from within Instagram themselves, sharing the creativity that went into the first brands to use their carousel advertising option in Brand Storytelling on Instagram – Some Key Notes to Benefit Your Social Strategy. Inspiration for brands of all sizes.
And the big Instagram ICYMI: Instagram updated yesterday to allow users to upload photos in portrait or landscape, ending the tyranny of the square-shaped image. This along with the end of the plague on vertical video means social media is changing. What do you think?
Snapchat still confusing? Wondering how brands actually. . .use it? Then Five seriously creative Snapchat campaigns and their results from Jack Simpson for Econsultancy is just the read for you. Pair with Everything You Need to Know About Snapchat Geofilters from Brian Murray to learn more about one of Snapchat’s lesser talked about features.
“In order to achieve significant scale, branded YouTube videos require paid support.”
And finally, here’s a clever cross-platform experiment to try from Nick Venezia: How to Use a $5 Twitter Ad to Redefine Your Facebook Strategy.
Our social media photos and videos are evolving. Things aren’t as square or as horizontal as they used to be. Instagram now supports images that aren’t square and Snapchat wants you to use vertical video. What does it mean?!
Be there or be square no longer
Today Instagram announced support for portrait and landscape images. They’re moving beyond the iconic square for the first time in nearly five years. This is a huge move for the company that forced millions of us to rethink how we take and share images. Early on, the square format took some getting used to – it was just so different from what many of us knew. But since then, we’ve adapted and come to love the square format. It required more creativity in our photos’ framing, subject and distance.
Instagram now says that 20% of photos uploaded to their app are not square and include some horizontal or vertical padding. For purists who like a neat stream, the padding others added to their images before uploading interrupted the Instagram experience. But for photographers who want to truly capture the full experience of their subjects, the square format can be limiting. Sometimes things just look better in a landscape or portrait orientation. So now we can opt to share these images in Instagram, without modifying them in a third-party squaring app. This changes things on Instagram.
Vertical video vertigo
And then there’s vertical video – another change to the way we format visual content on social media. Two years ago, the internet was irritated about vertical video syndrome, calling for a ban on portrait videos and asking everyone to remember to rotate their phones before they shoot. But now, we’re being encouraged to do more vertical video. It’s hard to keep up with.
Snapchat is leading this charge into vertical video, but even Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are all adding deeper support for it. Snapchat says vertical video ads are nine times more likely to be watched than the horizontal ads. Mobile phones encourage a vertical experience, and it’s harder than it may seem to rotate the phone. Especially when things are happening fast, like they do on Snapchat; you may not even have a chance to rotate your phone before a snap is over. So embracing vertical video seems like a great idea, and will let us capture more video more naturally.
So what do you think? Do you shoot more vertical video now or are you a landscape purist? What about non-square photos on Instagram? Will you give in?
We’ve written quite a bit about Twitter and conferences over the years, so we thought we’d combine the best of our existing knowledge with anything new we’ve learned through our own experiences and research. If you have wisdom of your own to share or questions we didn’t cover, leave it in the comments!
If you’re planning and running the conference
- Choose a unique, relevant hashtag and keep it as short as possible.
- Make sure you promote the hashtag ahead of time on your site, in official emails, on your social accounts, and on physical collateral throughout the event
- Consider unique hashtags for particular panels so attendees can hyper-connect and discuss particular issues of interest to them. Just keep them as short as possible so they can be used in conjunction with the official conference hashtag.
- It should go without saying, but make sure you have the wifi power and physical number of power outlets available for attendees so they’re not cut off from social at any time during the event.
- Encourage conversation among attendees by being responsive, retweeting interesting points and questions, promoting speakers and panelists, and favoriting clever responses to your tweets. Fix any problems brought to your attention as soon as humanly possible, and quickly communicate any schedule or venue changes.
- Continue to connect post-conference with presenters, speakers and attendees by sharing any wrap-ups written by your team or by others, sharing video clips of panels or keynotes, photos from cocktail hours or meet-ups, and anything else you’re able to source through your official hashtag!
- Measure your conference-related social efforts. Ideally you’ll want to set up extensive social tracking on Twitter (and any other channel you have a presence on and will be using your official hashtag with), but if things go awry you can always look at a historical measurement option. See how big of a boost this event gave your presence! Measure engagement in three ways:
- Measure total Twitter audience size. With the spread of conference content on social media like Twitter, the size of the audience can grow well beyond the number of attendees physically present (some might attend virtually!). Measure the total reach and exposure for conference tweets, as well as the number of total tweets and unique contributors.
- Determine popular speakers and presentations. Analyze conference Twitter engagement by tracking metrics like retweets, replies, favorites and impressions to learn which topics are generating buzz. Search for speaker and panel names, presentation topics and track titles to see which ones are most talked about. Find out which images are being shared the most to determine attendees’ favorite moments, and track shared URLs to see which websites and pages have been most useful to participants.
- Share metrics with sponsors. Report this information back to conference sponsors to demonstrate the value of their sponsorship. Showing sponsors how many more people their brands reached beyond in-person conference attendance can be very valuable to securing future sponsorships. When possible, share specific examples of effective tweets about or from conference sponsors.
- Bonus: Use all of this data to plan your next conference. It will tell you what went well, what you can improve, and how your conference compares to other similar conferences with available numbers.
And if you want more details on marketing your conference across social channels, check out Marketing your conference across platforms: Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr and Marketing your conference across platforms: Snapchat and Pinterest.
If you’re attending the conference
- Use that official hashtag! Use it to network and connect with other attendees, use it to share your thoughts during panels and ask questions, use it to find new people to follow and interact with not only during the conference, but after.
- Be sure you’re following official accounts, and follow presenters and other attendees you find interesting. Take things a step further by thanking organizers and speakers after the event; they’ll definitely appreciate it!
- Browse the official hashtag in your downtime, along with any unique hashtags for panels you didn’t get the chance to attend. Retweet, favorite, and respond to connect with any tweets or tweeters who catch your eye to extend your networking even further.
- Upload photos of you and other attendees at official and unofficial events around the conference and tag it with the official hashtag to add another layer to your presence.
- If you’re a local, share tips for non-local attendees and presenters on where to eat or relax in their downtime. Offer to meet up with fellow attendees to show them around and take them out on the town or for a run on your favorite trail. And if you’re not local, take any kind locals up on these offers and let the conference know what a great time you’re having in the town they’re hosting in.
If you’re attending the conference virtually
- Use that official hashtag just like you’re there! Comment on live-streamed panels and keynotes, ask questions, connect with attendees who are there.
- Share quick reports around different panels- like a TweetReach from Union Metrics snapshot report- particularly if they have a unique hashtag for them. Those running the event and speaking most likely won’t have time in the moment and will very much appreciate the feedback. Want to know how it works? See our example of #smx at a glance.
- In a similar vein, you can put together a Storify of tweets from a favorite panel to share back with attendees, panel speakers, and the conference itself. Write up a blog summary of what you’ve learned and include this in it.
- If it feels right, share a photo of you from your command room from afar, toasting with a morning coffee or even a cocktail at the close of the day, and tag it with the official hashtag. It’s a fun way to get a little face time even though you’re not in the same room with everyone else.
- If you planned to attend virtually but missed all or part of the proceedings in real-time (hey, life happens), check out our post Miss a conference? 5 tips for getting the most out of the hashtag on Twitter.
A final word
Have fun! Don’t be afraid to let your personality and sense of humor shine through in your tweets. Just because you’re at a professional event doesn’t mean you have to be boring.
Social video is still the new black, and when it comes to deciding which platform to invest your resources in you need all the latest and best information you can get. So we decided to help you out with that. And remember that it’s not about pitting platforms against each other, but choosing the one that’s the best fit for your brand to bring value to your audience.
Facebook and YouTube.
YouTube is the widely acknowledged granddaddy of video content marketing. Over the years it has grown to produce its own stars, and even its own studios where creators can produce work, sometimes in partnership with brands to create content that benefits both of them. YouTube supports its creators and empowers them to make money from their presence on its site and expand their personal brand through it. View counts of videos are made “at the point at which people seem to actually be engaging with the video and not just immediately clicking away” or usually around the 30 second mark, according to YouTube creator Hank Green.
If your work is stolen and re-uploaded by a different user, YouTube has a system in place (Content ID) to identify this as existing content and allow the copyright holder to claim it so they don’t lose revenue. This is an important feature for creators, and one for brands to keep in mind as they produce original video content.
Facebook has recently made more moves into the video space, introducing its own native video uploading option which the Facebook News Feed algorithm prioritizes over outside video links. Those who have worked for years to build an audience on YouTube are now working to balance their Facebook content strategy with this built-in preference in mind; most of the Internet has a Facebook presence so it’s wise to invest time and energy into having one for almost any brand, but there aren’t as many failsafes in place to protect original content (you can learn more about the issue of “freebooting” here or below).
Facebook says that they are working on this and other issues, and to be fair, YouTube has had a decade to work on these policies and grow relationships with their creators. Facebook has enormous resources, but its video program is still a fledgling with definite room for growth.
Our best tip for a brand that may have an existing YouTube presence or wants to build one but also wants to promote that content to their audience on Facebook is one that we picked up in a recent #socialchat: Post a native Facebook “teaser” video that links to the full piece on YouTube, which will still prioritize that content over an embedded YouTube video.
Just want the numbers for each? Here’s the latest we could find:
- Facebook video views a day: 4 billion
- Hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute: 300
- Facebook unique video viewers May 2015: 85.59 million
- Google sites unique video viewers May 2015: 162.14 million
- Facebook counts a view as: 3 seconds
- YouTube counts a view as: 30 seconds
So which should you choose, Facebook or YouTube? For brands with enough resources to make it work (and you need decent resources if you’re serious about producing quality video content), we recommend using YouTube as a home base- it’s perfect for content archives and sub-channels, like highlights of the people working for you or product demos based off of FAQs- and then experimenting with different promotional tactics on Facebook.
L2 puts it well in Why Facebook and YouTube’s Competition for Views Might Be a Tie:
“Facebook provides a rapid boost of popularity and also reaches a wide audience with its interruptive viewing format. While YouTube can also achieve rapid short-term scale with advertising, the platform is better positioned for content discovery.”
Use each platform for its strengths for a more robust video content strategy.
Vine and Instagram.
Vine and Instagram are the shorter-form video options available on the social media landscape today; Twitter-owned Vines cap at 6 seconds while Facebook-owned Instagram video caps at 15. Both require creativity to pull off, but Vine even more so since you have to distill your entire story into 6 seconds. Vine also has its own language of memes, which tend to run even faster through a meme-cycle than memes elsewhere on the Internet. Brands who have seen success on Vine have either paired with influencers in the space, or launched a series of tips and tricks that fit in the 6 second format, like Lowes.
Instagram advertising is opening to everyone later this year, as previously they have only worked with select brands to produce high-quality ads that (ideally) flow seamlessly with the rest of a user’s timeline. Brands who have participated in this pilot advertising program saw a continued lift in engagement following the advertising period, according to our own research. Other brands on Instagram have paired with appropriate influencers in the space to give their content a boost, sometimes running campaigns in conjunction with various influencers in appropriate spaces.
- Instagram monthly active users: 200 million+ worldwide as of 2014
- Vine registered users: 40 million
- Instagram mobile only visitors in the US: 40 million
- Vine loops per day: 1.5 billion
- That’s more than half a trillion loops yearly.
- About 12% of consumers share photos of products they bought on Instagram at least once per month.
Vine and Instagram require a higher level of creativity to be successful for most audiences, but brands can also test using these platforms to tease a smaller part of a larger work, driving traffic back to their YouTube channel or wherever it is they desire.
It’s once again about choosing the platform that’s best for your brand, which is the one that’s best for your audience: Are they interested in 6 second tips? Or high-quality video that’s often aspirational in nature? Know your audience and go from there.
Periscope and Meerkat.
The newest players on the block, these two live-streaming apps seem to be all many marketers are talking about lately. Meerkat debuted just before Twitter-owned Periscope, but both are quickly becoming pretty even in terms of the features they have: You can save your live-stream for later playback on both, you can connect them to existing networks to promote your stream (Facebook for Meerkat and Twitter for Periscope) and find accounts to follow, and you can use either to do a product demo, AMA, behind-the-scenes tour, exclusive interview, or give a front row seat to your mobile audience at a product launch.
Meerkat’s distinguishing features include a scheduling ability to help your audience plan around watching your stream, and Cameo, the ability to let another user take over your stream for up to 60 seconds. Periscope does not have either of these features at the moment, but that doesn’t mean something similar won’t be incorporated in a future update. Periscope does have a private broadcasting feature, a great way to set-up communication between offices or for the camera-shy to practice their live-streaming.
- Meerkat users: about 156k
- Daily active Periscope users: 2 million
- Video content streamed on Meerkat: 91,776 as of March 2015
- Video content streamed daily on Periscope: 350k hours of video (40 years per day!)
- 20% of Meerkat users watch over 2 hours of live video daily.
- More than 10 million people have created Periscope accounts since the product launched at the end of March.
Choose the live-streaming app that has more of the audience you’re trying to reach, and be sure you at least have an outline or rough idea of what you’re going to talk about before you just start saying things at your phone for an hour. Remember that whoever you put on Periscope or Meerkat is representing your brand, so choose a brand representative that matches brand values, is articulate and engaging, and does well in front of a camera.
Live-streaming is a new area for almost everyone, so don’t worry about producing a highly-polished video. Use this to experiment and show largely unseen aspects of your brand: Give private tours of labs or venues, interview staff setting up for an event, host an AMA around an interesting topic in your industry.
We recommend bookmarking this handy chart from Marketing Land - Social Video Chart: Your At-A-Glance Guide To 7 Major Platforms - to refer to on a lot of social video platform differences when you’re deciding where to put your content.
And if you have any other questions, please leave them in the comments or find us on Twitter @UnionMetrics.
We spend the week reading the best things we can get our eyeballs on and on Fridays we share them here with you. Leave your thoughts in the comments, or come find us on Twitter at @UnionMetrics.
Emotions + Emoji
If you think emoji are just for the teens, this piece by Shel Holtz for Holtz Communications wants you to reconsider (if your audience is into emoji, that is): Emoji are here to stay so start figuring out how they fit in your communications.
Bonus of emoji? It’s universal:
“You don’t need to speak a common language to understand emoji. No translation is necessary. Emoji—like so many other images—transcends language barriers.”
And while social media has given us a whole new set of shiny tools to communicate with each other, human communication itself hasn’t actually changed. John Unger talks How to Tap Into Emotions and Boost Your Content Marketing for the Jeff Bullas blog.
Video + Periscope
Wondering How to Use Periscope in Your Content Marketing? You’re in luck because Dave Murrow answers just that for Bussiness2Community. This piece has a great breakdown of the app’s basics, plus some examples of how brands are using it already and how other brands could be using it. (That’s you!)
Okay, maybe not everything, but here’s 5 Things Everyone Should Know About Pinterest from Jim Dougherty for Cision. Think Pinterest is only good for food blogs and crafty moms? You may want to reconsider:
“Thirty percent of this business’s social traffic comes from Pinterest. What business is it?
Odds are that Bank of America didn’t come immediately to mind, but that’s the answer. Bank of America’s popular Better Money Habits Pinterest boards host original content explaining many money-related questions, and they enhance their original content with relevant re-Pins such as wedding budgeting information.”
Trying to get good organic reach on Facebook seems like a battle brands can’t win lately, but Gini Dietrich has been experimenting over at Spin Sucks, and they’re sharing their results so far in Facebook Rewards Longer Content: Here’s What We Found. Spoiler alert: longform content on Facebook might not be the kiss of death you assume it is, especially as they revamp Notes.
And last but not least, a great interview with Erin Gleeson, the outreach specialist at 1-800-PetMeds, by Kristen Matthews for Convince and Convert: How to Comply with FTC Guidelines. Read firsthand how someone running a blogger outreach program keeps everything on the up-and-up with Johnny Law.
TL;DR? When in doubt, disclose.
Have a great weekend, everyone!
Have you run a TweetReach snapshot report lately? Well we have great news! Our free snapshot reports now include up to 100 tweets! That’s twice the tweets they had before. Try it now – click on the image below to run your own free report.
Run a snapshot report today on any hashtag, keyword, account name, or whatever it is that interests you (see more about what you can search for with a snapshot report here) and now get twice as many tweets about it. Still for free!
And don’t forget to share your report on Twitter once you’ve run it. We love to see what people are searching for!
Summer is peak travel time for most people, so whether you’re getting a head start on planning next year’s vacation or you’re having a last minute flight of fancy, we wanted to bring you the best travel resources we’ve found across social media.
Know of one we’re missing? Leave it in the comments, or tell us about it on Twitter @UnionMetrics.
Twitter travel resources
Twitter is fantastic for all stages of travel planning: You can find local people and businesses to follow beforehand (or even other travelers who have been there before or will be there around the same time!) to do research about where you want to go and even get recommendations for things off the beaten path. If you’re not sure where to start finding these resources, we suggest joining a Twitter chat like Condé Nast’s weekly chat #TravelerHelpDesk. Get all your questions answered by someone immersed in the travel business!
Thanks for following along in this week's #TravelerHelpDesk! Check back next week for more!
— Condé Nast Traveler (@CNTraveler) August 6, 2015
For even more Twitter travel resources to get you started, check out The top travel resources on Twitter: Accounts to follow and chats to attend and find a few more chats not listed in that post in Travel resources on Twitter and more: Updated.
As for travel brands and those who work in the travel industry, you might like 2 reasons why the travel industry should be measuring share of voice and from Twitter themselves, Three new insights for travel brands on Twitter:
“Twitter is a favorite travel companion; about a third of users access Twitter before or after a trip, while 39% use the platform mid-journey. And nearly 20% of users Tweet to share feedback throughout their travel experience. Because it’s used at every stage of the travel process, Twitter can help brands develop strong relationships with consumers.”
Tumblr travel resources
Tumblr has an engaged travel community, and you can find travel companies sharing resources and vacation inspiration alongside other users. Start by visiting the Tumblr travel spotlight to find popular travel blogs to browse and follow, including Condé Nast Traveler for inspiration, or more explicit guides like this one from London’s Gatwick Airport or this NOLA city guide from a local perspective.
If you’re interested in everything we’ve covered on Tumblr and travel, check out the following:
- Just how big is the #travel community on Tumblr? Very.
- Travel on Tumblr: Tips
- Travel on Tumblr: Oh the places brands and publications can go
- Travel on Tumblr: Cruisin’
- Travel on Tumblr: Travel Companies
- Travel on Tumblr: Travel Publications
- Travel on Tumblr: Updated
Facebook travel resources
Facebook is a great place to follow your favorite travel companies to stay on top of any deals they’re offering- sometimes Facebook exclusive deals!- or contests you might want to enter. After all nothing beats a great vacation more than a free great vacation.
If you have travel blogs you love and read regularly it’s also a great idea to Like their Facebook pages to see when they post new updates. If you want to make sure you never miss an update, Facebook recently released a new way to prioritize who you see in your News Feed.
What Facebook really excels at is crowdsourcing information from your network of friends and family: Make a status update to ask for advice on what not to miss in a certain city you’re visiting, or look through albums to be sure you remember the name of that national park that looked like a can’t-miss from your college friend’s last vacation. You might even get the chance to reconnect with a long-lost friend you forgot was living in your next travel destination. Just don’t forget to post your own albums when you get home to pay it forward.
Instagram travel resources
Instagram is the place where people share photos of the places they’ve been, so browse around on #TravelTuesday to get some travel inspiration and check out the other hashtags we’ve listed here if that’s not enough for you. (While you’re browsing, don’t be afraid to follow any accounts you particularly like or ask questions about destination spots in the comments!)
Use the same hashtags to share your own travel photos past, present, and future. Just remember not to share too many photos on Instagram at once; we recommend spacing out no more than three- or maybe five if they’re really good- a day. Use your discretion based on what you know about your followers.
Snapchat travel resources
Snapchat is a great way to share your travel adventures with your friends while they’re happening without worrying about flooding any of their feeds. You don’t have to worry about data either because Snapchat just released Travel Mode. Follow travel brands Marriott Hotels (username marriotthotels) and Condé Nast Traveler (cntraveler) on Snapchat, as well as travel personalities Jerome Jarre (jeromejarre) and Casey Neistat (caseyneistat).
Topdeck Travel (topdeck.travel) also has an account they promote as “the first travel show on Snapchat” so get some travel snap inspiration from them as well.
Finally, don’t miss out on the local Live Stories Snapchat has; it’s a great way to get a glimpse of how locals really live and what they most want to share with potential visitors around the world. Here’s a recent example from Belfast:
Bonus: Pinterest and general travel resources
Pinterest really excels for the planning stage of your trip: Set up boards around what you need to pack, what sights you want to see, and pin any good travel resources you find like “how to pack for two weeks in a carry-on” or other helpful tips you might want to reference again for future trips.
For all the other tips we have on where to get the best travel information possible across social, check out our definitive post on The 10 Best Travel Resources on Social Media and Beyond and this great post from The Girl and The Globe on How to Use Social Media for Travel Planning.
Great news! Our Twitter Trackers now include automatic, complimentary 30-day backfill.
Next time you create a new Twitter Tracker in your Union Metrics account*, it’ll start by filling in with existing tweets to give you some data to start. That will include tweets from the past 30 days (up to 5,000 tweets for TweetReach Pro subscriptions, and up to 20,000 tweets for Social Suite subscriptions). And then it will continue to monitor all new and future tweets in real-time, just like before.
A few reasons why this is awesome:
- No more missing tweets if you’re a few minutes or hours late to set up a Tracker
- Get some baseline data right away
- Twitter Trackers now get the same data to start as the other channels we monitor
- Makes handling a social media crisis or last-minute client changes much easier
TweetReach Pro from Union Metrics starts at just $99 per month. Give it a try, and get your backfilled data now!
Need more or older tweets? We can always backfill more tweets in any Tracker for a fee, any time you want. Submit your historical data request here.
*Automatic backfill is available to all Union Metrics Social Suite and TweetReach Pro Small, Medium and Large subscribers. If you’re on one of our older TweetReach Pro plans (Mini, Basic, Plus, Premium or Max), you’ll need to change to a new plan to access backfill. You can change plans any time in your account’s billing settings. Or email us and we’ll help find the right plan for you!