While a full recovery is going to take time — and it certainly won’t be easy for the tourism industry — consider using this challenging time as an opportunity to shift some of your marketing strategies and focus on connecting with your audiences.
As people practice social distancing, they are looking for ways to stay connected and social media is helping to fill that void. Social platforms like Facebook, Instagram and TikTok are seeing record increases in engagement during COVID-19. So how do DMOs engage with their target audience on social media?
In this week’s Layover, we learned about social media and user-generated content (UGC) trends and best practices from our in-house experts, John Freeman and Shanda Maloney.

In this episode, John and Shanda talk about how less polished content is now the norm and how using UGC in your marketing is cost effective while also helping build trust with audiences. They also discuss the importance of building relationships with local influencers and photographers to help source and develop content. 
When it comes to COVID-19, DMOs are including UGC on their websites and across their social media accounts to authentically show how their communities are following health and safety guidelines. John shared Fort Lauderdale’s Safe + Clean Pledge as a best practice example, as they have a UGC gallery on their website highlighting the local businesses that have taken the Clean + Safe Pledge.
The duo also gave advice on dealing with negative comments on social media, as well as the importance of correcting inaccurate comments. Plus, Shanda stressed the importance of reminding local partners to update their information across the web as well as ways to get partners more involved in content creation and social media. 

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