How to Use CrowdRiff If You Only Have 15 Minutes a Day

April 29, 2020 Julia Manoukian

If you’re like most destination marketers right now, you’re strapped for time. 

Luckily, sourcing and publishing content with CrowdRiff takes as little as 15 minutes a week. Below you’ll find the routines that hundreds of destination marketers are using right now to keep their organic channels active, support their local partners, and plan for the recovery. 

Like most things, the more time you put into CrowdRiff, the more the platform will work for you. Let’s get started.

How much time do you have?

15-30 minutes a week

If all you have is 15 to 30 minutes a week, focus on a simple routine to source and publish user-generated content in a CrowdRiff gallery. 

Galleries improve engagement on your website and entice people to purchase or order based on the visuals they see. They’re an effective way to market the city to your local community or to showcase what your destination has to offer future visitors.

Keep your brand channels active

If you’ve reduced or paused your ad spend, you’ll want to keep your social media channels and website up to date. To do this, many destinations are playing active roles in their communities, curating entertaining and inspiring stories of people coming together and helping one another out. 

From Visit Oceanside who is showcasing the good work of their community to Bruce Grey Simcoe who is sharing positive content on their homepage, CrowdRiff customers are using galleries to foster local pride. 

Granted you already have a page where you want to host your gallery, all it takes is 15 minutes a week to create a CrowdRiff gallery and keep it updated. 

For example, Visit Idaho created a landing page for April craft beer month. The page features virtual events, breweries, and people enjoying their beers from home. The team promoted  #PintsUpIdaho to encourage people to share photos. Then they pulled them into this gallery. 

Here’s how to publish a gallery using hashtag-sourced content:

  1. Choose a community-related hashtag you want to track
  2. Add that hashtag to your social trackers in CrowdRiff
  3. Build a gallery using those visuals and embed it on your blog or website
  4. Update your gallery with new content weekly

Full disclosure: If you’re a first-time user of the platform, this process may take you more than 15 minutes. If that’s the case, use your first week for steps 1 and 2, and your second week for step 3. After that, updating your gallery should take no more than 10-15 minutes if you’re pulling in the right content. 

Hashtag tips:

  • Hashtag trackers only backfill the past 24 hours, so be sure to add them a week in advance.
  • Use official hashtags. For example, hashtags like #ExploreCleveland or #ThisIsCLE will bring in better content than #Cleveland. 
  • Make sure hashtags are location specific. For example, #beer will obviously get you photos of beer, but they could be from anywhere in the world. Instead, use something like #PintsUpIdaho or #EatLocalToronto.
  • You can also exclude keywords, hashtags, or usernames. This helps improve the quality and relevancy of your content. To exclude content, go to “excluded terms” under Social Trackers. 

Support local partners

Many destination marketers are also using CrowdRiff to support their local partners. If this is your top priority, spend your 15 minutes a week building a gallery using the content you pull in from your partners’ Business Accounts.

Tip: You can also use Connect to pull partners’ Stories and @mention posts into your library.

For example, Fargo-Moorhead, ND, is tracking a handful of local business partners like breweries, coffee shops, and ice cream shops. They’ve pulled some of the content into a gallery on their local businesses page. 

Here’s how to publish a gallery from partner-sourced content:

  1. Make a list of 5-10 partners you want to track 
  2. In CrowdRiff, add these to your tracked Instagram Business accounts 
  3. Build a gallery using those visuals and embed it on your blog or website
  4. Update your gallery with new content weekly

Tips: 

  • Save your partner search so that you can easily update your gallery.
  • You have a limit of 100 tracked IG Business accounts. Every week, you can add new partners (and subtract as necessary) and update your gallery.

Keep future travelers engaged

While locals play an essential role in your recovery efforts, many destinations want to keep top of mind with travelers planning future trips. The best way to do this is to find content that promotes your destination in a way that’s uplifting, inspiring, yet also respectful of mandated social distancing. 

Spend 15 minutes a week highlighting this kind of content on one of your brand channels, like your website. 

Take inspiration from North Alabama. They published a blog post with road trip itineraries for the upcoming drive market using CrowdRiff galleries for each stop.

Here’s how to publish a gallery from a hashtag or partner-sourced content:

  • Decide how you want to promote your destination in a way that’s appropriate
  • Pull in content via social trackers or Connect
  • Build a gallery with those visuals and embed it on your website or blog
  • Update your gallery with new content weekly

When selecting visuals for your gallery, focus on wide-open spaces, and stay away from large crowds, nightlighlife, and busy restaurants. 

Time-saving tips:

  • Use Sidekick, CrowdRiff’s Chrome Extension, to add visuals from Instagram straight to your library.
  • If you have multiple galleries across your site and are pressed for time, only update those on high traffic pages like your homepage. 

15 minutes a day

Here’s how you can take your efforts up a notch if you have a little more time to spare than once a week.

Beyond sourcing content and publishing it in a gallery, you can request rights to your top-performing content and use it on your social media channels. 

By leveraging what’s already working, you can grow your brand’s social media presence faster, helping you to get a leg up in what’s going to be a highly competitive travel market. 

Keep brand channels active

Say you spend one day of the week sourcing content about the community and keeping your gallery updated.

The rest of the week, take 15 minutes a day to analyze what’s performing well. Look at how many views and clicks each asset is getting, as well as your top performing assets. Then, request the rights to this content and publish it on your social media channels

Follow these steps to set up a hashtag rights group:

  1. Go to your apps panel, select the plus button and select hashtag rights app
  2. Name your group and create your approval hashtag
  3. Write out a few comments to ask for rights approval
  4. Save your group
  5. If you ever need to go back and edit your comments, navigate to the rights app and click “Manage app”

Follow these steps to request rights to your top-performing gallery assets:

  1. Click gallery insights 
  2. Analyze your top assets
  3. Request rights to your top 5-10 assets
  4. Check your “Rights-Approved Assets” stream every day when you log in
  5. When your assets are approved, you can directly publish them to your social channels

Tips for requesting rights:

  • Determine the purpose of the content you want rights for. This will help you tailor comments that increase your approval rate. 
  • Your approval hashtag is the only one that will be accepted, so make sure that’s clear in your request.  
  • You only need one comment to start using a hashtag group, but we recommend using at least 10. Remember to make your intentions clear, and include your approval hashtag. 
  • Get in the habit of requesting rights to photos and videos every day, so you’ll have a bank of content to choose from when you need it.

Support local partners

Similar to the above, review the insights for your local business gallery, get the rights to top-performing content, and post it on social media. 

Keep future travelers engaged

If your main goal is recovery, you’ll want to analyze your inspirational or “Dream Now, Visit Later” content and get the rights if you want to post on social media. Consider using advanced rights if you think you’ll use this content in ads in the future. 

Time-saving tips:

  • Did you know you can schedule your rights-approved posts to Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook right in CrowdRiff? In case the situation changes quickly, many brands aren’t scheduling content right now. But once changes are less frequent, you can schedule content to save time.

30 minutes a day

With 30 minutes a day, you’ll be able to get into a steady routine of sourcing content, keeping your website galleries and social media channels up to date with UGC, and even running photo and video contests. 

Contests are a great way to engage the community, generate a bank of user-generated content, and get people talking about your destination.  

If you know what kind of contest you want to run, getting set up should take you no longer than a week by investing 30 minutes a day. 

Keep brand channels active

If your main priority right now is creating community engagement, run a contest collecting people’s favorite memories from your destination.

This is exactly what Mesa, Arizona, did. They asked people to share photos of what the destination meant to them. People submitted their photos on the website for a chance to be featured in their For The Love of Mesa video, which will premiere in May 2020 during National Travel and Tourism Week.

Let’s assume you already have a microsite or landing page you can use for your contest. 

Follow these steps to set up a contest using Public Uploader:

  1. Choose a goal, determine your rules, hashtag (if necessary) and timeline
  2. In the main menu, click “Settings,” then “Public Uploader”
  3. Customize your Public Uploader with your name, logo and terms & conditions
  4. Click “Save” and share the link so others can upload content directly to your library 
  5. To find content added, click “Upload Assets” and search “public upload portal” 

You can choose a steering committee to help select winners, host the submissions on a CrowdRiff gallery so people can vote, or randomly select them.

And don’t forget to promote your contest on your social media channels, on your website, and in your email newsletters.

Tips for creating a public uploader:

  • Upload your branded image, so when people land on your page they get a nice branded experience. You can do this by uploading it to your brand assets in settings. 
  • If you’re running a photo contest, limit users to upload one photo at a time. 
  • The custom text field is an easy way to get additional information about the assets being uploaded like photo descriptions, locations, or general notes. 

Support local partners

To support your local partners with a contest, ask people to submit photos of their favorite meal from a local restaurant. To incentivize people, you could offer them a chance to win a gift card to their favorite takeout spot.

Though Louisville isn’t running a contest, you can take inspiration from what they’re doing on their takeout page. They’re encouraging local businesses to upload specialty menu items so locals know what’s open, what’s not, and what to order. 

If you’re not using Public Uploader for a contest, remember to allow users to upload more than one visual at a time. 

Keep future travelers engaged

You can help prepare for the next phase of recovery by gathering content to help activate local pride, and eventually, draw regional and international travelers. 

As an idea, run a contest asking people to submit videos of the first thing they’ll do when sanctions are lifted, like Visit Indy.

They’re asking people to share their #LoveIndy story to “inspire a rejuvenation of our travel industry and contribute to quickly getting the city’s 83,000 hospitality workers back in action once it is safe.”

If people submit their videos, they have a chance to be featured by the DMO. They’re also encouraging people to share the videos on their feed using the hashtag. This is an effective way to generate UGC from both a public uploader and a community-initiated hashtag. 

Tips for running your contest:

  • Give people an incentive to enter your contest. Using local gift cards as a prize can help to support local businesses, but you can also feature people on your website, in a newsletter, or in a video. 
  • If you’re asking people to share their content with a hashtag, filter entries using saved searches. 

We hope this guide has helped you find ways to maximize your time with CrowdRiff. If you’re using CrowdRiff in other ways, we’d love to know. Head to our Travel & Tourism Community Hub and tell us how you’re using CrowdRiff right now. 

Image credit: @jokeduponcheel

How the travel industry is responding to COVID-19

About the author

Julia Manoukian

Julia Manoukian is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at CrowdRiff. A former journalist, she has helped several Toronto startups raise their thought leadership profiles and scale their content efforts to influence revenue. She's passionate about storytelling, traveling, and tech.

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