5 Staycation Ideas to Inspire Your DMO's Next Campaign

October 6, 2020 Julia Manoukian

As a DMO, you’ve probably started to think about how to promote staycations to support your local community.

Well, travelers are thinking the same thing. A recent survey by Farmers found that 74% of drivers want to stick close to home when they're traveling. Even the search term “staycation” has spiked on Google over the last few months.

Staycations are a great opportunity to promote your partners, market less-known experiences, and build your destination brand with locals. User-generated content is the best way to share both the most authentic and up-to-date representation of your destination right now.

Want to learn firsthand how three of these campaigns were developed from start to finish? Sign up for our webinar below!

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1 | Feature photos from locals on your Instagram Story

Finding new content is top of mind for almost every DMO. Build a library of photos and promote under-the-radar things to do at your destination by simply asking.

Visit Albuquerque is asking locals for COVID-19 safe staycation photos to feature on their Instagram for a takeover. All people need to do is swipe up to upload their images via Collector, a portal that allows DMOs to get visuals from their audience into their CrowdRiff library.

They even created an Instagram story template so people can tag their favorite businesses for staycation ideas. 

Why we love it: It’s simple and effective — any destination can do this. If you don’t have CrowdRiff, ask people to email their visuals to you. 

2 | Put together themed staycations for every season

Every season comes with unique colors and activities. Decatur Morgan County Tourism is tapping into this by promoting seasonal, themed staycations. The website is currently focused on fall but the team is already hard at work on winter ideas!

The site features UGC powered by CrowdRiff to display locally-approved fall activities and places to eat. Google Locations enriches the photos so people can see up-to-date hours and location information. 

Though staycations are traditionally geared towards residents, the DMO isn’t leaving anyone out. Travelers can drop by the visitor center after their stay and provide proof of their stay for a free gift.

Why we love it: Because your partners will love it! Decatur Morgan County Tourism uses Connect to pull their partners’ Stories, @mentions, and tags directly into their CrowdRiff library. This increases the variety of content they have available for every season, making it faster and easier to swap out content on a regular basis (and support their partners in the process!). 

3 | Create and share stories from local ambassadors

In the post-COVID-19 era of tourism, many DMOs are turning to their local ambassador programs to market the city to locals. 

Tourism Saskatchewan has done a superb job this with their #ExploreSask campaign. The goal is to encourage residents to get out and explore less known regions around the province.

Content Coordination Specialist Jenelle Jakobsen reached out to non-traditional influencers and people who lived in the community who had a fair number of followers. They gave the ambassadors different themes to work with, with an underlying message of embracing change. They’re sharing the stories via blog posts and videos on YouTube.

Just take a look at this mini-wanderer who Jenelle found through CrowdRiff. She convinced him and his mom to participate in a story about discovering roadside attractions. 

Since they’re not spending money on ads, they were able to allocate budget to facilitate the ambassadors’ work. 

Why we love it: We love this idea for a few reasons. For one, it supports local creators like musicians who can’t tour right now. For two, it adds more diverse voices to their marketing efforts. For three, it helps locals (and future visitors) discover less explored parts of the province.

4 | Showcase your destination in a new light

Just like visitors, your locals make decisions on where to go and what to do based on the visuals they see. One way to get people out and exploring your destination is to show them what it looks like from a fresh perspective. 

On their fall colors page, Visit Anchorage uses a CrowdRiff gallery with rights-approved UGC to showcase jaw-dropping photos and videos of the local landscape. Calls to action on images guide people deeper into the site so they can book relevant experiences, like trips to see the aurora. They also include a link to Collector so people can upload their own visuals. 

Why we love it: It’s no wonder the page is a hit on Visit Anchorage’s social media channels. It’s functional, guiding people to book relevant activities or upload content of their own, and just downright visually appealing! 

5 | Run a contest to win a staycation package

What better way to collect content for your next campaign than by running a contest? 

Tourism Prince George is asking people to share their local adventures for a chance to win a staycation package. They’re using Collector so people can upload their photo and video submissions.

They’re also using the page to promote staycation packages for people with different interests.

Why we love it: This content is a great example of encouraging residents to go out and spend money in the destination while also encouraging more local UGC creation. It's also a clever way to promote staycation packages to people while they're on the page.

Using CrowdRiff for your next staycation campaign

No matter what kind of staycation campaign you’re running, you’ll need new content to support it. Use CrowdRiff to source, get the rights to, and publish relevant, authentic UGC across your website, social media channels, email, and more. 

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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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