2020 Social Media Tourism Trends

As we approach the end of another year and our team begins to create strategic marketing plans for upcoming campaigns, we’ve been talking new ideas, fresh content and – of course – the latest social media tourism trends for 2020. We know looking towards rising trends is a great way to keep your audience engaged and provide continued value along the lines of the content you are trying to promote.

2020 Social Media Tourism Trends

We’ve heard for years that video is continuing to rise – and that trend isn’t going away in 2020. But here’s a few more to keep an eye on next year that are relevant to the travel and tourism industry:

Mental Health and Social Media

If there is a “biggest trend of the year”, this is it. Mental health is having a moment in the Western world, and many people are taking seriously the impact their mindset has on their overall health. And as it turns out, social media isn’t that good for most of us.

More and more, people are finding social media to be a place filled with unrealistic images, carefully curated snapshots, and negative comments. Social media is addictive and spending our time scrolling through images that make us feel bad about our own lives can have a negative impact on our overall quality of life. This has sprouted a movement to delete – or at least detox from social media. One in three adults is reducing their time on social media platforms.

In response, platforms are pushing to make social media a better, more positive place to be. People are looking for more productive ways to spend their time, and platforms are answering by pushing genuine authentic engagement between people, and reducing posts that waste time. One (possibly jarring) example of this is Instagram slowly hiding likes.

This translates to content in a variety of ways. Influencers are posting “real” snapshots of the unglamorous side of their lives, captions are getting longer and more inspirational, and we’re photoshopping ourselves and our bodies less and less. Whatever content you share, ask yourself if there is truly value in it to your audience. Is it unnecessarily edited?  Are you deliberating hiding a “flaw” that could be an opportunity to connect?

Embrace the human side of business on social media – and your audience (and the algorithm) will thank you.

Ephemeral Content will Continue to Rise

Today’s social media user wants content, they want a lot of it, and they want it to be easy to consume.  Instagram stories boasts 500 million daily users and Snapchat isn’t far behind with 190 million daily users. Business use of these platforms are also increasing with 64% of marketers using it or planning to do so in the next year.

So, what does this mean? Stories provide a place for brands to authentically connect with their audience in a less edited way. Stories don’t have any of the photo-shopped perfection we find so much in our feed, rather they’re a “stream of consciousness” with content posted on the fly. More often than not, people are hopping onto stories to share their day-to-day lives, struggles, rants, frustration, and excitement.

There’s a more authentic, less edited feel to stories that make them so popular, and likely one of the reason’s they’ve experienced 15x the growth of other social media feeds since 2017. With less room for editing, they can be positive space for brands to connect with their audiences in a genuine way.

Use stories to show your audience a glance behind the scenes, tease an exciting project, or bypass the algorithm and let your audience know about a new post or product.

Pinterest as a Search Engine

If your destination doesn’t have a presence on Pinterest, your 2020 marketing plan is the perfect time to incorporate it. Pinterest is becoming more search engine than social media platform, so users act differently when engaging with brands than they would on Facebook or Instagram.

Pinterest is a planning platform, with 75% of pinterest users seeking a new product or idea, compared to just 55% on other platforms. Simply put, people are turning to Pinterest to help with decisions on how to spend their money, whether it be on a vacation, house renovation, recipe ingredients or new outfit. With women as over 80% of daily users, brands have a unique opportunity to touch their audience when they’re actively seeking information. In fact, brands are finding a 1.3x higher return on Pinterest than on traditional search platforms.

In short, think simple, authentic, consumable content when looking at social media tourism trends. Audience want feel good, do good, and engage further with your brand- give them opportunities to do so. And pull out that iPhone for video content too – it’s a surefire way to capture attention and it’s not going away anytime soon.