User Generated Content for Luxury Hotels

Hotel Marketing

January 24, 2024
User Generated Content for Luxury Hotels

What is UGC?

UGC stands for User-generated content, it’s original and authentic content created by your luxury hotel’s guests, employees and even UGC creators. This content can come in various different formats, including photos, videos, reviews and even testimonials. It is then published on social media, showcasing a more honest and authentic insight into what your hotel has to offer, from the perspective of a guest. Which compared to professional photography helps build trust and loyal community.

Why UGC is so valuable?

UGC helps build trust in your luxury hotel

Potential guests, and especially ones from the younger generations, are now more inclined to trust and book a stay after seeing other people’s experiences at your luxury hotel. Whether it’s through social media videos and photos or reviews and blogs. User-generated content offers a solution that builds trust and showcases the authentic side of your luxury hotel.

By using authentic user-generated content, whether it’s on your social media channels or website, you can build trust with potential guests, highlighting the fact that your previous guests loved your hotel enough to take the time to rave about it online. Therefore UGC can be considered as authentic social proof that your guests who haven’t visited your luxury hotel are truly missing out.

UGC provides you with reusable content

Aside from the trust-building aspect, UGC offers immense value through its versatility. The amazing content created by your guests can be used to illustrate blogs and your website, encourage engagement on your social media platforms, and even be used for your ads or email newsletters.

On top of that, you get to reuse this content on different occasions and social media platforms, as some of your audience may have missed it the first time you posted it.

UGC helps grow a community of loyal guests

Utilising user-generated content provides your guests the opportunity to participate in the growth of your brand and be recognised for it. When done right, it strongly enhances brand loyalty, as by showcasing and crediting guests for their UGC you create a more personal relationship, ensuring they feel seen and valued as a guest and eventually building a loyal community.

UGC also helps create engagement, not only through comment section conversations but also through users resharing the content. Oftentimes, the UGC creator will want to share the content you have highlighted on your hotel’s social media platforms, with their own circle of family and friends. This introduces you to people who may not have visited your hotel previously, thus increasing the size of your audience.

UGC is a cost-effective option for gaining content

User-generated content offers a cost-effective opportunity to attain content for your social media platforms and website. This is because unlike professional photography and videography, UGC doesn’t require you to invest large amounts into hiring professional teams to produce this content. You simply need to encourage and credit your loyal guests for their content, most of whom will be excited to be featured on your platforms!

How to use UGC

Make sure to ask for permission and give credit where it’s due

Having permission to re-use someone else’s content is crucial, therefore you should always ask before publishing your guest’s content. Using the content of your guests without requesting permission can often backfire and be considered impolite by your audience.

Once you have gained appropriate permission from the original creator, make sure you show your appreciation and excitement about sharing their content. And of course - give credit where it’s due. If you are re-sharing an Instagram post, make sure you tag the creator’s Instagram handle in the caption. The same goes for other social media platforms. And if you are sharing the user-generated content on your website, ask your guests how they would prefer to be referred to - as some people may prefer to not have their full name in the credits.

Once permission is given, reuse the content strategically

Make sure you re-use the UGC strategically, as unfortunately, it isn’t enough to simply re-share the content once. It is important to make sure that any imagery, videos or testimonials play into the bigger picture and work alongside your marketing strategy, to ensure the most effective results. Aside from performance concerns, dealing with large amounts of UGC can be truly overwhelming, so by following a strategy you will be able to organise your workflow when dealing with large volumes of content.

Showcase it proudly

Showcasing UGC on social media brings great value but adding a dedicated UGC gallery to your website can help you showcase this content to brand-new visitors, who are not aware of your social media channels. This dedicated UGC gallery makes it easily accessible for potential guests to see how previous visitors and loyal guests feel about your rooms, facilities and service.

On top of that, you can also use this content in your email campaigns and newsletters, thus encouraging your guests to sign up, in case their photo or testimonial is highlighted.

How to encourage UGC?

If you have never utilised UGC before it may be difficult to know where to start and how to attain this content. However, getting your guests to share their creations with you can be quite straightforward - all it takes is simple communication, encouraging guests to share their experiences at your luxury hotel. You also can motivate your guests to share their UGC with you in ways such as:

  • Social media post encouraging them to share their content and tag you on it.
  • Follow-up email after their stay, showcasing that you’d love to see what your guest has captured during their time at your hotel. You can even go as far as offering a discount on their next visit.
  • Organise a social media competition, where guests need to share pictures or videos in hopes of winning something you are offering.
  • Leave a note in their room, encouraging them to capture and share UGC. Offering them something for it, like a free drink or dessert in a restaurant will usually bring better results.
  • Use branded hashtags on your socials and encourage your guests to use them too. Showcase your branded hashtag on brochures, menus, and other appropriate place

It’s important to encourage your guests to share their content, as sometimes some of them may feel like they shouldn’t post, especially if your hotel has an exclusive aura. And most often, picturesque, unique and beautifully decorated places will attract people to take pictures naturally. As long as you make it easy for guests to join the conversation, you’ll cut out any pain points and see a surge in engagement and content.