Tourism NT is the official government authority responsible for promoting the Northern Territory in Australia as a unique holiday destination. It provides everything travel-related for both interstate and international visitors to the region.
Because the Northern Territory is so large and has many points of interest, Tourism NT decided it wanted to leverage user-generated content (UGC) to help drive visitation, while also authentically representing the best of what the region has to offer.
Kate Flowers, the Creative Solutions Manager for Tourism NT, says, “We wanted to leverage the emotional connection around our brand. To do that, we wanted to capture the unique stories and images from those who are traveling the Northern Territory and showcase the special moments and connections that coming to the NT for a holiday can create.”
With the help of Stackla, Tourism NT began collecting real images and stories from people who are already traveling in the Northern Territory to promote the region as a top destination to visit in Australia.
How UGC serves Tourism NT’s Goals
In recent years, there has been a seismic shift in the amount of visual assets that marketing teams need in order to fulfill the consumer desire for authentic, personalized content at scale. The team at Tourism NT recognized this evolution and realized they needed a better solution to fulfill their growing content needs.
“Consumers are increasingly distrustful of advertising and marketing, and user-generated content serves as a cut-through for brands to deliver content that feels the most authentic to people.” – Kate Flowers, Creative Solutions Manager, Tourism NT
Before using Stackla, Tourism NT struggled to keep up with the demand for fresh visual content. They largely relied on professional photoshoots, which are expensive to procure and require a large undertaking to fill all the necessary image gaps.
When they decided to fuel their marketing content with UGC, the Tourism NT team set out to solve a few key issues with their content:
1. Cost: To reduce the budget spent on large production photoshoots.
2. Scale: To source enough imagery to cover the whole of the Northern Territory and fill gaps in content to showcase specific destinations.
3. Fresh authentic content: To showcase fresh, authentic and current images and provide users with a real visual snapshot of the unique Northern Territory destinations
As of today, using UGC visuals in its marketing has helped Tourism NT save an estimated $160,000 AUD in content costs.
Not only has leveraging user-generated content helped Tourism NT achieve its goal of affordably scaling its visual content, but UGC also helps the organization speak to consumers in a way that traditional marketing and professional imagery simply can’t.
Flowers says, “Stackla has opened up a new world of imagery that is authentic, real, relevant and current.”
How Tourism NT Uses Stackla + UGC to Fuel Its Marketing
Tourism NT works with Stackla’s team to help manage and display its best user-generated content across various marketing touchpoints—fueling its efforts to create personalized content experiences at scale.
Today, they have gained a rich library of visual content with the hashtag #NTAustralia, and they continue to actively discover, rights manage and publish content from across the social web with Stackla. So far, they have collected over 5,000 UGC images that they display across 255 website pages containing Stackla widgets on the Tourism NT website. They also have over 400 rights-approved images.
Tourism NT’s homepage and local tips page showcase beautiful imagery from real visitors to help inspire others to book travel to the region’s many destinations.
The Stackla UGC content as been exposed to 4 million annual website visitors.
Flowers says, “Our website is one of the key places for us to incorporate UGC and keep our content current and up-to-date. Some people are creating some incredible content and it’s wonderful that we can showcase in the imagery that people are out there sharing right now.”
Stackla encourages greater engagement on the website and in 9 months there were over 403,000 engagements with Stackla content across the website.
Tourism NT also prominently features UGC across their social media channels—such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook—to grow their followers and keep them engaged.
In addition to web and social, Tourism NT leverages the engaging UGC curated in Stackla to power its email campaigns. Featuring real visitor images within emails (like the one below) help bring their destinations to life for email subscribers.
Because the region is so vast and there is so much content to source, the creative team set up filters and rules within Stackla to help ensure the content coming in is only that which is most relevant to Tourism NT’s initiatives.
Flowers says when examining what kind of visuals to publish, “We first look at which images stand out that we can add to the website, which helps to fill content gaps and provide a visual overview of each of our destinations. Secondly, we look for images that we feel are the strongest and will best suit/represent our brand, and these are the images we seek approval to promote further.”
What’s next for Tourism NT and UGC
Flowers says, “While we have been using Stackla for over a year, we are always working to maximize our use of the platform since UGC has become such an important tool within our marketing.”
Tourism NT is currently in the process of integrating Stackla with its broader digital asset manager (DAM) to make the library of UGC visuals they’ve acquired more accessible across the organization—specifically to the social media team.
The creative team at Tourism NT have also set their sights on using Stackla’s map functionality, so browsers on the site can see specific content from destinations on a map.
Plus, they hope to take a more proactive approach to UGC and grow their list of authentic content creators with Stackla’s Organic Influencers tool.
Flowers says, “Stackla continues to give us opportunities to fill gaps in our content. Because people are already out there creating some amazing content, it’s a great way for us to be able to tap into that, to showcase what people are creating, and to use it for our own content marketing as a more compelling and current way to drive tourism.”
Hero image credit: Tourism NT/@lady_fortheland