"You almost trust micro-influencers more, because they haven't sold out yet."
"I don't call myself an influencer. I might call myself a content creator."
"People go there just for the 'gram - they don't care about the culture and history of the place. It can be really damaging."
"I don't relate to travel influencers who get paid to travel. Because that's not my life."
"I trust a person more when I relate to them as a person - their interests, their life experiences."
Over Zoom dinner conversations with friends (#lockdownlife), and in user research with travellers and content creators alike. You know what we're talking about. The "Instagram aesthetic". The "influencer lifestyle". The beautifully curated feeds that at their best are wonderful inspiration boards, and at worst are over-edited, over-curated, over-sponsored, and well, just awkward. It's easy to find yourself caught in a cycle of same-same travel content - scrolling, screen-shotting, scrolling - looking for the ever elusive "real, authentic, relatable".
It’s time to shake things up. No - we’re not talking about the edited vs unedited versions of your photos. Let’s start talking about real travel stories. Let’s start celebrating diversity in travel content. Let’s start asking for, and sharing travel stories, that actually helps us discover something new and little known about a place, or that could help improve someone else’s travel experience. Let’s get to know the person behind the travel story.
Everyone has a travel story to tell. And too often these stories don't get heard. We want to make sure they do.
So we turn to 8 creators to weigh in on this, with our very first Q&A series - Not Just A Pretty Feed. With different creative, professional, and cultural backgrounds, we go beyond their feed, to learn how travel has shaped their lives, influenced their work, and what being real in the world of travel content means to them.
We’d love for you to join us in this conversation. If you know a travel creator, or travel brand who you think is doing an awesome job sharing real travel stories, we'd love to hear from you! Drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.