Stunning nature photography, new airline destinations, and an odd five and a half hour video were exciting news that contributed to social conversations this past week.

Each Friday, we call out travel brands that have stronger than usual activity on social media. Using SkiftIQ, we’re able to track current performance versus past (60-day averages, unless otherwise noted) as well as notice spikes in activity that demonstrate a brand either has a viral hit on its hands, or a public relations mess to clean up.

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The latest social activity on SkiftIQ for the week ending October 17, 2014:

1. Southwest Airlines on Facebook

Dallas Love Field welcomed two airlines to its terminals this past Tuesday. Southwest Airlines was one of them. This was not the news that impacted the stratospheric gain of followers on Facebook, as one might expect. Instead, its three-day flash sale made the most impact. Despite its link not working to book the discounted fares, the airline still locked in a tremendous amount of new followers. A 550% spike with a broken link is a testament to brand loyalty.

2. Tourism and Events Queensland on Instagram

From October 13-16, this tourism board uploaded user-generated content that included blooming flora, a sea animal and sparkling wine from Influencers such as Elisa Detrez (37,000+ followers), Jewel Zee (70,000+ followers), and Graham Michael Freeman (16,300+ followers). All three of these influencers participated in Tourism and Events Queensland’s Ultimate Instameet that took place on October 4. The momentum in followers moved higher each day, resulting in an 97% increase, pushing its 482 Followers/Day Average to 950 Followers/Day in those four days.

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Sunrise beauty in Port Douglas. #thisisqueensland by @jewelszee in @tropicalnorthqueensland for @flightcentreau

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3. Air Canada on Instagram

Air Canada used Instagram to provide coverage of the arrival of a new Boeing 787 Dreamliner, which resulted in gaining new English- and French-speaking Instagram followers for five consecutive days. Each day, it gained an average of 50 new fans, and raised its 62 Followers/Day average by 80%.

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Here it is! The first air-to-air picture of our #Boeing787 #Dreamliner. A beauty, wouldn’t you say? #avgeek #instagramaviation // La voici! Première photo de notre #Boeing 787 Dreamliner en plein vol. Splendide, n’est-ce pas? #aviation View on Instagram

4. Virgin America on Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube

Conversation on social media surrounded Virgin America’s first service at Dallas Love Field. Followers rose by 18% on Twitter to 536 Followers/Day from October 14 to 16. The airline tweeted a photo gallery tweet of its check-in gate and got a few users inviting them to fly to Sacramento and Houston.

The five and a half hour long video with creepy blah-faced life-size dolls was uploaded to YouTube on October 15. In the past two days it had close to 170,000 views — the sixth most popular Virgin America video. The subscribers didn’t rise with the viewership, but that was to be expected. What was a surprise was the jump in Instagram followers for two days from one photo — a shot from inside the plane mid-flight with the wingtip styled after the American flag. Its Instagram Followers grew by 73% on top of its 82 Followers/Day Average on October 15 and 16.

5. British Airways on Instagram

British Airways posted one photo from an Instagram account dedicated to plane spotting to co-promote its new Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Although there was no other lead content from Facebook or Twitter to direct its audience to Instagram, its account rose by 200 new followers, a 58% increase.

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Thanks to @LONDONSPOTTER for capturing this impressive image of one of our 787s landing in #London

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Photo Credit: Three-day flash sale on one-way fares. Southwest Airlines / Facebook