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25 Moments that Mattered in 2015: To make our selection of 25 moments, we thought back to the stories that drove reader engagement and sparked discussion among both travel experts and the general public. Some stories were quick blips that represented bigger things while others were narratives that built slowly through out the year. Each one, though, spoke to where we are right now when it comes to the big business of global travel.

This year photo-centric Instagram eclipsed Twitter to claim more monthly active users than the microblogging platform–more than 400 million compared to Twitter’s 307 million.

Besides having the highest user growth rate when compared to Facebook and Twitter, Instagram also has the most engaged community. According to Forrester, 4.21% of brands’ total followers have engaged with their content in comparison to 0.03% and 0.07% of brands’ total followers on Twitter and Facebook, respectively.

Some brands have experimented with using Instagram for bookings to monetize the platform. Conrad Hotels and Resorts’ Instagram followers on mobile and desktop are able to click a link to view a microsite filled with a curated gallery of existing Instagram photos that lead to information about the property, TripAdvisor reviews and a booking widget. Also, Instagram’s launch of its new ad product carousel allowed brands to share a series of photos in one post and lead users to a mobile website of the brand’s choosing.

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Tags: 25 moments 2015, instagram, social media, twitter

Photo credit: Royal Caribbean's account on Instagram. Instagram

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