seedlingsPhoto and video technology have evolved extensively in the past year. Virtual reality, Facebook 360-degree photos and video, Snapchat and Instagram Stories all show travelers there are new ways to discover destinations.

Sometimes turning to established content creators makes the most sense for brands or travelers to create these videos, while in other circumstances turning to new talent from local photographers, freelance videographers or budding artists better aligns with the image a brand wants to encapsulate.

These five startups seek help from the consumer and traveler to help brands build their visual identities and infuse their properties and destinations with new forms of creative content.

Flipagram allows travelers to create stories from photos and video taken on their mobile devices during trips to share among their social networks.

>>SkiftTake: Travelers want to tell stories of their trips and make them engaging for their friends and family on social media. Still, many travelers don’t want to share every single photo or video that they take during a trip, which is one of the aims of Flipagram.

Pommtree lets travelers publish their user-generated travel videos. Travelers can search and discover new destinations to visit and watch videos portraying life in various locations.

>>SkiftTake: YouTube still hasn’t built up a platform to leverage the millions of travel- related videos on the site. Travelers are basically left searching for a needle in a haystack if they want to see a video showing a specific thing about a specific place. Pommtree seeks to solve this problem by letting travelers search for videos shot in Central Park or on Bondi Beach, for example. The challenge is competing with YouTube’s name recognition with travelers and changing their inclinations from uploading to YouTube to putting their videos on Pommtreel. That’s a daunting challenge.

Tinflur matches tourism brands with influencers who speak to their potential customers. The startup analyzes and creates a tourism board’s ideal customer profile from its marketing goal and uses it to match the perfect bloggers based on interests, content, location.

>>SkiftTake: Many tourism boards spend too much time and money with social influencers who may not be the best fit for their target markets and need to locate the right people to work with that meet their existing marketing goals.

Ascape is a curated mobile platform for high-quality virtual reality travel content produced by its team as well as other carefully selected content producers from around the world. It uses its own proprietary virtual reality player, which provides smooth playback of high resolution 4K spherical videos and real-time positional sound.

>>SkiftTake: One of the sticking points with virtual reality is that these 360-degree videos can’t show travelers something they can already see on Google or Instagram. They need to make destinations feel like they’re telling a new story that wasn’t possible before.

Alleys offers crowdsourced video navigation solutions for destinations that help travelers find their way around cities using interactive maps and directions.

>>SkiftTake: Though paper maps aren’t dead, we’d like to think more experienced travelers are looking for something a little cooler to help them find their way around a city. Making maps as interactive and live as possible helps people find what they’re looking for faster.

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