Blog Spotlight with Kerry Law, editor of Goodtrippers
Whether you’re planning a round-the-world backpacking trip, or a weekend break; are on a gap year or looking for a family-friendly holiday, browse Good Stays, Good Eats, Good Work and Good Fun for recommended accommodation, restaurants, tours, trips and volunteering projects.
Tell us about your blog, how did you get started? Why did you choose your subject?
I’ve always been interested in eco-friendly living, and I’ve loved travel from an early age so it’s a great way to combine the two in an online magazine. ‘Green’ and responsible travel is becoming increasingly mainstream but there is still a lot of unregulated ‘voluntourism’ (tour operators running overseas volunteering projects that do more harm than good for local communities and wildlife), and ‘green wash’ (businesses purporting to be eco-friendly when they’re only delivering the required industry standard). Goodtrippers only features genuinely responsible or eco-friendly travel options, usually reviewed by independent travellers, or trusted experts, who have experienced it themselves and want to recommend it to others who care about the impact of their travel. It’s not just for those adventurous round-the-world trips or year-long volunteering projects (although we feature plenty of those). It’s also for the weekender, daytripper or family looking for eco-friendly places to stay, places to eat, or things to do.
How do you source content for your blog?
Usually it’s places or events I’ve experienced myself, but Twitter is a great source of information. I also rely on PRs or companies to get in touch with me directly with relevant ideas that they think will be of interest to the Goodtrippers reader.
Do you write reviews? How many people read your reviews?
Yes – most of the content is review-based (for accommodation, eating out, volunteering projects) but I prefer to call them ‘recommendations’ (we don’t feature anything we don’t like!) so readers can be confident that everything they read about on Goodtrippers is recommended. To keep it credible we always try and include a ‘Be aware that…’ line or two: nothing is perfect (an eco lodge may be in a very remote location so not great for those who want a choice of restaurants and bars; a volunteering project may offer only shared sleeping quarters, again, not everyone’s cup of tea…). We also include the ‘Good’ credentials: bullet points of what makes that hotel, cafe or tour particularly ‘good’.
How did you build a following for your blog?
Social media is great for driving traffic. Goodtrippers is active on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and we’re increasing our Google+ posts. I’ve found that running competitions can really help to boost traffic (so I always welcome competition prizes for potential cross-promotion!), and I’m planning on introducing a regular newsletter very soon.
Are you a PR friendly blog? Do you accept contributions and content for your blog?
Being a PR myself, I’m very PR friendly! I know what it’s like from both sides so always happy to hear from PRs representing eco-friendly hotels/lodges/campsites, organic restaurants/food markets, responsible tour operators and eco-friendly travel products. I only ask that PRs pitch ideas that are genuinely eco-friendly/responsible and that they read the website’s content first to get a feel for what we publish and the kind of detail we need.
How best do you like to be approached by PRs?
Best to email me via email@example.com. You could also tweet @Goodtrippers but email allows more description and detail.
Blogging is great because….?
It’s about creating something that I know I, and many others, want to read! Once you’re clear on your angle, it’s fun to hear about new events, places and products that fit the Goodtrippers ethos. It’s about spreading the word and showing that eco-friendly and responsible holidays need not be dull and worthy – you can enjoy the fun, adventure and luxury too!