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November 12, 2005

Why RSS Works - St Barts

I spent some time this week with a very large on-line travel company talking about RSS. They're developing their RSS strategy and asked us to talk with them given the topic and applications are so broad within the travel industry. During the conversation, we started talking about specific use cases. I shared a recent experience I had in planning a vacation to the Caribbean, St Barts. I had heard a lot about St Barts via some friends and via Conde Naste magazine, but I'm pretty skeptical when it comes to information about travel destinations given I'm a bit particular to when it comes to vacation spots. I let them know that I went to Google and got a lot of information from web sites with "canned photos" and stories published by their PR people as to how great each hotel, restaurants, etc was. Of course most of the content was the establishments trying to sell themselves. I then went to a couple of chat rooms and bulletin boards which I found useless - again, most run by companies trying to sell you something. I then told them how I just simply set up a search feed (NewsGator Smart Feed) for the key work St Barts and was continually updated from people blogging about St Barts - people sharing their personal experiences, likes, dislikes, etc. Real information from real people, hmmmm. Through NewsGator I was able to review posts (article)from months ago as well as be updated as soon as a new post came in. Bingo, all the information I wanted, from real people, at my finger tips - the good, bad, and ugly. Pretty easy from there. Needless to say, the travel company we were talking to instantly got it. Sure, they're going to try to sell you something, but by personalizing the experience, it puts the power into your hands, not the hands of 3 star hotels trying to market themselves as something they're not. Of course this is just a small example of the power of RSS. BTW, if you're looking for a first class experience on St Barts, the Eden Rock at St Barts is the way to go!

November 12, 2005 in Business, Travel, Weblogs | Permalink


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