I wrote about Mark Warner and their travel PR strategy not long after Madeleine McCann went missing. It was a tough time for them and I think they handled it well.

But I wonder now, in hindsight, if they wish they had pulled out of Praia da Luz soon after those sad events.

It is a great place. I took a tennis course there for the Sunday Times and enjoyed it very much. But the spectre of the Madeleine McCann case hangs over the resort and refuses to go away – particularly now that British police are combing the undergrowth and increasing their on-site investigations.

It is hard not to feel some sympathy for holidaymakers in Praia da Luz.

Mark Warner would rather refer to the resort as Ocean Club Beach Resort but clearly most people can make the connection and – from the Mark Warner prices, which tend to be a bit lower than at their other resorts – it must be one of their hardest sells.

I don’t suppose that will not change as long as it stays in the news pages rather than the holiday section.

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Developing a travel PR campaign for affiliate clients presents a particular challenge. After all they do not own their own hotels, boats, planes, they do not sell their own package holidays and most of the time they do not even mind who you travel with.

That leaves us a bit short of stories on the PR side.

Travel affiliate clients just want traffic, which they can then convert to clickers to send on their way to happy merchants in exchange for a slice of the pie.

There’s very little there for a traditional travel PR to get their teeth into. Or is there?

Andy Barr MD at 10Yetis has considerable experience representing affiliates – most relevantly to us the travel site Sunshine.co.uk.

I asked him to share his views of travel PR for affiliate marketing. [click to continue…]

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Reputation Plus: Tweeting an Eye on Your Business

Rosemary Gallagher has written a good piece about Reputation Plus the real time customer service in today’s Scotland on Sunday. Businesses will be able to monitor their reputation on social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook, and react in “real time” using a service launched this month by Scottish company Reputation Plus. Set up […]

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Found: The Travel PR’s Guide to SEO

There has been discussion on Twitter over the last few days on the role of SEO in contemporary Travel PR. I am massively biased in this; my reflex action on opening a new travel site is to view source code. And I have a keyboard shortcut which turns H and 1 into <h1></h1> in a […]

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Present tense: A look back at the future of travel PR

By way of yanking this blog back out of hibernation, I thought I would recap a guest post I wrote for Travolution last year. It pretty much sums up what I thought then and still think now of traditional travel PR. For the sake of our clients we need to totally rethink travel PR in […]

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Thummit: when everyone really is a critic

While researching restaurant reviews for the Sunday Times – and by researching I mean spilling gravy down my shirt – a manager would often stop by and ask how everything was. “Fine” I would say. “Read about it on Sunday,” I would think. “Thanks,” I would say. If it had been awful – if maggots […]

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Google Alerts feeds

Google Alerts has a new option: you can now subscribe to feeds instead of receiving periodic email messages.

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Lights, camera, sell a holiday! Google's research into online travel buying

Google’s travel team in the United States has just posted a recording of their travel research webinar from earlier this month. YouTube: Research Road Trip: A Traveler’s Road to Decision. The sound quality is terrible: it sounds as if contractors are working overhead. But there are nuggets for anyone interested in online travel buying behaviour […]

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