Thursday, March 25, 2010

New England Travel

There are a lot of websites out there about New England travel. But there is one that is simply the best. And that's because it is managed, edited, and written by a public relations trained journalist who takes great photos and travels for the complete experience, not the quick fix. Kim Knox Beckius has been writing about New England extensively for over a decade and has authored several related books such as Backroads of New England, The Everything Family Guide to New England, and The Everything Outdoor Wedding Book. She is also the author of's New England Travel Guide which has expanded is recent years from the website format to also include a blog, Twitter (@newenglandgirl), and Facebook ( The website features popular outlets including top events, deal sheet, trip planning, and seasonal highlights.

Please visit, bookmark, explore, and share the online gem of New England -

I have worked with Kim on behalf of various clients throughout the years and along the way we realized we both earned our public relations background at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY. We finally met in person at the Ski Vermont Media Reception at Mt. Snow on Woodchuck Day in February and are both looking forward to palling around at the Vermont Travel Industry Conference at which we are both speaking.

If you work in the travel industry in Vermont, I highly suggest attending this valuable, informational, and fun; educational networking event being held April 6-8, 2010 at Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa in Stowe, Vermont.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Product Quality Reduction - Bad Company

I have been keeping my eyes and ear peeled for seeing if my prediction would come true about everyone so focused on social media that the commitment to quality starts to slip and I have seen it in my own home with products I buy! Gasp.

I do not follow large national companies and their social media because my niche market is Vermont and I firmly believe in not stretching oneself too thin. Because of this I cannot say that these companies are more focused on social media than product quality, but I can say I have recently noticed some product quality reduction that I think they should be called out for. I think it has to to do with budgets and where to cut and cutting in product quality is the worst place to do it. Luckily Vermont is too small for companies to get away with this as much - yes another reason to buy local in Vermont!

Coast Soap
- Ok, what is up with the mini sized soap bars? I have been using Coast soap since my best friend in middle school showed me how to wipe it on your clothes dry as a fabulous perfume! Once high school was through and I started buying my own soap, I transitioned from wiping it dry on clothes to buying it as my one and only shower soap and this has not wavered to this day. Recently I have been noticing the bars go much quicker than they used to and because I stock up on everything, was able to compare an old bar to a new bar - half the size with no change in price of course! Do I really have to switch soaps after exercising brand loyalty of over 20 years?

Fiber One Granola Bars - In order to keep up high costs, you simply remove a bar from the box making the count go from 6 to 5? Is this for real? The first time I noticed this I thought it was a packaging glitch, however now I see it is not. Then I realized they only had 6 in them when the product was first launching (which I purchased as a result of their strong coupon positioning). Trick 'em, hook 'em, trick 'em again. With the exception of Kudos, granola bar boxes are supposed to be 6! No kudos here!

Laundry Detergent - There are too many companies to name, but what is up with this business of the dual washing power? This is definitely just a gimmick to make you pay full price for half a bottle. Seriously. This makes me get loud and obnoxious in the grocery store. Good thing I'm going tonight - watch out Mitchezzz...

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

My Hotel Description

Hotel and other Vermont hospitality descriptions are often the brunt of jokes at the presentations I give around the state because they all use the same language and try very, very hard to tell potential visitors how "sophisticatedly unparalleled" they are "amidst the valleys of the Green Mountains." Problem is everyone describes their property/experience the same way which has always been silly, but now with SEO (search engine optimization) driving web activity and subsequently everything that directs traffic to websites, this way of describing "discerning getaways of relaxation in the Vermont countryside" is downright detrimental to the way potential guests opt for a place to say. Standing out doesn't mean being the same as everyone else and with the takeover of social and interest driven decision making, describing a Vermont travel experience or stay with a bunch of fluffy adjectives is a thing of the past - you are long overdue for an overhaul!

Our sophisticated property is nestled in the Green Mountains offering elegant accommodations in our well appointed guest rooms and suites. Our understated luxury is perfectly complimented by our Regional American cuisine featuring an organic selection of local Vermont products. We have earned the Luxury Award of Four Diamonds for ten consecutive years and are called "the premier escape for romance and ambiance" by Real Travelers Don't Read Me Magazine. Our commitment to your relaxation and serenity can be found in our selection of travel packages on our website at

However you found us, thanks for finding! Whatever you are looking for, we have no idea if you'll find it at our Vermont mountain resort, but we do hope you will try. From Vermont skiing to Vermont country stores. From Vermont products to the freshest and most locally produced food in the country. We have the best bed and breakfasts, inns, hotels, resorts, and vacation rentals in the Northeast and while we may differ from our neighbors in room decor and amenities, we all agree there is no need to visit any state other than Vermont in the fall, winter, or summer. As for spring - come for the maple syrup, mud, Vermont artisans, and to get a taste of what the real Green Mountain are all about. Forget about our website - talk us up on Twitter (@Handle)! PS - we offer a create-your-own-travel-package on Facebook (link) because we know no one likes to be told what they should do.

Note: Top searched Google keywords in bold

Hmmm - wouldn't it be interesting to see how much attention that would actually get???