Not exactly – in fact not at all – but it is one of the first questions that I get asked when pitching TripTide to new investors.
First and foremost we provide a service –part of which comprises a customised transactional website for a rapidly expanding number of partners around the globe. Each hub comprises the features and functions of some of the most successful online community and ecommerce models on the market. Members and visitors will recognise a bit of Facebook, a bit of Amazon, a bit of Groupon, a bit of TripAdvisor, a bit of Expedia, a bit of Flickr and so on. They will also see something unrecognisable to the travel industry and that is the first online community travel hubs on the market to be delivered on a region by region basis.
We invented TripTide because there was not enough granular, local, current, compelling travel information on the web and certainly nothing that harnessed the power of community building, social networking and global sharing successfully utilised in other industries. It has taken three years effort from developers, designers, user experience experts and travel specialists to deliver the vision but that’s only part of the story.
Our mission is to deliver local travel knowledge to a global audience allowing suppliers, content publishers, videographers, journalists etc to share a common platform . We are about to launch TripTide hubs in our third and fourth countries respectively.
Our business model is a little different as well and we provide a full suite of support services through exclusive partnerships – only one per region – including technology, branding, customisation, ecommerce, billing, third party integration and SEO to global destinations such as Australia, Southern Africa, Canada and Spain. This allows the partners to do what they are best at and recruit local product and content while we find a global marketplace for them.
So at first glance perhaps we do resemble some of the better travel sites on the market but a little more exploration will reveal a unique and absorbing proposition. Time will tell the full impact of the TripTide butterfly effect – but just another website – definitely not!