TLabs Showcase - Trip ElatedNewsBy Kevin May | September 23, 2010Share This article was originally published on TLabs Showcase focus on startups featuring London, UK-based hotel review service Trip Elated.Who and what are you (including personnel and backgrounds)?Amanda Brown (resident hotel reviewer) – I am a well-travelled industry professional and have notched up a pretty-impressive tally of destination and hotel reviews.Before becoming a hotel reviewer, I have worked at independent travel agents where I trained to use systems such as Galileo. I have also worked in numerous B2B sales roles and as part of guest relations at a country retreat.Trip Elated is a travel review website dedicated to upbeat hotel reviews. Uniquely, we only show reviews attracting positive feedback – the business is supported by a team of freelancers and travel writers.What financial support did you have to launch the business?Trip Elated is privately funded.What problem are you trying to solve?We believe travellers are tired of trawling through a constant array of conflicting information and bad experiences.Trip Elated is flying the flag for happy travelling and wants travellers who have had a good experience or discovered a hidden gem to get on-board.Describe the business, core products and services?Trip Elated unique sales proposition is its focus on hotels (accommodation providers) attracting positive feedback. That means, unlike other travel review sites, holidaymakers can share their experiences without tripping up on negative or conflicting comments.Of course we want our reviews to be objective and that includes mentioning anything that fell short of expectations. But if the accommodation was not up to scratch, then it's probably not right for Trip Elated.The Trip Elated team will be re-visiting its favourite hotels, resorts and country retreats over the coming months and recording upbeat video reviews starting with the famous May Fair hotel in London.This new service means that holidaymakers will be able to check out where to stay before checking in. We provide this start-to-finish video review service to hotels, B&Bs and resorts, worldwide.Who are your key customers and users at launch?Consumers (travellers) and hotels (accommodation providers)Did you have customers validate your idea before investors?Yes we did. Market research confirmed the need for Trip ElatedWhat is the business AND revenue model, strategy for profitability?Trip Elated is a travel website providing consumers (travellers) free access to a database of hotel reviews attracting positive feedback.To businesses, Trip Elated is the perfect partner, offering fantastic opportunities to showcase products and services in a fun and informative way. Revenue comes from companies who pay to advertise across the site, whilst benefiting from the positive association.Reviews uploaded by the ‘traveller’ (consumer) are non-profitable. We do not pay the traveller for the content, nor does the hotel pay us to be featured– this is a free service to all.We do charge for our professional reviews, which are more in-depth and of course written by an expert.It has been decided that we charge a small upfront administration fee to any hotel that requests ‘a professional’ review (this will cover the professional reviewers fee)Successful properties (those that made the grade) are required to pay a small listing fee. Properties attracting negative reviews will not be asked for any further money nor will their reviews be published – they will however, be given written feedback by the reviewer.Our hotel video review service is also a chargeable line as there is much time and effort involved in producing these professional style pieces –BUT- everything is done in-house, so over-heads are at a low and we can therefore offer very reasonable prices.SWOT analysis – strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats?Strengths: Visually appealing website.Trip Elated’s “positive” attitude is evident in all that has been and will be achieved.Only show positive reviews which is of particular interest to both hotels and travellers.Easily defined and reachable target market. Weaknesses: As a new brand, we need to generate awareness and traffic Opportunities: Growing consumer dissatisfaction with negative and often conflicting reviews, creates a demand for Trip Elated Threats: The global economic downturn may result in a recession if this happens UK consumers will be less likely to travel abroad. This could affect some relationships with clients overseas however, will strengthen our UK client base.Who advised you your idea isn't going to be successful and why didn't you listen to them?Fortunately, we’ve not received any comments like this.What is your success metric 12 months from now?Develop strategic alliances with travel related businesses both nationally and internationally.Position Trip Elated as a household brand; making it an integral part of consumers, travel related decisions.Develop the Trip Elated brand to become a recognised and respected industry standard. NB: TLabs Showcase is part of the wider TLabs project from Tnooz.