Isle of Eriska Hotel and Spa Blog

Enough tech blogs already. It’s interesting to see how small businesses are using emerging technolgies as marketing tools. Here’s an interesting blog I’ve found.

Beppo Buchanan-Smith owns and runs a luxury hotel on the Isle of Eriska in Scotland. It’s a high-class place that has all the charms you would expect: the big house, a good restaurant, beautiful scenery, walks, hunting and golf. It’s been a family business for more than 30 years, but Beppo has embraced the internet and has a good website and a fascinating blog.

You can find the blog here.

Beppo took the plunge on the advice of a friend who is an internet expert, to achieve two aims: to mark the hotel out from the competition and to improve the website’s search engine ranking. “I write 4 times a week,” says Beppo, “and it probably takes me 15 minutes to do each time but I try and plan the blogs and whenever something happens try and
catch it with the camera.”

But is it working? Beppo has no doubts: “the last set of figures showed the blog as being one of the top referrers to our site.”

He also uses the blog as “a conduit to the market” because it “gives a more human face to the business. A regular weather report is handy for guests with an imminent arrival and many just flick through it to see what we are up to. Guests often mention the blog when they phone or when they arrive.”

And Beppo has been surprised by how easy it’s been. “I am most definitely not a techie so the system had to be easy,” says Beppo. “We use Typepad (www.typepad.com) which is pretty easy to set up and I had some help to give it a slightly more corporate look.”

But it’s not a serious, fusty blog and actually not very corporate at all. In many ways the charm of Beppo’s blog is the way it brings the everyday life of the hotel and island to life. He will talk about resurfacing the tennis court; remind you of the romance of the wonderful island or the antics of the island’s animals (wild and domestic). It brings the hotel closer and whets your appetite for a relaxing weekend stay.

He’s going to keep on blogging and make it even more interactive. “Some guests even send me pictures for the blog and the next phase of the blog will be to have staff writing entries.”

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