This blog post is an assignment for a Social Media and Analytics class I’m taking (“write about an influencer in your industry”). Feel free to skip it, unless you do want to learn a little bit about the history of TripAdvisor, which is interesting, actually.
I feel like Dudley Dursley telling Mr. Mason, “We had to write an essay about our hero at school, Mr. Mason, and I wrote about you.” when I say I can’t imagine traveling without TripAdvisor, but it’s true – we consult TripAdvisor every time we are planning a trip.
I remember stumbling upon the TripAdvisor site years ago, when it was still in its infancy. There wasn’t much to it, and I think it was even before they had text ads.
Back then TripAdvisor was still just a travel search engine that Stephen Kaufer and Langley Steinert built after Kaufer “could not find any place on the internet to get the real story about places he wanted to visit with his wife.”
“Reviews of hotels and attractions?” I thought after looking at the site, “What a brilliant idea! But… what is their business model? How are they going to make money on that?”