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Internet startup Travelistic.com - which aims to be the YouTube for travellers - launched yesterday, headed up by one-time CEO and president of MTVi.
Travelistic combines user-generated video with professionally produced programming, some of which is exclusive. The self-funded company itself plans to move into content creation, with a travel-themed 'video podcast' in the offing.
Diversion Media built the website using Ruby on Rails, harnessing the Google Maps API in the process to make it easy for users to browse videos by location, in a visual way. Users can also search for videos by tags.
All in all it looks pretty good. We spoke to CEO Nicholas Butterworth to find out a bit more...
What does Travelistic.com offer that sets it apart from its rivals?
We think video is going to be a big part of the online travel experience, so there is lots of room for different players. It’s still very early in the space, so we all need to experiment to find out what works best.
Where did the idea come from to start a travel video site?
We started with the idea of creating video-driven sites for different consumer niches. A combination of passion and market research led us to travel.
What are the business goals of the website and how will it attract traffic?
We’re buying some traffic from Google, so we are not averse to some marketing spend. But most of our traffic is coming through editorial coverage or word-of-mouth referrals.
We’re hoping to get some organic search traffic in the future as well. The business model is advertising-based, and we offer both pre-roll video ads and contextual text ads right now.
Will the video content be vetted before appearing on the site?
We do vet every piece of video to ensure that it meets basic standards (decency & non-obvious copyright violations).
Do you plan to introduce subscriptions for the site at some point or will it remain free to view?
We think there may be a subscription opportunity in the future, but we wouldn’t expect more than a fraction of a percent of users to opt for it.
Does Travelistic.com have any deals/affiliations with travel providers? Do you plan to do this in the future?
We don’t have any direct deals, although we have experimented with travel affiliate links in the past and undoubtedly will continue to do so.
This is a pilot project for Diversion Media; do you have any other niche sites planned for the future?
We’re planning to launch several more sites, in categories like food, fashion, and recreational sports — haven’t announced anything firm yet, though.