Blogger Spotlight: Karen Schaler From TravelTherapyTrips.com
Behind every great luxury blog, you will find a great story. Luxury bloggers are real people, not machines, and to successfully work with them, we recommend you get to know them a little better. Through our years at LuxeInACity, we have talked, collaborated and exchanged ideas with dozens of great bloggers from around the world.
Since bloggers rarely talk about themselves – they tend to talk about everyone else instead – we hope to showcase their skills, expertises and opinions in this blog series.
Get to know them, learn from them and hopefully you will find an innovative way to collaborate with them.
Today’s blogger is Karen Schaler from TravelTherapyTrips.com. You might have seen Karen on the Travel Therapy TV show traveling the world and making us dream of the ultimate escape. This three time Emmy award-winner and lifestyle and travel expert hopes to inspire even the most discerning traveler to take empowering trips based on what they are going through in life. Whether you are stressed out or looking for romance, check out her online series for tips on where to go next.
You can also follow Karen on her adventures through her articles on such prominent publications such as The New Yorker, The Boston Globe, New York Daily News, Travel+Leisure, Town & Country Travel, Elite Traveler, Islands, abcnews.com, Delta Sky, Hemispheres, US Airways Magazine, SilverKris-Singapore Airlines Magazine.
Read on to learn more about Karen Schaler, a woman with a passion for sharing her tips with her fans.
Every blogger has a different story on how they got started blogging. What is yours?
“I got started blogging to launch my new website, www.traveltherapytrips.com, as I was getting ready for my book Travel Therapy: Where Do You Need to Go?, to come out because I wanted people looking for the right trips to take to have a place to go where they could continue the journey, after the book, and get updated information on the best destinations, resorts, spas, culinary trips and travel adventures from around the world.”
:Because I’m the creator and host of Travel Therapy TV, airing in New York City and nationally, my blog is focused on a lot of videos highlighting the different Travel Therapy trips I’ve taken for my TV segments and ongoing online video syndication. Since all of my reporting is ”first person” meaning I have to actually travel to a place and experience it before I will write about it, I work with people who are able to help me get the editorial I need and understand what it takes to shoot and produce a television segment. I tend to work with the same publicists over and over again that ”get it” because I know when they pitch me a story they know my Travel Therapy brand and what I do and they don’t waste my time and we know how to work together quickly and efficiently.
That said I always love meeting new publicists who have taken the time to know the kind of editorial I’m doing and ask smart questions about what I’m looking for. For those publicist who blindly email me how their story is perfect for my ”readers” when I work in TV and have viewers, their pitches go into the trash. If they don’t take the time to know the medium I’m working in I don’t take the time to read any further.”
What is your take on press releases? Do you like receiving them or do you simply discard them?
“I rarely read a press release beyond the title and will only read on if the title is fantastic and makes me curious to read more. I prefer targeted pitches to what I do with my editorial, ideally one or two lines to ”hook” me into wanting more. I work in TV, we’re very fast paced. I decide in the first line if I’m interested so they have to make it good.”
What would make you choose to work with a brand on a giveaway campaign on your site?
“The only time I’ll work with a give-a-way campaign is if I’ve covered the place doing the give-a-way and can recommend that place personally and it makes good editorial sense to offer the give-a-way.”
If a brand wants to reach you, what channel should they use? Do you prefer email, social media or another means of communication?
“Always email, please. I don’t take calls. You can also send me a tweet @traveltherapy but I get so many it might get lost so email is still always the safest and again a catchy personalized subject line will get it read faster.”
Of all the social media channels you engage on, which one do you prefer and why?
“I like Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter as my top choices. They each offer a unique way to help me share my editorial content and stay connected and researched on potential stories I’m interested in covering in the future.”
In your opinion, what does it take to become successful on social media?
“To be successful in social media you have to check in daily, be engaged, share information, be authentic and honest and respond to those who are interacting with you as much as you possibly can. You also can’t just shamelessly self-promote your own project you have to give back and share unique ideas, tips, things that will help another person, that’s how you build a loyal following.”
Do you monitor your Klout score on a daily/weekly basis? Do you think this social ranking is of any real value to luxury brands?
“Right now I’m not monitoring my Klout score as I haven’t seen it have much impact or be relevant to what I do at this point.”
If you had to mentor a new blogger, what is your go-to advice to become successful?
“Pay it forward! Find something to say that is unique, inspiring and empowering and help people live their best lives. That’s how you can build a loyal following and do your small part to help make someone else’s life a little better. Whether that be through travel, fashion, health and wellness, sports, you name it, the key is just to be genuine and to give something back not just take, take, take. Everyone has something to say so just choose your words wisely so people will want to listen.”
Get inspired by Karen Schaler on TravelTherapyTrips.com, on Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, YouTube, Delicious and StumbleUpon. If you are to shy to connect with her directly and want an introduction, reach out to us.
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