What’s your story? Willie Cameron of Loch Ness Marketing explains how you can make your business the hero of your tale.
Today is World Storytelling Day and I am writing a short blog for HITA to encourage anyone working in hospitality, at visitor attractions, organising events or working in the food and drink sector in the Highlands and Islands to have a really good think about the great story you have to tell.
A few years ago I had the privilege to address the Welsh Cultural Conference in Carnaeveron Castle. One of the guest speakers was Professor Hans Schouten from Holland.
He listed the points the modern tourist was looking for at a destination:
– something that was interesting, unique and meaningful,
- good interpretation,
- and finally a bloody good story.
You no doubt will have heard over the last few years that it is all about the narrative. Within that narrative you will have that bloody good story.
It is that story that will give your business that unique selling point which will separate you from the rest of your fellows. So when it comes to framing your entry for this year’s up-and-coming prestigious awards, you will have the edge.
It might be your location. It might be what you offer. It might be your exceptional service. It might be your staff going that extra mile with your customers. It might be giving all celebrity-standard service. It might be your fresh local produce. In the end it might be just yourself and your amazing stories that you tell, which keep your customers hanging on to your every word.
My story began with my location – Loch Ness – and its mystery. What we developed around that location, all added to the story we told.
A hotel is a hotel, but what we did back in 1994 was to identify a niche market that we could provide for. That was catering for film and TV crews and specialising in their high demands and needs.
Meals at crazy times of day and night; 24-hour service for some crews; sourcing props, vehicles, boats, extras and much more…
We were involved in pop videos, documentaries, adverts and feature films so there was never a dull moment and we became good at it.
So much so that in 1996 we entered our very first award, the Tourism Initiative Award in the Scottish Licensed Trade Awards, basing it around our service to film TV and media – and we won the gong.
This accolade gave us PR at no cost to ourselves, gave us brand projection, created business and gave us encouragement to both carry on and develop.
The rest they say is history.
So have a think, look for the angle and create your own bloody good story.