Today, I am proud to announce The Travel Word’s part in the launch of EcoAdventure Media, a group of seasoned media and travel industry professionals – writers, reporters, editors, bloggers, photographers, videographers, podcasters, marketing/PR virtuosos, social media experts and more – united behind a powerful platform for promoting eco-conscious brands.
Of course, it’s a behind-the-scenes exercise that most travellers will never get wind of, but this is our early and hopeful boast that perhaps the responsible, sustainable and local causes The Travel Word champions, not to mention the results of our lobbying, will be amplified by EcoAdventures Media and add momentum to the process of inspiring more people to think more mindfully about how who operate in or benefit from the travel industry.
EcoAdventure Media aims to connect sustainable travellers with trustworthy travel industry operators who emphasise travelling responsibly. We want to encourage the growth of the ecotourism industry by inspiring more travellers to make conscious choices that benefit conservation efforts and local cultures. Basically, we want to help propel responsible ecotourism into the mainstream.
That is what has motivated The Travel Word’s participation in this undertaking, our enthusiasm for which can be summarised in two words: turf and collaboration.
Protecting Our Turf
‘Turf’ here has two meanings, one more commercial and the other more ecological. On the commercial front, the travel industry is a very big and very busy place, constantly shifting and evolving. These days, for small businesses to stake ground and hold it – provide a relevant service and live by it – takes a lot of time and resources. What EcoAdventure Media represents for us is a bigger footprint, a bigger piece of turf that, with a bigger team looking after its interests, commands more attention and will help us continue doing what we are passionate about.
On the ecological front, we remain convinced that the travel industry could be a – or even the – leading global player in fostering the kind of change that rectifies some of the world’s more intractable problems, including poverty, inequality and environmental damage. By stepping up as a force for earth-consciousness, responsibility and sustainability in travel, EcoAdventure Media is walking the talk already spoken loudly by its eco-minded members.
A Mighty Whole
From culinary, cultural and family travel to nature travel and outdoor recreation, EcoAdventure Media collectively covers every major aspect of ecotourism and outdoor adventure. But it is a mighty whole far greater than the sum of these parts.
“We’ve got two worlds existing in tourism,” writes Anna Pollock of Conscious Travel: “the traditional mainstream that is preoccupied with business as usual (i.e., more of everything so long as that delivers more profit even if it delivers less value to the places it exploits)… [and] a huge but fractured, sometimes fractious fringe that is growing and spreading like multiple infections that haven’t yet coalesced.”
I believe EcoAdventure Media is one of several early moves toward coalescence. In the face of “plenty of agencies and consultants all too willing to provide the platitudes and spin to make the status quo feel comfortable and… even glittering and chic,” continues Pollock, EcoAdventure Media is an example of something actively “building a better tourism never to be underestimated or under valued.” Just as importantly, we hope not to be “too inward looking – applying labels, arguing over definitions and decrying the expression of a problem.” We believe that EcoAdventure Media will prove an early exception to the weaknesses Pollock describes of disparate actors “not joining up with their counterparts in society who are addressing deeper causes and systemic disfunctionality.”
As award-winning veterans in the travel industry, the 16 individuals behind EcoAdventure Media have spent years building loyal followings and extensive influence in their respective fields. In the aggregate, the 13 websites associated with EcoAdventure Media average over 500,000 page views every month, with a collective reach of millions of social media followers across the most pivotal networks and platforms. EcoAdventure Media allows us to put that influence to work through a range of content and marketing services, from press trips and sponsorships to content generation, and social media marketing and training, not to mention traditional media services like writing press releases and managing marketing and PR.