HRTurizam interviews Paul Bradbury ahead of the launch of the Total Croatia tourism portal
April 27, 2021. Very grateful to Goran Rihelj from Croatia’s leading B2B portal HRTurizam, for this opportunity to talk about the new Total Croatia tourist portal, which is being finalized and will be presented at a press conference in Dubrovnik on May 3.
1. Did the trial of the Croatian Tourist Board prompt you to launch a new parallel portal to the National Tourist Board?
Haha, yes, the kings of accidental tourism strike again. I don’t really want to talk about prosecutions anymore, because tourism is much more interesting, but here are the links to both prosecutions, with answers from my excellent lawyer, Vanja Juric, for anyone interested.
/ / / Croatian National Tourist Board sues TCN: Trial 1 (50,000 Kuna)
/ / / Croatian National Tourist Board sues TCN: Trial 2 (50,000 Kuna)
The lawsuits have made me realize that there is no point in trying to work with the currently broken system. Rather than trying to work with CNTB, it would be faster and a lot more fun to produce a better product myself. Completely independent and working with the people I choose, while making money.
2. What will the page consist of? How is the whole project designed?
I actually started it at the end of 2018, but put it on hold until about two months ago. The lawsuits came in October, but it wasn’t until February that I switched the Google Adsense providers to a new California AI system that my life changed. My income tripled, but it was the data from the new system that blew me away. Of the many things the system has given me, it made me realize that running TCN was a labor of love and would never make me any money, but this new TC site would.
Basically for 1000 visits to Croatia I would earn $ 1.20. If these visits were from the United States, the amount was $ 9.50. So how do I get people in America to read my articles?
“Why not just finish the Total Croatia website? It’s a great project, which will require less work in the long run, and it looks like it will bring in a lot of money,” my wife Miranda suggested over lunch.
Why not, indeed?
I diverted resources from TCN to refresh the 86 pages we made in 2018. The results were amazing. Within days we were in the top 3 places on Google search for target keywords such as Bosnia to Croatia, Montenegro to Croatia, Zagreb airport, health tourism in Croatia, currency in Croatia. Even more interesting, there was an article from 2018 in French – How to get from Split to Dubrovnik, which was still number 7 in Google search in France. We refreshed it and it’s now number 2. Unbelievable.
I realized that I now have the tool not only to make the CNTB totally irrelevant, but also to take control of quality tourist information for Croatia and do it right. I also understood that I could copy all the articles to a French directory and translate them. We currently have translators working in 14 languages. The English site will have 170 high quality articles and we will be ready to launch on Monday. And we already rank superbly in so many languages, including Croatian! Od Splita do Dubrovniknika took us to number 4.
We will not translate everything into all languages, but translate gradually to meet specific needs. Dubrovnik will be in Ukrainian, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean and about fifteen other languages, for example, but Karlovac won’t need much. We aim to make every landing page the best and most comprehensive for accessing the internet. And we have some great writers working on the project, including Marc Rowlands (ex Guardian and Time Out Croatia), Morana Zibar and Nikola Pezic.
3. How can the private sector be involved through promotion or collaboration?
This is the fun part of the project. As the project is 100% mine and I am totally independent, I can work with whoever I want. And I love to celebrate the little guy. If you are an uhljeb you are not welcome. But if you are a local high quality supplier, we can discuss partnership. Basically, I’m looking for a main sponsor for each destination, who will benefit from an excellent promotion, as well as editorial input and the possibility of publishing their offers on a daily basis in all languages ââif they wish. We have already concluded partnership agreements with Suncani Hvar in Hvar Town, Hilton Hotels in Zagreb, Savills property in Dubrovnik and the fabulous Adriatic Weddings Croatia on Murter, for example. And there is so much more we can do with these partners, including coworking projects with Tanja de Saltwater nomads.
For small private businesses there will be plenty of opportunities. It is time to resume tourism and put it back in the hands of genuine, quality service providers. Let me tell you how I signed the first TC partner 10 days ago.
I was in Hvar and got a call asking me to be in Zagreb the next day at 1:00 p.m. to interview Mark Viduka. The catamaran and the 6:35 am bus dragged me to the office at 2:30 pm, so too late.
I posted on Facebook to see if anyone was driving and could take me. Within 2 minutes, a message! I am not going to Zagreb, but I will drive you there, because it means that I will have 4 hours of your time. I have been in tourism in Split and Stari Grad for 10 years, and have followed Total Hvar from the start.
And what a trip it was. I fell in love with Nikola from Nostress Boats. I was impressed by his passion, his local knowledge and his approach to customer service. He was a skipper with his own boat and mooring in Stari Grad, and had started on his own after working with a 5 star boutique hotel in Hvar. He was looking to promote his business and thought TCN / TC would be a good place. By the team that we reached Zagreb, we had agreed to an agreement where it will be the only boat transfer option for Stari Grad in one page. In 10 languages.
4. When does the project officially start? Although the whole project is not yet released, but the site ranks perfectly on Google, the goal is to be the first choice on Google and a source of information on Croatian tourism for tourists?
We will kick off with a press conference in Lazareti at 10:30 am on May 3 in Dubrovnik. I am delighted that Kresimir Macan, the brain and dynamo of the Total Croatia Travel INFO Viber community (which last week won the 2021 Grand International PRix for Crisis Communication) will also speak at the press conference.
Yes that is correct. We want to be the first (and the best) source of information for tourists not only in English but also in their language – #CroatiaInYourLanguage. Everything I do is 100% organic. I read that the Croatian National Tourist Board has launched a tender for a new website for 9 million kuna. My total investment in this project will be less than 5,000 euros – the project will generate the rest of the money needed. And I already got that money back from early advertisers. Thanks to the Kings’ excellent public relations with their pursuits, we’ve already generated more sales than the pursuit value. So big thank you!
Although the site is not yet complete, the site is for research, and we have shared various articles over the past two months. The greatest early interest has come from Poland, with over 15,000 unique visits to the 6 articles the fabulous Sabina has translated so far. The Polish version of my expat overview of living in Croatia has already had more than 8,000 visits. The English version of this article was also very popular..
We plan to be on the first page of Google for every English page by the summer, as well as many foreign language pages. This is what I mean by taking control of quality tourist information for Croatia. And thus we will show how irrelevant the Croatian National Tourist Office is. And if you’re not an uhljeb, don’t hesitate to join us.
The site is still being finalized, but you can check the progress here.