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Inside Story Newsletter - Spring 2018
CoolStays
I first discovered CoolStays some years ago when I was looking for somewhere a bit special where I could advertise my own holiday cottage which is quite an unusual and unique place. I’ve had great success with CoolsStays ever since and of course I applaud the fact that they insist on professional photography in order to promote their holiday cottages properly. I asked Claire Wills from CoolStays to tell us a little more about the company.
CoolStays.com is an online travel brand that showcases unique and unusual places to stay across the UK, Europe and worldwide. We have made it our mission to find you that special place with a difference. We now have a growing portfolio of over 1000 hand-picked, extraordinary places to stay. Each offering something truly quirky, noteworthy or stylish.

Accommodation includes glamping options such as gypsy caravans, shepherds huts, tipis, yurts, tents and cabins; luxury tree houses and cave houses; cool conversions such as planes, trains, boats, buses, churches, windmills, lighthouses and deluxe beach huts; as well as the coolest quintessential cottages, villas, B&Bs and boutique hotels.
We have grown significantly in the past 18 months, and are often featured in the press; take a look here for recent press coverage.
coolstays.com/in-the-press

So, if you are looking for a marketing channel that will showcase your property beautifully, as well as generating you enquiries and bookings then look no further.
How we work:
- we charge annual subscription, starting at £99 + VAT per listing, with 4 different packages available, depending on what marketing you are looking for. Find details here
coolstays.com/owners
- we have an owners area where you can upload information and images, and add offers and late deals
- we can integrate with some booking platforms, Supercontrol and Anytime booking to show availability and link to booking pages.
What kind of properties do we list?
- each property must have an obvious wow factor, whether it is the view, a wood fired hot tub, the design, or the decor, it must offer something unique.
- each property must have excellent hi res professional photos
- we list properties from all around the world
If you want to find out more about marketing your property on CoolStays, please contact owners@coolstays.com
Good BBQ location
Sunny afternoon
Lodge Interior
Breakfast Time


Houzz Website and Awards
I have mentioned the Houzz website in previous newsletters but its such a good resource for anyone with an interest in property and interior design and renovation that its well worth mentioning again.
Houzz is the leading website for home renovation and design with over 40 million monthly users so I'm delighted to have won one of their coveted ' Best of Houzz' awards for the third year in succession , with the Houzz viewers voting me the 2018 winner for Best Customer Service. Only 3% of Houzz professionals ever win so this is a great addition to the Houzz 'Best Photographer' award I won in 2016 along with Best Customer Service in 2017.
“We’re so pleased to award Best of Houzz 2018 to Tracey at Inside Story Photography,” said Marcus Hartwall, Managing Director of Houzz UK and Ireland. “Each business was singled out for recognition by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts. It is more important than ever for home design and construction professionals to hire professional photographers to make their work stand out”.

The #2minutebeachclean
I know so many of my clients spend a huge amount of time and money ensuring their holiday property looks just right. No doubt your guests appreciate this but imagine how they would feel if they took a walk along the local beach and discovered rubbish everywhere? A dirty beach is a huge turn off and gives your guests a good reason not to return.
We are all involved in the tourism business and our holiday homes are often located in some of the most outstanding and naturally beautiful places in the country. Therefore it makes sense that we should all take an interest in the environment around us.
Well here’s a really simple way we can all help: its called the #2minutebeachclean initiative and it was created by the not- for-profit organisation The Beach Clean Network. #2minutebeachclean encourages people to take two minutes out of their day and pick up some rubbish that is on the beach.
History of #2minutebeachclean
The initiative was started on social media back in 2013/14 as we became aware that our beaches were becoming covered in litter. The recent Blue Planet TV documentary series has really given the #2minutebeachclean new momentum and hammered home the impact of rubbish - and plastic in particular - on our environment and the local wildlife. This is the same environment and wildlife that our guests want to enjoy so its easy to see how this can do real harm to our local tourism economy.
Please think about getting involved with this. Make sure that you get involved on social media too and let everyone know that you’re doing your bit by using the hashtag #2minutebeachclean. I have added a link to the campaign website on my own holiday cottage website so all of my guests can see this and take part. This short video by Beach Clean Network founder Martin Dorey is a good introduction: https://www.youtube.com 2 minute beach clean
Bamburgh Castle
Low Tide
Newton by the Sea, Northumberland
Tynemouth
Low Newton Beach


My Simple Pricing Policy for Photography
Early in 2017, I introduced a much simpler and more open ended pricing policy and its proved to be very popular indeed. Very simply, I have an initial attendance charge of £100.00 (this covers my time and travel) and then any photographs you choose after that are priced on a sliding scale depending on how many you require. This is as follows:

1-3 photographs £26.00 each
4-9 photographs £20.00 each
10-29 photographs £18.00 each
30+ photographs £15.00 each

For example, photography to include your choice of three photographs would be:
Attendance fee of £100
3 photos @ £26 each
Total £178.00

A slightly bigger package is a touch more cost effective; for example photography to include your choice of five photographs would be:
Attendance fee of £100
10 photos @ £18 each
Total £280.00

It means that you will be able to quickly and easily work out the likely costs for your photography. I will always take a large selection of photographs to ensure you have a good choice and extra photographs can be purchased at an additional cost. I am happy to be as flexible as required in order to produce the images that you require. Whether you are new to digital photography or are an experienced web designer, my dedicated download site allows you to access your photographs quickly and easily. There’s much more on this on my website: www.insidestoryphotography.co.uk






OLDER NEWS LETTERS
February 2018 - Dog Friendly

Autumn 2017 - Out of Season pricing


Summer 2017 - Free Landscapes

Spring 2017-Tourism Fair Dates

Winter 2016-The Importance of Good Bedding

March 2016-Holiday Cottage Videos

November 2015-Twilight Images

August 2015-Property Ideas

April 2015-Not all professional photographers are equal.

March 2015 Checking out the Competition

Winter 2014-Food Photography

May 2014-Free Publicity

January 2014-Keeping Up Appearances

Autumn 2013-Cleaning Complaints

May 2013-Breakfast in Bed-

February 2013-Funny reviews, complaints & comments

Autumn 2012-Property Boards

Summer 2012-See the Difference

Spring 2012- Forthcoming tourism fairs

Winter 2011-Plan ahead for next year’s enquiries.