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riverbendnewbie

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I am working on my brochure and doing it simply ina rack style. What would be the most important info besides the obvious--location--should be included. I want it to be very casual and inviting. Any suggestions are helpful
 

IronGate

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Website!
Phone number.
Pictures of the place and/or general mood-setting pictures.
Map of the area.
 

gillumhouse

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Your inn name at the top so it will show up in a rack and your contact info and great (good is not good enough) photos. # of rooms, type of breakfast, map inset with directions. I do not put rates in printed materials because rates change and that makes printed rate rack cards obsolete.
 

IronGate

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Your inn name at the top so it will show up in a rack and your contact info and great (good is not good enough) photos. # of rooms, type of breakfast, map inset with directions. I do not put rates in printed materials because rates change and that makes printed rate rack cards obsolete..
gillumhouse said:
Your inn name at the top so it will show up in a rack and your contact info and great (good is not good enough) photos. # of rooms, type of breakfast, map inset with directions. I do not put rates in printed materials because rates change and that makes printed rate rack cards obsolete.
Very good point about placement of your name! Make a mockup of your brochure, and take it to the racks. How does it look amongst all the others?
 

Samster

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I finally got rack cards printed up after being open a few months :) All the contact info, your slogan (or logo or whatever is your "brand"), some great pics, what makes you special in your description, a small map to get to you, and how many rooms is essential. Don't put your rates on it as they can change and you can do a rate card if you like. We talked about Vistaprint in another thread about being a good resource for printing them up. Good luck!
 

Copperhead

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must.
 

swirt

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
WOW I can't believe a state tourism board would be so stupid as to require rates (I believe you, I am just appalled). In my opinion, very little good comes from listing rates on a rack card. If you absolutely must put rates on, then I would at least put an expiration date on the card. I'd try to get your B&B association's collective clout to try to get the state to change their rule.
There are three reasons I think it is a bad idea to put rates on a card. (I wrote this on another forum so some may have seen this before and the "you" in this represents innkeepers' in general, not Copperhead specifically)
1) Everything about your inn seen on the card/brochure may look great, but a price evokes either of two reactions. Either a potential guest is surprised by it in a good way (probably not) or turned off by it. The card evokes a decision before they have been enticed on to your website or called you on the phone. We have lots more helpful and valuable information on our website than we can ever fit on a rack card or a folded brochure. Let the unknown of your price draw them in a bit. Lets face it, most successful B&B's are not known for being attractively cheap. I don't know of any that are doing great because they are the best deal in town. That's what super-8's are for. So if your rates aren't super attractive, don't list them.
2) One thing that B&B's can do more readily than hotels is change their rates and offer specials that change from week to week, season to season etc. If you are actively changing your rates to attract more business, having a brochure or card out there that has some higher price listed on it does you no good. It actually works against you.
3) We used to have rack cards distributed to ~30 different locations and we are unable to always make sure the most current version is always on display everywhere [we actually stopped putting rack cards out, but that is a choice specific to our B&B and is not something that I would generally recommend]. So if we had a card with prices on it from last year still sitting out some place (with a date on it), potential guests who pick it up, may get turned off because it is out of date, or they get turned off when they call to book a room and we quote them a higher rate. Sure the date is on there and you can tell them to look for it, but that doesn't make them feel any better. If anything, it makes them feel stupid for not noticing the date. Either way they start off disappointed because you are charging more than they had anticipated. Its not the best way to start off.
In these times where the costs of doing business (milk, eggs, gas, heat...) are increasing rapidly it seems like the state tourism board is being silly and antiquated to force all participants to commit prices into print.
 

EmptyNest

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I have not seen it in person, but it is not a rack card but a brochure. To me it looks like too much is crammed onto it.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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,,,
What are you selling? Is is the location for the fishing? or the room AND the location? I would do both, I WOULD SELL THE LOCATION. Maybe I am not even looking at your place? YOU DO HAVE the giant Sturgeon on your website right?
 

gillumhouse

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
 

Copperhead

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
WOW I can't believe a state tourism board would be so stupid as to require rates (I believe you, I am just appalled). In my opinion, very little good comes from listing rates on a rack card. If you absolutely must put rates on, then I would at least put an expiration date on the card. I'd try to get your B&B association's collective clout to try to get the state to change their rule.
There are three reasons I think it is a bad idea to put rates on a card. (I wrote this on another forum so some may have seen this before and the "you" in this represents innkeepers' in general, not Copperhead specifically)
1) Everything about your inn seen on the card/brochure may look great, but a price evokes either of two reactions. Either a potential guest is surprised by it in a good way (probably not) or turned off by it. The card evokes a decision before they have been enticed on to your website or called you on the phone. We have lots more helpful and valuable information on our website than we can ever fit on a rack card or a folded brochure. Let the unknown of your price draw them in a bit. Lets face it, most successful B&B's are not known for being attractively cheap. I don't know of any that are doing great because they are the best deal in town. That's what super-8's are for. So if your rates aren't super attractive, don't list them.
2) One thing that B&B's can do more readily than hotels is change their rates and offer specials that change from week to week, season to season etc. If you are actively changing your rates to attract more business, having a brochure or card out there that has some higher price listed on it does you no good. It actually works against you.
3) We used to have rack cards distributed to ~30 different locations and we are unable to always make sure the most current version is always on display everywhere [we actually stopped putting rack cards out, but that is a choice specific to our B&B and is not something that I would generally recommend]. So if we had a card with prices on it from last year still sitting out some place (with a date on it), potential guests who pick it up, may get turned off because it is out of date, or they get turned off when they call to book a room and we quote them a higher rate. Sure the date is on there and you can tell them to look for it, but that doesn't make them feel any better. If anything, it makes them feel stupid for not noticing the date. Either way they start off disappointed because you are charging more than they had anticipated. Its not the best way to start off.
In these times where the costs of doing business (milk, eggs, gas, heat...) are increasing rapidly it seems like the state tourism board is being silly and antiquated to force all participants to commit prices into print.
.
I agree 100% with you Swirt, just wish the State Tourism site would! We do hope for possitive changes as there have been a big change in management in the last year. The associations around are hoping that the fresh ears may be also more open minded. We can all hope!
As far as paying to have our rack card in the centers, this state does not. At least they have that right! Our state has a tourism tax, that tax feeds the welcome centers - as well as other things. Who collects that tax ---the businesses that have rack cards in the centers.
 

Morticia

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
.
I'm still not 100% sure, but I think a 'mea culpa' is in order here from me. I'm the one who said I pay to be in the state welcome centers. However, what I thought were welcome centers operated by the state, apparently are not. This is one I doubt I will ever get straight as the state tourism group and this other group have names so similar I am always forgetting who I pay.
I tried to get it straightened out last year (in my head) and I'm still confused.
So, to sort of set the record straight- when I submit info directly the state (.gov) I don't pay. When I have my brochures in the apparenlty not-state run centers, I do pay.
 

gillumhouse

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
.
I'm still not 100% sure, but I think a 'mea culpa' is in order here from me. I'm the one who said I pay to be in the state welcome centers. However, what I thought were welcome centers operated by the state, apparently are not. This is one I doubt I will ever get straight as the state tourism group and this other group have names so similar I am always forgetting who I pay.
I tried to get it straightened out last year (in my head) and I'm still confused.
So, to sort of set the record straight- when I submit info directly the state (.gov) I don't pay. When I have my brochures in the apparenlty not-state run centers, I do pay.
.
Tweren't you. I do not want to name the State, but a regular here said it was $250 per Welcome Center to have her brochures there.
There are brochure rack filling companies here also that go to places and keep the racks filled with client materials for a fee. And if you put your stuff in a White Star rack (in an empty slot) your materials will quickly find the garbage can.
 

Morticia

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
.
I'm still not 100% sure, but I think a 'mea culpa' is in order here from me. I'm the one who said I pay to be in the state welcome centers. However, what I thought were welcome centers operated by the state, apparently are not. This is one I doubt I will ever get straight as the state tourism group and this other group have names so similar I am always forgetting who I pay.
I tried to get it straightened out last year (in my head) and I'm still confused.
So, to sort of set the record straight- when I submit info directly the state (.gov) I don't pay. When I have my brochures in the apparenlty not-state run centers, I do pay.
.
Tweren't you. I do not want to name the State, but a regular here said it was $250 per Welcome Center to have her brochures there.
There are brochure rack filling companies here also that go to places and keep the racks filled with client materials for a fee. And if you put your stuff in a White Star rack (in an empty slot) your materials will quickly find the garbage can.
.
gillumhouse said:
There are brochure rack filling companies here also that go to places and keep the racks filled with client materials for a fee. And if you put your stuff in a White Star rack (in an empty slot) your materials will quickly find the garbage can.
There is a rack like that in a restaurant near here that we eat at all the time. They had a lot of empty spaces so I used to bring my cards and put them in. They were always gone next time. Oh joy! Guests are taking them!
Go to restaurant with friends and I pull out my cards and stick them in an empty slot. Friends are aghast! What are you doing? You can't do that, you have to pay to be in there. Oops. Take cards back out, realize they were probably removed by owner of display. (Who, if a bright business person would have called me and asked me to sign up!)
 

EmptyNest

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
.
I'm still not 100% sure, but I think a 'mea culpa' is in order here from me. I'm the one who said I pay to be in the state welcome centers. However, what I thought were welcome centers operated by the state, apparently are not. This is one I doubt I will ever get straight as the state tourism group and this other group have names so similar I am always forgetting who I pay.
I tried to get it straightened out last year (in my head) and I'm still confused.
So, to sort of set the record straight- when I submit info directly the state (.gov) I don't pay. When I have my brochures in the apparenlty not-state run centers, I do pay.
.
Tweren't you. I do not want to name the State, but a regular here said it was $250 per Welcome Center to have her brochures there.
There are brochure rack filling companies here also that go to places and keep the racks filled with client materials for a fee. And if you put your stuff in a White Star rack (in an empty slot) your materials will quickly find the garbage can.
.
It VA, it costs $750 to put your brochures in all the Welcome Centers. And they are very strict as to what you can display. They have more than they can put out..so obviously people pay it.
 

egoodell

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
.
I'm still not 100% sure, but I think a 'mea culpa' is in order here from me. I'm the one who said I pay to be in the state welcome centers. However, what I thought were welcome centers operated by the state, apparently are not. This is one I doubt I will ever get straight as the state tourism group and this other group have names so similar I am always forgetting who I pay.
I tried to get it straightened out last year (in my head) and I'm still confused.
So, to sort of set the record straight- when I submit info directly the state (.gov) I don't pay. When I have my brochures in the apparenlty not-state run centers, I do pay.
.
Tweren't you. I do not want to name the State, but a regular here said it was $250 per Welcome Center to have her brochures there.
There are brochure rack filling companies here also that go to places and keep the racks filled with client materials for a fee. And if you put your stuff in a White Star rack (in an empty slot) your materials will quickly find the garbage can.
.
It VA, it costs $750 to put your brochures in all the Welcome Centers. And they are very strict as to what you can display. They have more than they can put out..so obviously people pay it.
.
That's why we don't have ours in the Welcome Centers. BUT....the VA Conference and Visitor Centers let us put them in for free. They are the same folks who have the great website that promotes travel in VA and gives us free space on their website.
Riki
 

EmptyNest

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
.
I'm still not 100% sure, but I think a 'mea culpa' is in order here from me. I'm the one who said I pay to be in the state welcome centers. However, what I thought were welcome centers operated by the state, apparently are not. This is one I doubt I will ever get straight as the state tourism group and this other group have names so similar I am always forgetting who I pay.
I tried to get it straightened out last year (in my head) and I'm still confused.
So, to sort of set the record straight- when I submit info directly the state (.gov) I don't pay. When I have my brochures in the apparenlty not-state run centers, I do pay.
.
Tweren't you. I do not want to name the State, but a regular here said it was $250 per Welcome Center to have her brochures there.
There are brochure rack filling companies here also that go to places and keep the racks filled with client materials for a fee. And if you put your stuff in a White Star rack (in an empty slot) your materials will quickly find the garbage can.
.
It VA, it costs $750 to put your brochures in all the Welcome Centers. And they are very strict as to what you can display. They have more than they can put out..so obviously people pay it.
.
That's why we don't have ours in the Welcome Centers. BUT....the VA Conference and Visitor Centers let us put them in for free. They are the same folks who have the great website that promotes travel in VA and gives us free space on their website.
Riki
.
Do you mean Virginia.org??? They are the same who run the Welcome Centers...well sort of...a branch of it anyway.
What is the website of the VAConference and Visitors Center??? I am not sure I know them.
 

egoodell

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Your State office of tourism may have certain regulations in order to be placed in your state Welcome centers. If you plan to provide them to the centers (IMVHO is a must do) then you should check with them 1st.
Our state requires rates to be listed. As Gillumhouse pointed out this could cause brochures to become outdated so what we did was place 'starting at $X." Some of the others placed a price range.
Other than Pictures which is what catches the eye, we also found that the quality of the paper is very important. You do not want to spend good money on a brochure that bends over or goes limp in the stand. Good quality card stock - a must..
I was surprised to dscover on the previous forum that State Tourism Welcome Center rules differ. It was pointed out there that at least one State requires a payment to display brochures at EACH Welcome Center - in MY State they do it for free (at all Centers) and the Welcome Centers are begging for brochures and rack cards from B & Bs.
Suggestion for States that require payment - ask them what they are going to display if no one can afford to pay. I know that will never happen but it is a thought...
.
I'm still not 100% sure, but I think a 'mea culpa' is in order here from me. I'm the one who said I pay to be in the state welcome centers. However, what I thought were welcome centers operated by the state, apparently are not. This is one I doubt I will ever get straight as the state tourism group and this other group have names so similar I am always forgetting who I pay.
I tried to get it straightened out last year (in my head) and I'm still confused.
So, to sort of set the record straight- when I submit info directly the state (.gov) I don't pay. When I have my brochures in the apparenlty not-state run centers, I do pay.
.
Tweren't you. I do not want to name the State, but a regular here said it was $250 per Welcome Center to have her brochures there.
There are brochure rack filling companies here also that go to places and keep the racks filled with client materials for a fee. And if you put your stuff in a White Star rack (in an empty slot) your materials will quickly find the garbage can.
.
It VA, it costs $750 to put your brochures in all the Welcome Centers. And they are very strict as to what you can display. They have more than they can put out..so obviously people pay it.
.
That's why we don't have ours in the Welcome Centers. BUT....the VA Conference and Visitor Centers let us put them in for free. They are the same folks who have the great website that promotes travel in VA and gives us free space on their website.
Riki
.
Do you mean Virginia.org??? They are the same who run the Welcome Centers...well sort of...a branch of it anyway.
What is the website of the VAConference and Visitors Center??? I am not sure I know them.
.
Yes, the Virginia.org people. They just sent me an email that they want me to go to Fredericksburg to do a blitz at the welcome center for the tour business. They are letting us put our rack cards in the center near Monticello and not charging us. I first contacted them when we opened to try and see about getting them in there and they told me I had to pay but not any more. They asked me at one of the monthly meetings we try to go to if I would drop some off and we've been doing so ever since.
They are very helpful but don't understand how small I am. I work at uva, and Chris and I do the B&B and wine tours by ourselves and we just don't have the time for even one of us to go up there and promote. Right now is the busy season. We could do it in the winter time.
They just came here and did a day long thing where I was able to go and talk with all of the departments. They told me one important thing - that all of us should check the leads for the group/convention sales.
They told me to "stay alive" the big boys that used to just handle the big groups are now even handling bookings for two to keep in business so they are all looking for services and accommodations that are small as well as large.
Riki
 
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