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Ethik’Hotels: the platform for eco-responsible tourism [Podcast]

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Ethik’Hotels is a start-up that allows travelers to find eco-responsible accommodations worldwide. Passionate about eco-responsible tourism, its founder, Anne Chéné, has taken advantage of the Covid crisis to turn her passion into a business.

In this podcast, she talks about her entrepreneurial adventure and her ambitions. The project she is carrying is also a transformative experience for her. With expertise in the construction world, she had to reinvent herself and learn new skills. Therefore, her entrepreneurial project is also an exciting life experience she shares with us.

Summary


2 marketing ideas to remember

The first marketing idea is to propose a solution to a niche need. Anne Chéné quickly brought hotels to her platform that would otherwise have had trouble finding their targets.

A second idea is the creation of a collaborative platform. Indeed, sharing information allows travelers to continuously enrich the website, contributing to its reputation and references. Think about making your customers contributors.


icône expérience entrepreneuriale et chiffres-clés

Chapter 1: Ethik’Hotels in 1 key figure

Ethik’Hotels already has 367 establishments listed on the website.

These Ethik’Hotels cover a large geographical area as they are present in 60 countries:

  • 1/3 are in France
  • 1/4 in the rest of Europe

The particularity of the platform is that it proposes addresses of all types, for all budgets and all desires. It is a pragmatic way to cover all the declinations of eco-responsible travel.


genèse de l'idée entrepreneuriale

Chapter 2: the genesis of the business idea

As is often the case with entrepreneurship, the idea for the business was born out of a personal problem. After a vacation in Cambodia in January 2020, the idea was born. After returning to France, Anne and her partner realized how memorable these eco-responsible vacations were. However, organizing them was a challenge, and from this difficulty, the idea of the Ethik’Hotels platform was born.

Anne Chéné also explains that she felt a latent need, especially after the Paris COP:

I was sure that there was an ecological awareness since the Paris COP

Some striking figures about this growing market

  • 580 million euros: spent by the French on responsible tourism in 2018.
  • 58 billion euros: overall spending in tourism in France in 2018.
  • 1 billion euros: estimated market spending in responsible tourism in 2027.
  • 7 billion euros: estimated spending generated by responsible tourism if the 47% of French people who want to travel better-lived tourism this way.

validation de l'idée entrepreneuriale

Chapter 3: confirmation of the business idea

The confirmation of the business idea was done thanks to creating an Instagram community in parallel to the website. This community allowed us to benefit from the feedback of Ethik’Hotels and travelers, favorable to the business idea.

HEC then selected Anne Chéné to join the Challenge Plus class. This selection was an additional positive sign of the interest in the idea.

Finally, market research was realized and confirmed the interest in traveling in an eco-responsible way.


démarrage de la startup

Chapter 4: getting started

A considerable amount of time has been devoted to the website, the cornerstone of Ethik’Hotels. Indeed, sales are based on an inbound marketing strategy.

As part of her SEO strategy, Anne Chéné enriches her blogs with articles through which she gives precious advice and shares her values. No less than 70 articles are currently listed. She wrote a large part of them and got help for the others. This intensive writing strategy has allowed her to position herself well on specific niche keywords that correspond to the interests of her target audience.

We can’t stress enough how important a content strategy is. Good content is the basis for the development of any start-up. Thanks to SEO, you can develop awareness and a clientele at a low cost.


phase de décollage de l'entreprise

Chapter 5: take off

Today in a growth phase, Ethik’Hotels is nevertheless facing a challenge. Funds are needed to move up a gear and expand the platform’s offer.

A business model based on affiliation, a solid online awareness, and a complete offer are Anne’s objectives to attract investors. The offers should not be reserved for an elite. In this quest, it is essential to meet the needs of all eco-responsible travelers.


le futur de la startup

Chapter 6: the future

After a successful start, Ethik’Hotels has set several objectives to be reached within 3 years.

The first objective is to recruit a team to:

  • Animate its growing community;
  • Make consumers aware of the possibility of responsible travel without sacrificing everything;
  • Canvass and recruit hotels and agencies.

The second objective is to expand the offer in Europe geographically.

Finally, it is also planned to expand the offer to not only target couples without children.


A podcast to help you develop your start-up

The “Entrepreneurship and Marketing” podcast traces the different stages in the life of a promising start-up. By identifying the critical elements of success at each phase of the start-up’s development, we help you find solutions for your company.

The Podcast is divided into 4 to 6-minute chapters. Each chapter is dedicated to a specific theme or development phase. You can listen to the entire Podcast or choose to listen to only a part of it by directly selecting the one that interests you the most. You can also find the video version of the interview on our YouTube channel.

Illustration images: shutterstock

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Author: Pierre-Nicolas Schwab

Dr. Pierre-Nicolas Schwab is the founder of IntoTheMinds. He specializes in e-commerce, retail and logistics. He is also a research fellow in the marketing department of the Free University of Brussels and acts as a coach for several startups and public organizations. He holds a PhD in Marketing, a MBA in Finance, and a MSc in Chemistry. He can be contacted by email, Linkedin or by phone (+32 486 42 79 42)

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