It is time to introduce another jury member of our Travel Tech Tournament. We have talked to Shane Mayer from GetYourGuide. Just in case you have not heard of our event, yet ... we are hosting the TOA.berlin satellite event on the 20th of June in Berlin, and we are inviting traveltech start-ups to pitch to a jury of travel start-up veterans. The winner receives a media, mentoring & PR - package from the jury.
Shane, tell us a little bit about you? What's your background?
I was born and raised in the USA, living in New Mexico, DC and California, before moving to Berlin. I studied political science, but my career moved into technology, working with a number of successful start-ups in San Francisco. I moved to Berlin with my husband and son, where I joined GetYourGuide as the Director of Business Development. I love exploring Europe with my family!
How did you land in the travel industry?
Previous to GetYourGuide, I worked for a start-up called Sosh (like "social"), which was a marketplace for local experiences, much like GetYourGuide is for travel activities. Combined with my love of travel, GetYourGuide was a great fit.
Why have you decided to join the jury of the Travel Tech Tournament?
In my position leading GetYourGuide’s business development team, I take a view of our industry as an ecosystem of ideas that share a common goal: making travel more frictionless, more accessible and more incredible. If those ideas lack soundness or diversity, our ecosystem won’t move forward. So I’m here to listen, learn, challenge, and give back what I can.
What do you expect from the event?
I’m looking forward to hearing bold new thinking from the brightest young minds in the industry. And I expect my fellow judges not to go easy! Tourism is a crowded industry, and not every start-up is guaranteed a spot. You have to earn it.
What is the most inspiring travel start-up story you know?
I think some of the most incredible innovation in our industry is taking place in an area you might not expect: the world of travel blogs. I’m always particularly inspired by the entrepreneurial mentality and determination bloggers bring to their craft, and DucsAmsterdam, a blog we work closely with, is a prime example: Daniel, the founder, started it as a way to keep in touch with family and friends back home in Brazil when he started a new life as an expat in Amsterdam. His first real paycheck only arrived after 1.5 years of content creation and SEO study, but thanks to his focus on providing the best advice & recommendations on travel activities to his audience, DucAmsterdam turned into a full-fledged profitable business.
What tips can give to the start-ups entering the tournament?
Don’t play it safe with your presentations! I’ll be attuned to the delivery as much as the substance of your ideas — so it doesn’t matter if yours is the best in the room if I’m bored. Those who take risks to make their pitches stand out will reap the rewards.
What is the worst thing to start the pitch with?
“Imagine a world…” That’s your job, not mine. Then, don’t tell me about it — show it to me.
What is your favorite travel destination?
Amsterdam, Barcelona and Hawaii.
What is your travel tip / #travelhack?
When visiting a popular attraction or landmark, always check beforehand if there’s a way to skip the lines. You’ll be surprised at what you’ll find ;-)
Thank you very much. We are looking forward to seeing you at the event.
If you are a team of movers and shakers and have a great idea and the pitch deck to match? Do you have what it takes to stir up the travel market? Have you created an app and want to show it to millions of travelers? Let us know and hand in your pitch deck before the 14th of June.
Or do you just want to network with the international travel tech community during TOA? Then sign up here!