“Tips for Successful Blogging”

by Robert W. Bone

“The secret to a successful travel blog is to always use it to help people in some way.”

Thus spoke Christopher McGinnis to an audience of around 30 members of BATW at their April meeting at the Presidio National Park on the edge of San Francisco.

A travel consultant and San Francisco resident, Chris McGinnis is often away in the world’s airplanes and airports. He is a vocal and reliable source of up-to-date airline information, much of which is covered by “trip reports” in his popular blog, travelskills.com.

McGinnis’ reports are also often seen on CNN, where he specializes in business travel subjects. He spoke to the BATW group in the Presidio Officers’ Club, a recently renovated public facility on the grounds of the park. Now a national park, the Presidio is a former military post that was often described as the most beautiful facility of its kind in the U.S.

McGinnis’ Travelskills blog was created three years ago as an outgrowth of two books he originally wrote in the 1990s.

“I don’t think business travelers read books, now,” he said. “But they’re all reading blogs.”

His airline chat reports are also found on Twitter (#travelskills).

“Make yourself a source of helpful information,” he told the group. “Put your face on there. But don’t just promote your own stuff.”

Following the meeting, some members toured the museum in the same building. Presidio Trust historian Barbara Berglund described the current exhibition based on the mass evacuation of Japanese Americans during World War II.

Many thanks to Lee Daley, who coordinated this insightful event at the beautiful Officers’ Club in San Francisco’s Presidio National Park.