First of all, how are you and your Family doing in these COVID-19 Times?
Bruno Unger: Thanks for asking. As far as possible, we’re all fine.
Tell us about you, your Career, how you Founded or Joined Falando de Viagem
Bruno Unger: I can say that embryonic projects based on the technological environment have always been present in my journey. I started back there, in the late ’90s, when the wide access to the internet was still in its infancy in Brazil.
I was a pioneer in monetizing existing online chat, forum and social network communities. I had several of these virtual communities, which accumulated about 15 million people, at a time when almost no one imagined it was possible to make money from the internet.
Precisely because of this pioneering spirit, I gained prominence in the media, especially in 2007, after an unusual commercial transaction for the time.
Due to the repercussion of the event, I was invited to work for two social networks in Germany, arousing my interest in betting on my social network. That’s how Falando de Viagem (FDV) came about, a social network where travelers can exchange information, tips and even arrange a tour together.
To play it, I count on the partnership of Gabriel Dias, certainly one of the people with the greatest know-how in tourism in Brazil.
How does Falando de Viagem Innovate?
Bruno Unger: Falando de Viagem innovated precisely by placing itself not only as a tourist information portal, but a space that allows interactivity that is typical of a social network and that makes every user a true travel blogger, who actively participates in the construction of the space by sharing relevant articles about their experiences.
Currently, we have more than 20 thousand articles and more than 1 million users per month, who seek the best travel information.
How the Coronavirus Pandemic affects your Business and how are you coping?
Bruno Unger: Today we can say that everyone is in crisis. But in these ten years of history, the FDV has followed crises in the countries of origin of travel.
So, learning from these difficult moments to hold statistics, paying attention to subjects that may also be relevant for potential travelers and clients, such as information about financial benefits, technology, credit card and shopping in general.
In fact, no business can be anchored only on a product or service, as we live in a multifaceted and volatile reality.
Did you have to make Difficult Choices, and what are the Lessons Learned?
Bruno Unger: Certainly, tourism is one of the areas impacted by the COVID-19 and will undergo a major transformation. What remains for us is to adapt to this new moment that is coming, and I believe that we are doing this homework well.
For now, we are focusing on the offer of national destinations and having the transparency to report the possible problems that users may have at the chosen destination, complementing the alerts with tips on decisions and care to be taken if the issues do occur.
How do you Deal with Stress and Anxiety, how do you Project yourself and Falando de Viagem in the Future?
Bruno Unger: We believe that the worst moment is over, as we experience a new wave in tourist destination research. I believe that when this is completely over, people will want to stop, breathe and reflect on the current moment.
Most people will want to travel to relax and better enjoy the freedom to live with family and friends. And at this moment, in the tourist boom, the FDV will be even more prepared to alongside our users, innovate so that they can travel more and more cheaply and safely and have one of the best experiences of their lives.
Who are your Competitors? And how do you plan to Stay in the Game?
Bruno Unger: We don’t have direct competitors, but indirectly I can name Tripadvisor and Lonelyplanet as our major competitors.
Your Final Thoughts
Bruno Unger: The pandemic will change the world, and tourism will not get away with it. But I believe that with this change, new and rich opportunities will also emerge, be it for travel, to undertake and to innovate.
It’s challenging and Falando de Viagem wants to travel with this new world with its audience, and the new users that will emerge!