1. Video skills! Most of you probably don’t realize that prior to applying for the Ultimate Job, neither of us had ever made or appeared in a video. We’ve had a ton of fun learning video skills and were very flattered that RBG put us in the ‘great video skills’ category with 2 professional videographers. Thanks guys!
2. While social marketing is a big part of our business at home, we had the opportunity to run a proper social marketing campaign leading up to the Top 10 – and did it with fantastic results. Our second place finish with over 3,000 votes and the media attention it garnered in Canada is a feat we will always be proud of. We have our friends and families to thank for coming onboard and making BREL go viral.
3. Our relationship is rock solid. Sure, we’ve been working and travelling together 24/7 for years, but the pressures of the UJ tested all of the couples. We’re proud to say, BREL is stronger than ever.
4. We can prioritize. While the UJ bosses tried to distract us from the official tasks, we stayed focused and created top-notch writing assignments and videos. Of course, it seems now that the ‘fun challenges’ were actually more than fun (oops), but looking back, we wouldn’t have changed a thing. As travel writers on the road, we know all too well the temptations to have fun at the expense of your work and deadlines. We never want to risk turning in mediocre work for the sake of fun.
5. We can stream live-to-the-web! When tasked with a race of putting up our videos of getting to the top 10, we took it one step further – we streamed it live to the web (complete with TV crew in attendance). Sure, this was a risky idea – we could have waited endlessly for the phone to ring with 262 people around the world watching our rejection. And while live-to-the-web didn’t win us the “first-uploaded” contest (a technicality, if you ask us) it’s still a skill we’ll definitely use in the future. Plus it was super cool.
6. Our network of support is fantastic – you voted, you spammed your friends, you followed our blog (we had more comments than anyone!) and we’ll always be thankful.
A huge thank-you to everyone in Kinsale – it’s a fabulous town where the locals and the sponsors made us feel at home (a special shout-out to Mayor O’Brien for your late night drinking and singing). To all the other candidates, we’ll never forget sharing this experience with you all – you were incredible people with incredible skills and personalities and you raised the bar for us on a daily basis. Mark and Denise: we’ve already congratulated you both in person, best of luck on this adventure. And of course, lastly, thanks to RBG: you’ve pulled off a massive social marketing coup and this has been a blast.
The next BREL adventure may not be the Ultimate Job, but it will be Bigger-than-Ultimate. That, we can guarantee. Stay tuned.
photo credit to Susan Jefferies Photography (www.sjpireland.com) – Susan and John were fantastic!