For Alum and Conservationist Story Clark, Audio Stories Connect Listeners to the Places Around Them

Story Clark 71F’s company, TravelStorysGPS, enables organizations to create high-quality, mini-podcast-like audio content that tells authentic stories about local places and travel routes. Using GPS technology, the audio launches automatically and hands-free as travelers approach sites of interest. The podcasts can also be accessed remotely for a virtual experience.

When Clark first started the company, she didn’t know much about launching a technology business. She’d already had two highly successful careers, first in the field of conservation and then in conservation finance, even teaching the latter subject at both Stanford and Yale Universities executive training programs. But Clark knew that harnessing the power of smartphones to tell place-based stories could forge a deeper connection between people and locations—an essential component of most conservation work.

“I had this real origin moment. I had conservation clients all over the U.S., but I couldn't talk anybody into doing this type of storytelling. I'd always loved technology, so I decided, very naively in hindsight, to just jump off that cliff and do the project myself.”

While Clark may refer to the decision as a jump, launching TravelStorysGPS proved more a leap of faith—and a successful one at that. Her current clients range from businesses and tourism agencies to cultural, recreational, and educational organizations. TravelStorysGPS has already produced over 6,000 mini-podcasts in more than 170 audio tours in 37 states and 3 countries. And one of the newest clients? Clark’s alma mater, Hampshire College.

When the pandemic hit, Clark reached out to Hampshire College about creating a virtual audio tour using her company’s TravelStorys™ mobile and web-based platforms. Like many colleges, Hampshire recognized the need for more robust and dynamic virtual experiences so that prospective students could engage with the campus when unable to physically visit. Hampshire launched its TravelStorys onsite and remote campus tour in March.

Download the App or view Hampshire’s TravelStorys via web browser.

Of having TravelStorys help tell the College’s story, Clark says, “If I hadn't gone to Hampshire, I would never have had the confidence to strike out on my own. I learned how to get work done independently and without somebody telling me I had to do it. And those skills were very valuable working in a field where I've founded organizations and been in leadership positions. So Hampshire really prepared me very well for my life. It’s been wonderful to help Hampshire tell that story to future students as well.”

Article Tags