Many times I am asked, “What are the best marketing strategies for agencies in today’s market?” What I mostly say is, “Do it all.” For that statement I get the thanks-for-nothing look.
What I mean is the following: I hear from many advisors that they still follow traditional marketing channels such as local newspaper, word of mouth and direct mail. Then others tell me that they don’t ever meet their client base and everything is done on the Internet. I meet others that say they interview their clients to decide if they will work with them at all before they take them on. Which is the best route? I can tell you they all are. The most successful travel advisors are the ones that follow what we call a multichannel approach.
All your clients are different and you must meet the communication needs that each and everyone of them prefer. If you ever want to get a good snapshot of what consumers look at, jump on a train or a bus. You will see newspapers, books, eReaders, tablets, smartphones. It is all over the place and these are all advertising vehicles for you.
At Luxury Travel Advisor we take the multichannel approach, as well. We have print ads, digital ads, we attend live events and have a strong social media strategy. That combination makes our voice the largest in the marketplace to sellers of luxury travel experiences.
One of the jobs I had as a twentysomething was as a ski tour guide for Green Mountain Tours of Maplewood, N.J. And I recently ran into an old friend at—of all the places—our live event Luxury Travel Exchange. Carolyn Hendricks, pictured here with me and her team, is the owner of WorldWide Travel Adventures, a member of Signature Travel Network. I haven’t seen her in 25 years, had no clue she owned an agency and was so pleased to catch up with her. Our passion for travel was fostered together at Green Mountain Tours, but we went our separate ways only to be connected later in our careers. Now I could have found her through many different channels. In this case it was a live event.
So take my advice and do it all and your business will continue to grow.