We are all in sales. No one eats unless something is sold—it is that simple. However, many travel agents do not see themselves as salespeople. They are purveyors of information, keepers of knowledge, and trusted confidantes. But let’s not forget we can gather all the information in the world, store it all in our heads and offer the best advice to kings and queens; but, if we don’t ask for the sale, we are never going to get it. Sometimes we are our own worst enemy simply because we fail to do the most basic step in the sales process—asking for it!
Do you sell cruises? If so, hopefully you have been on one and know how much fun they can be. Hopefully you have been on one with some friends or family members and know how much more fun they can be. How many of you will ask a client who just booked a cruise if they have any friends or family that might like to join them? It is so simple and I can guarantee that by adding that simple question into your arsenal, that you will receive more bookings and maybe a group or two.
Do you have a blog or a Facebook page? By now, hopefully you realize that those two platforms are not the right ones for a hard sell. But how do you generate comments and otherwise have your followers and fans do what you want? If you want them to comment, ask them to comment! If you want them to take a survey, ask them! Unfortunately, human nature suggests that we will do as little as possible unless told or asked.
Do you have an email newsletter? How do you get your subscribers? You might have a link at the bottom of your emails or a form on your website. But is that enough? Not even close. Ask them specifically to subscribe and tell them what they will get in return. Last week, I received an unsolicited email. It was travel related and I am not sure how they received my email address; but the message was simple. “We are a travel company and we think we can help. We are sending you this email one time and asking that you subscribe and check us out. If you like us–wonderful. If not, just unsubscribe.” The message was simple. It was effective. I subscribed.
Sometimes the most simple things allude us. For the most part, people will do the bare minimum to get by; but they are more than willing to go the extra mile if asked. How about you? Will you comment on this column? Will you ask someone to like, follow, subscribe or invite a friend? Will you click on the social media icons up to and share this with your friends on Facebook and followers on Twitter?