Do you remember the Jet Blue episode a couple of years ago where a flight attendant cursed over a loudspeaker and then disembarked from the airplane? People’s reactions to the event, including my own, shifted uneasily as we all tried to accommodate the flight attendant’s acts in our own ethical and professional framework. Following the story, it was easy to feel empathy for both sides. Certainly we have all seen rude passengers and surly flight attendants. Yet, each time I mentally review what actually happened, I feel the same discomfort that I feel when I see signs behind the counter of a store that say “You want it when?” Read the rest of this entry »
I once suggested travel professionals give their clients a subscription to Conde Nast Traveler to help them dream. A reader expressed concern at that tactic. After all, that magazine, and others like it, are filled with opportunities and solicitations to buy travel. Why give your client a magazine that provides so much travel advertising?
Because you don’t sell travel.
Your clients don’t need you to buy travel. They can buy travel anywhere. They can buy travel on the internet, from a supplier direct or from the agency down the street. They will encounter a thousand travel ads between visits with you. That’s a great thing! Suppliers spend money, and lots of it, marketing travel. You want your clients to want to travel. You want them to see as much advertising as possible! Read the rest of this entry »
Customer service. Everybody talks about it, but the fact of the matter is, good customer service can be pretty difficult to find. Think about your day-to-day transactions and how often the companies and businesses with which you deal let you down by failing to deliver even a base-line degree of good customer consideration.
Are you giving good customer service? Here’s the test: how many of your clients i) repeat travel with you more than twice; and ii) refer other people to you? If a high percentage of your clients are both repeat traveling with you and referring others, congratulations! If either of those percentages are looking a bit anemic, however, here’s an infusion of advice. The 365 Guide will be spending this week giving you the five most important customer service rules to put into practice for your travel agency. Follow these simple prescriptions and your repeat business and referrals will begin to climb. Read the rest of this entry »
This week we have been reviewing key elements of your business to ensure that we are tuned up for the rest of the year. Now, let’s make sure that we are aware of two key market concerns: competition and customer satisfaction. These two areas will influence the direction your strategies take as you design and later implement your objectives. Your goals may be influenced by each. Understanding each of these market factors will help you to better prepare for the upcoming year. Read the rest of this entry »
We all read so much these days in the current economic climate about marketing, advertising, technology and strategic planning. And yes – much is talked and written about customer contact and customer relationship management.
It seems to me that when contact with our clients and customers is referred to using some of these terms, that it almost implies a detached and impersonal manner. Unintentional for sure, but nevertheless that’s how I perceive it!
I’ve spent my entire working life (over 40 years) in the travel industry and I’ve considered every one of those years to be also working in the customer service business. That’s right – interacting and dealing with people, human beings…..not faceless entities that I have to ‘manage a relationship’ with. Read the rest of this entry »