Another lesson learned | Travel Research Online


Another lesson learned

Last month, I wrote about learning the ins and outs of the tools you have at your service. I vowed to delve deeper into my email broadcasting program and learn some more effective ways to use the tool. After all, I was paying for the full service and not some “email-lite”. Well, I dug a little deeper and realized that I had probably passed up hundreds (if not thousands) of opportunities over the past two years.

As I mentioned, I use a company called AWeber Communications (yes, click there and sign up and I earn a few pennies) and the last time, I learned how to segment my list based on geography. This time I wanted to see how I did if I segmented it based on interest level.

My monthly newsletter went out last Saturday. On Monday, I started to look at the reports. I saw a very decent open rate (68.1%) and a healthy click-through rate of 37.5%. For AWeber, the open rate is defined as the percentage of emails that were sent which were opened. The click through rate is defined as the percent of emails that were sent where the recipient actually clicked on one of the links. My mailing list is a shade over 12,000 names, so there were 8,160 people who actually opened (and hopefully read) my email—I chalk this up to a subject line that didn’t turn them off. 4,500 of them actually clicked on one of the links—I chalk this up to effectively enticing them to explore further.

Now most of the clicks were either to the main page of my site, my blog, or to a specific blog entry. But I was concerned with two specific links for two groups we have departing this summer. I ran a report on those two links and found that 31 people clicked on the link to our Beaches Boscobel trip and 39 clicked on the link to our Beaches Turks & Caicos trip. The question remained how to get them to act on their interest.

The Solution

I re-ran the report separately and created two unique segmented lists—’Boscobel Clickers’ and ‘Turks Clickers’. I had already enticed them to check it out, they had already downloaded the flier about the trip, they had already seen the promotional photos, and perhaps they had clicked on to see some client photos from last year. I needed something more. So I went to YouTube and found two videos produced by on the two properties. I uploaded them to my website figuring that if a picture is worth a thousand words, that a video must be worth—a booking or two.

I sent separate emails to these two separate groups. It was not a newsletter, but a general memo suggesting if they were interested in this trip (of course I already knew they were) they could view a brand new video on our site. I included a link and sent it off.

By the end of the day, 13 had opened the Boscobel one and 3 had viewed the video. 14 had opened the Turks & Caicos email and 2 had viewed the video.


Based on this, one might assume that there were 5 serious prospects on these two trips at the end of the day. The assumption would be wrong. At the end of the day there was only one serious prospect and four confirmed bookings!

In a virtual world, sometimes we no longer have the luxury of looking at someone in the eye to read emotion so we need to do the next best thing. Since my business is 95% virtual, a system in place like this will allow me to get back some of that luxury.  Not only do I know how many people open my emails, now I know specifically what intrigued them, and most importantly I know who they are!

All in all, it was a successful day last Monday. I will let you do the math based on your own commission structure with Beaches, but for me, this was well worth the 40 minutes of time. I wonder what I will learn next week?

  One thought on “Another lesson learned

  1. Wei says:

    this is fantastic, John,

    Congratulations! And this is exactly the article which will put me into action of a similar nature.

Share your thoughts on “Another lesson learned”

You must be logged in to post a comment.