This year has been interesting to put it mildly. Our first large incentive group, new independent agents, revitalized website and first public speaking engagement are all 2010 happenings at my agency. I’ve made quite a few changes in my marketing plan. I have started utilizing social networking more and have been attending trade shows and industry events weekly. All are part of my new agency plan. The agency vibe has been a bit stagnate over the past few years and I felt it was time to put some new game plans into action. I’ve also ramped up my traveling this year in favor of touring as many locations and resorts as possible. My clients want the inside scoop and it’s my job to bring it to them.
My biggest challenge this year has been finding qualified independent agents who have a passion for the travel business. I do see some new and younger faces at the events I’ve been attending this year and that leads me to believe there is resurgence happening in the industry. For so many years, I had always been the youngest in the room. From talking to friends and friends of friends, I do find that most people are intrigued by my business and find it fascinating. Which is exactly why I have always been surprised that more young people aren’t interested in this industry. My goal is to help a newcomer to this business become successful, as someone did for me many years ago (thank you Sue Sheehan)!
The Tropical Travelers has once again been named Best of the Best by Travel Impressions–our fifth year running. We are extremely excited about this accolade and are looking forward to another great year with our favorite tour operator. In addition, we were just awarded a 3 Diamond status at Karisma Resorts. We’ve put in a lot of long hours this year and plan to keep the momentum going through 2011.
Having hired an SEO (search engine optimization) company a few months ago, I’m already seeing a surge in web traffic from online searches. In addition, we’ve started taking seminars on how to better approach social networking. There is a fine line between being good and being obnoxious and I want to learn as much as possible to stay on the right side of the line. I’ve begun sending out newsletters to my database with more regularity and have been seeing positive results from this as well.
Overall, I see a bright future for the travel industry. I feel that many people are inundated with too much information from the Internet and need a specialist to steer them in the right direction. I’m looking forward to leading them down that tropical path.
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