Mavian Arocha-Rowe is currently the director of brand communications and content for Vacation Express, where she creates and ensures articulation and consistency of Vacation Express’ desired brand image and position. Her position ensures all communication and marketing efforts are aligned with vision, mission, ambition and brand strategy. She is also the editor-in-chief of Strategy Magazine, a national business lifestyle publication, where she has received accolades from FOLIO Magazine and the Library Journal. Her hands-on experience in the ever-changing business world has ignited her passion and perseverance to creatively fuse Strategy’s “Strategy for Life” slogan.
Mavian Arocha-Rowe is also a Speaker and Advocate for WellSpring Living and on-air contributor for CNN NotiMujer. She provides business consulting to PurseN, a fashion organizational company, and her knack for business is also witnessed within Little Pink Book and La Nueva Voz Latina, where she serves as one of their business blog experts. She has won numerous awards for her work in the travel and publication industries.
Travel Research Online: Though you still work in many publication fields, you moved from broader lifestyle publications to Vacation Express – was there anything which inspired your entering the travel industry?
Mavian Arocha-Rowe: Within my lifestyle magazine days, aside from beauty and fashion, I was at the forefront of reviewing hotels and restaurants. So, let’s just say I was very fond of traveling prior to Vacation Express.
TRO: Is there anything you find particularly rewarding or exciting about working specifically in travel?
MA-R: The world of travel is diverse by itself and for me, that’s where the rewards begin. I am very fond of learning and uncovering cultures and travel provides a constant feed for my craving. I am also very intrigued by hospitality and how serving someone, the correct way, can easily change their attitude. It’s as though you hold their future smiles in your hands.
TRO: Does your work in publication ever get stressful? If so, how do you cope or overcome this?
MA-R: I love what I do and have been working in the field of publishing since I was 18. I don’t consider my work stressful; instead, it’s the people [she says laughing]. Right? And, aside from that, it’s wanting to control everything and not having enough time during the day. When it comes to coping with work and the overwhelming feeling of wanting it done, today; I simply tell myself, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I even have a little cheat sheet that reminds me of God’s power at work: “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.” Plus, I ask myself… “what’s more important, causing myself to be sick because I had to fulfill a deadline or work diligently, give it your full potential and tomorrow is a new day?”
TRO: As director of brand communications and content for Vacation Express, what aspects of your job do you find the most challenging?
MA-R: You might laugh at me, but here it goes… not enough time, but we just covered that. Another challenge is trying to communicate and convey a modern message, yet balance the world of fashion and lifestyle with that of beach travel. Sometimes I am “too out of the box” and I need to remind myself and my team of the constant need to connect with our audience.
TRO: Many agents are aware of the need within their own business, whatever its size, to articulate a clear and consistent brand image and position. Are there any tips you might have for them?
MA-R: Tip number one: Know your audience and whom you want to further target. Understand what your audience wants. Decide who steers the ship. Set the tone and execute. Lastly, content and “its timing” is the new advertising.
TRO: Your experience is far broader than only the travel industry – how do you feel the industry compares to other businesses? What are some areas where you would like to see improvement?
MA-R: I might compare it to having a pulse on the fashion industry to New York City. It’s true what they say… the city and fashion never sleep. Creativity is always blooming, technology plays a huge role, and there is always someone reinventing themselves, for the good. Although pricing is constantly changing for the travel industry, we too should keep adjusting our images and slogans. Plus let’s allow originality to serve as our form of hospitality.
TRO: What is an aspect or characteristic of Vacation Express, and its marketing, which it might surprise most travel agents to learn?
MA-R: The marketing department at Vacation Express works as a creative marketing agency. Travel agents need to consider us as their one-stop-shop.
TRO: Is there anything new or exciting on the horizon for Vacation Express?
MA-R: There is always something new and exciting on the horizon for Vacation Express. As a wise director of content and brand communications, I keep my lips sealed until it’s time to unveil. Which means, stay connected to Vacation Express [with smiles].