Monthly Archives: January 2019

I Had a Dream!

WARNING! The message in my dream could spell the difference between success and failure for your business in 2019.

I did not have a wish or a hope…not that kind of dream. I had a dream-dream that had me tossing and turning in bed.

I was driving to college in mid-August ready to begin another football season for the University of Massachusetts. I was in my fifth year, and knew a lot more than I did as a freshman. A few broken bones destroyed any chance for the NFL Draft, but since I enjoyed the game so much that I pressed on without the hope of having my name embroidered on the back of a NY Giant uniform jersey. Read the rest of this entry »

Selling is a Contact Sport

Our profession has an old saying, “Selling is a contact sport.” This means that to sell something, you must meet with the prospect. You have to put your face in front of people before you can establish rapport and make them feel comfortable enough to do business with you.

You have been working hard to identify and pre-qualify prospects. You have been contacting individuals asking for a few minutes of their time so you can outline your program and its benefits. So, what if everything you have done eventually works? What do you do if your prospect agrees to a personal meeting? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Supplier Profile

There are so many companies that provide travel to destinations around the world, it can be difficult to find the right person for the job. There are companies that can get you anywhere in the world but, a “Jack (or Jill) of all trades” lacks the specialized knowledge needed to give the traveler a thorough plan for their getaway. Fortunately, when it comes to the tropical country of Costa Rica, Costa Rica Dream Adventures is your go-to planner for a trip to this majestic country.

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Posted In: 60-Second Geography

The Charms of Old World Russia

Once one of the most important cities in Russia, Suzdal has a history dating back to around the 11th century. It is a well-preserved image of the old world, with storybook scenes laid out before the traveler. The winters are a wonderland, as snow covers the ground and caps the onion-shaped domes of cathedrals to enhance the audacious colors of blue, green, and gold. Suzdal is a snapshot of beauty that has lasted through the ages. Which is why Super Value Tours has chosen it as one of the destinations on their Enchanting Russia tour package.

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I Like It Here

I like it here. Now. Today.

Although I haven’t seen it (yet), I am sure heaven is everything it is cracked up to be. In fact, I hope to find out firsthand some day. Just not now or, hopefully, not in the near future.

What I am suggesting, and I say this with all sincerity and respect, is that perhaps you are now in a place worth being in. It is only human to seek more at the expense of taking what we already have for granted. Maybe, just maybe, your current existence isn’t quite as bad as it sometimes seems. What I do know is what I get to see, experience and enjoy on a daily basis. And from my viewpoint, after “bebopping” around my section of the world for a number of years, my immediate environment isn’t too shabby. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: 1:1

PictureProf. Carol Dimopoulos is President of Perillo’s Learning Journeys where she brings her passion for personal transformation through transformative travel and community service-based programs to global destinations in Europe, Asia, The Americas, Africa and The Middle East. She is a prominent expert in both business and academia in the field of niche market, social, and transformative travel. Her engagements include speaking and teaching at The NY Times Travel Show, Ensemble Travel Network Conference, Yoga Journal Live, Travel Market Research, The Italian Travel Promotion Council, GIFTE Travel Network as well as numerous shows throughout her 20 year executive travel industry tenure. She is also the USTOA Modern Day Explorer Travel Ambassador to the Islands of Malta. Read the rest of this entry »

I recently found myself flipping through the restaurant review section of my local newspaper and I spotted a “food joint” where I thought I would like to try for an upcoming future event. I had heard good things from friends and felt comfortable in my decision to call and make a reservation for that special night. I began reading the reviews thinking that they would reinforce my decision. I was wrong. I was very wrong. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Editorial Musings

Continuing on my list of resolutions inspired by Travel Pulse, this week, it’s all about the money. If you are the US Bureau of Engraving, making money is a piece of cake—fire up the presses and run off a few million. If you are a small business, unfortunately, it is not that easy! But, it may not be as difficult as you think!
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Posted In: Publishers Corner

Bootstrapping Your Marketing

Marketing is both a noun and a verb.  Much like the word “lightening,”  the one word denotes both the act and the action.  Recently an agent explained to me how difficult it was to fund her marketing efforts.  Without the funds to market, she could not bring in customers and without customers she would never have the funds.

Marketing is, however, not just something you buy.  It’s something you do.  Certainly you can spend vast amounts of money on marketing, but for most service businesses, you can also bootstrap your way into the minds of your local community. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Deck Plans

Tauck Announces New Douro River Ship

Tauck has announced that it will offer its first-ever cruises on the Douro River in Portugal next year. Tauck will feature three new Douro River itineraries aboard a riverboat that’s being designed and built specifically for the Douro. Read the rest of this entry »

What’s Your Deal?

I recently heard this phrase on a new Two and a Half Men show, spoken by Ashton what’s-his-name. It caught my attention and created a giggle.

He was referring to Allen’s son, Jake, as “having no deal.” Or, by my interpretation…no story…no message…no focus…no direction…“no deal.”

So, what’s your deal? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: cartoons

Posted In: TRO SMITH

How to be a Star in your Niche Marketing

We all know the saying, ‘you can’t be everything to everyone’.

Successful niche marketing and specialization in travel are everywhere these days.

There are destination specialists, romance specialists, cruise specialist…the list is as endless as one’s imagination. The most successful of these specialists are doing an amazing job of targeting the right audiences and giving themselves the power to turn away business that doesn’t fit their niche. What an awesome way to focus on clients that matter! Read the rest of this entry »

As many of you know I “shoot from the hip”—so to speak.

I pride myself in being a non-linear speaker who usually ends up talking about what is passing through his mind at the moment. This is both good and bad. It is what it is.

I can assure my audiences of one thing, they can’t finish a sentence for me because where they think I may be going with my current thought may not be where I end up. Follow me? Read the rest of this entry »

Are You a Member Of A Friendly Zoo?

A recent experience reminded me of the concept of the “friendly zoo” as it relates to customer service. I will try to make my story meaningful to you.

I once purchased some electronic equipment from a reputable mail-order outfit in the Midwest. The buying experience went without hitch and I was more than pleased with the product when it arrived. Read the rest of this entry »

Award Show Wisdom

This is the time of year where awards are given out for different reasons by different people—to different people. It is also the time of year where people complain, whine and find excuses why their “favorite” actor, song, play, movie or TV Show did not win a figurine. Isn’t public validation an interesting phenomenon?

This is also the time of year to roll out the Red Carpet and attend a few late night cocktail parties hosted by Vanity Fair so E-Entertainment has something to talk about in their next show.

Admittedly, these types of shows do not hold my interest and I find myself writing future articles, like this one while my wife points out the upsets to me.
My question is: “Why do they pull the hook on some people faster than others? They all say the same thing. Read the rest of this entry »

Transcend Public Opinion (Part Two)

If perception is reality, salespeople have a major obstacle to overcome. Right or wrong, salespeople have apparently earned themselves a less-than-glowing reputation over the years. Many people, in fact, still consider salespeople to be less than honorable, or simply people between “real jobs.”

Frankly, I cast much of the blame on sales managers and sales trainers…especially those who have never actually “carried the bag.” I take offense with a manager or trainer telling me it is my duty to “overcome” people’s objections or to sell people “up,” or to recite any phrase designed to take advantage of an individual’s lack of knowledge, experience, or decision-making ability. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Editorial Musings

Continuing on my list of resolutions inspired by Travel Pulse, this week, it’s all about being proactive. Earlier this week, I read an article about a local shopping center that is in the process of reinventing itself (might be paywalled). The thing was that this upscale center was only eight years old and they were already reinventing. Their reason was to combat the increase of e-commerce. Sound familiar? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Publishers Corner

What’s Your Story?

From earliest childhood, we are taught to listen to stories. We develop a real, active interest in the lead character of a tale. No doubt some people tell stories better than others. But the one story you should spend time writing and polishing is your own. Why are you in travel? What do you do? How do you do it? Have you ever had a really special moment traveling? What was it? Is that why you are a travel agent? Did you travel with your parents? Why do you think people should travel? Read the rest of this entry »

Transcend Public Opinion (Part One)

Over the years, the sales practice has appropriately earned a pretty poor reputation. To grasp the scope of the negative predicament salespeople have created try this exercise: Walk over to the person nearest to you (spouse, friend, co-worker, stranger…it doesn’t matter) and ask what word immediately comes to mind when you say “salesman.”

Did you hear any of these very predictable responses: Sleazy; crooked; fast talking; unscrupulous; dishonest; shifty; lacking trust; lacking ethics; liars; car lots; insurance; egotists; manipulative. I’m sure you can come up with a few thoughts of your own…perhaps even based on a previous personal experience. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Deck Plans

A few months ago, I wrote about my Top Five Aspirational Cruises For 2019. Having been on my first cruise in six years in November, with another coming up in just a few days, I am constantly looking at what I may be able to do next. Part of what makes travel so exciting is going to dream destinations and places that you may never imagine being able to visit.

 

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