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7 Ways Travel Agents Can Gain New Leads
As a hard-working entrepreneur, you’re always looking for ways to increase your travel agent leads. The more leads you get, the more trips you book, and the more trips you book, the more commissions you make. It sounds straightforward, but acquiring more travel agent leads can be a tricky task, especially since today’s online booking websites make it easy for potential clients to curate adventures for themselves.
Because you’re up against modern-day online booking websites, as an independent travel agent, it’s critical to attract new clients by showcasing the value of the services you offer. You provide so much more to clients than any website can, you just have to put some effort into showing them how.
Here are 7 surefire ways to attract potential clients and grow your number of travel agent leads and increase your customer base:
1. Position Yourself as a Specialist Travel Agent
If you do a quick online search for travel agents, you’ll undoubtedly get bombarded with hundreds of names and websites, so you must position yourself as offering a distinct service, so you stand out among the masses. Determine a niche market to focus on and market yourself as a specialist in that area. That way, potential clients will seek you out, rather than the other way around.
2. Seek Out and Reward Referrals
A tried and true method of generating travel agent leads is through word of mouth referrals. People often trust what a friend or family member has to say about a business or service, so rewarding these referrals is an excellent way to drum up new travel agent leads.
A 2019 study by business consulting organization SCORE showed that verbal referrals have the highest lead-to-sale conversion rate.
Offer existing clients a discount or free gift when they make a referral that generates a vacation booking. Extend this offer to clients who leave a glowing review for you online as well. Even if people don’t personally know online reviewers, they often trust reviews left about a product or service experience.
When you reward referrals, you’ll gain travel agent leads, make your existing clients happy, and your travel agency business will continue to grow.
3. Don’t Be Afraid of Complicated Trips
If a trip is simple, then that’s one more reason a potential client could just book it themselves! Don’t shy away from curating fantastically-elaborate vacations for clients because this will surely showcase how valuable your travel agent knowledge and expertise is.
Some independent travel agents are scared off by complicated trips when they should be utilizing the opportunity to increase travel agent leads. Other excellent complex booking opportunities to always say yes to include:
- International Business Travel
- Around-the-World Trips for Retirees
- Vacation Packages for Large Groups
4. Get Active on Social Media
Social media is an invaluable tool you can use to gain more travel agent leads. What makes it so wonderful is the fact that it is FREE and used by millions every single day! The trick to truly utilizing social media to its full potential is to stay active. If you don’t post for a while or interact with users’ comments or questions, you’ll drop off their social media radar, and any previous efforts of yours to woo them to your business will be in vain.
You don’t have to designate hours a day to keep your social media presence alive, just a few minutes a day will suffice! So get active and stay active to see the greatest social media results possible.
There are several companies that provide free digital marketing elements for travel agents that can save time on your social media production and maximize your travel agency marketing efforts.
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5. Maintain Consistency Across All Platforms
You don’t want to come across as a flighty inexperienced travel agent, even if you are newer to the game. Carefully think about how you want to define your brand image and keep that message clear across all platforms, including:
- Social Media
- Handing Out Business Cards
If you have a niche market you consistently focus on, keep your focus there to attract clients interested in that market. It’s also imperative that you remain professional across all platforms and keep the pictures and posts you share in good taste.
6. Continue Your Travel Education and Highlight Your Credentials
Set yourself apart by highlighting your travel agency experience and your ongoing education. Potential clients will put more trust in your travel agent skills if they see your commitment level, so don’t be afraid to show it off.
Even if you don’t have a ton of experience in the field, that doesn’t mean you can’t get new travel agent leads. Invest in your business by attending a travel conference and then promote it. Or, you could even go on an interesting trip and post tips and tricks for potential clients to use.
7. Enlist Help in Lead Generation
It’s possible to perfect your sales pitch and do everything you can to showcase your value and still come up short in obtaining travel agent leads. Don’t take it personally; you can only do so much as an independent travel agent.
An incredible way to generate more travel agent leads is to connect with a host travel agency like Travel Planners International. When you are a part of a host agency, you gain access to an extensive number of benefits to help you turn viable leads into returning customers.
Whether you are learning how to become a travel agent or are already an experienced agent, host agencies like TPI have connections with preferred suppliers and offer direction and support that you can’t get on your own. There’s no shame in asking for help to score more travel agent leads — thousands of agents around the world partner with host agencies to increase their business. In addition, you will gain access to innovative travel agency software (including robust travel agency back office software technology).
Getting more clients for your travel agency business isn’t an exact science, but implementing these 7 tips is a great start and will put you on the right track to travel agent success. For more inspiration on how to rock your travel agency business, read some of our Rockstar Success Stories.
You work hard. You deserve more travel agent leads, more commission, more support, and more connections.
Contact us today to find out how taking advantage of our host travel agency can benefit your business.