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What Agents Want From a ConsortiumJanuary 9, 2013 By: Adam Leposa
What do you think of your consortium? Recently Travel Agent reached out to our readers and asked them to share their thoughts on how their consortium is doing and what makes a good one.
Most of the agents we spoke with mentioned robust and friendly support as one of the top qualities of their consortium.
Michelle Welch Jackson of Cruise Holidays writes, “Being a part of the Travel Leaders Leisure Group/Cruise Holidays family has been one of the best decisions I have made. The support team is easy to work with and eager to help in any way possible. The relationships I have formed with suppliers and other agents have helped me grow my business. I am proud to be a part of this organization.”
“I love being part of Travel Leaders/Cruise Holidays,” agrees Christine Tabaka Luchi. “The support team is always helpful even if I am asking a dumb question. They are also so quick to get back. Meetings and conventions are so much fun but more importantly so informative. The other agents are the most fun group of people who are so willing to share and help each other.”
Many agents who responded also cited good supplier relationships as being one key to success.
Jani Miller writes, “We have been with Ensemble since 2009 and are very pleased with the relationship. Excellent group of preferred suppliers, great marketing program, wonderful support and achievable financial goals. Our associates are happy and when they’re happy…our clients are happy!”
Bob Shaffer of Cruise Holidays, part of Travel Leaders Leisure Group, writes that the franchisor is an “excellent business partner that provides over the top technology, marketing programs, supplier relationships and ongoing agency support.”
Growth and Leadership
Where an organization is isn’t the only important thing – many agents who responded cited where an organization is going as important as well.
“I have been a member of Ensemble Travel Group for quite a few years and its recent growth, improved polish and talented leadership have been fantastic,” writes Goldring Travel. “I find it is, for me, the best fit. Ensemble provides me with a highly customized website, a great marketing plan, truly personalized service, significant innovations (with more about to be announced) and unlike most other consortia, profit sharing from dollar one. When the foregoing is combined with the Hosting Program and added values for our clients (which are on a par or better than the other consortia) it creates a very impressive and profitable package.”
“I've been with MAST for many years,” says Linda Schreiber. “I've been on the board and presently hold a position on the Events and Planning Committee for the many events we hold for our member such as the very successful Sales Convention and our annual Mast Conference being held in Southern California this year. Our Mast Awards event in March is a winner. I feel what Mast does for our members is personal and above the norm, we are people not just numbers.”
Finally, reputation and a defined niche can also be a key factor. Ccruise_gaffney writes, “Virtuoso is unparalleled in the industry for luxury.”
Are these the qualities you are looking for in your consortium? Let us know what you think in the comments below, or on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/TravelAgentMagazine.