Tammy the Travel Agent discovers how a consortium can help her grow as an agent.
This is the seventh in a series of fictional stories that we find new travel agent Tammy in as she learns more about the day-to-day challenges of selling travel.
Veteran agent Marge is explaining to Tammy why their agency finds it important to align themselves with a consortium and all the ways the relationship helps the business.
Tammy: I don’t get why we need to work with a consortium if this is your business and you’ve been in this industry for so many years?
Marge: Belonging to a consortium helps old timers like me, as well as new agents like you. Plus, our relationship with the consortium helps us to grow our business by acquiring new leads and new clients. Our consortium provides a lead generation program via the Internet that promotes our sales specialties. Consumers can choose to work with us based on our location and/or specialties and can even read reviews about us before they contact us.
Tammy: So our consortium has a profile that outlines everything that makes our agency great? Does it include our specialties, including destinations and niches? What about the supplier partners we work with?
Marge: Yes, it includes all of that and, of course, our contact information so the prospects can reach out to us via phone or email. The consortium also offers other marketing and technology tools that we personally use to increase sales. Our website is something we built with their tools, including the way we can put special timely promotions on it. We also use their direct mail and email marketing programs to reach out to clients.
Tammy: Wow, that makes it easy for prospects to decide if we’re the right agents for them. I love that! I thought you did all that yourself and was wondering how you had the time.
Marge: Exactly! I’d rather spend my time selling than creating marketing pieces from scratch. I’m even thinking about using one of our consortium’s customizable magazine publications to really try and build our destination wedding market.
Tammy: And it’ll look like a magazine that our agency created? That would impress me if I was booking a destination wedding.
Marge: Well, let’s talk work relationships. Networking and relationships with supplier partners are more plusses we can take advantage of through the consortium. Not only do these relationships offer us higher commissions, they help us provide exclusive offers to our clients.
Tammy: Yes! I’m all for making more money.
Marge: Our consortium also provides the online educational courses that you have been working on lately.
Tammy: Oh, those have been so helpful in providing sales tips and expanding my knowledge on travel products and the industry in general. They’re kind of fun too.
Marge: I’m glad you like them because there is a reason I’ve been explaining all that our consortium does for us. You and I are going to its national conference, where we can have on-site training, meet with many of our supplier partners, and generally get recharged for the spring selling season.
Tammy: I’m psyched and ready to go! When do we leave?