|Vice President—Content/Editorial Director, Ruthanne Terrero|
1. Provide what is unique, that which surprises and delights while the client is traveling, that which is loaded with plenty of spark that can fuel bragging rights back home at the country club.
2. Show a level of care that is genuine and not scripted.
3. Craft a travel experience that is seamless and without friction.
4. Deliver what you promise. No one likes a bait-and-switch, even on the most minute scale.
5. Make it simple. Present ideas so brilliant they’ll wish they’d thought of them themselves.
6. Offer pricing that has value. Consumers aren’t always seeing the cheapest offer, they want add-ons that provide a better experience.
7. Customize the experience through a welcome letter in the hotel room or an amenity that has actual meaning based on personal knowledge of your client.
8. Use your colleagues and resources in your networks to expand your knowledge so you come across as an expert in all things.
9. Hint at information that’s not on Google. Indicate that it’s all locked in your mind and not available anywhere else.
10. Drop names. Just do it. It’s showy, but proving you know someone at the hotel who’s going to look after them because of your connections is what you’re all about.
11. Recognize that your offline and online worlds are no longer separate. They have collided and are forever melded together.
12. Have a great website. If you’re in the luxury sector and your website looks like garbage, you’re losing business. The digital world is an extension of your brand. BTW, do you know what your brand is?
13. Know your clients on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook. Record their likes and dislikes in your database but don’t creep them out by letting them feel you’ve been watching them.
14. Promote a lifestyle on your social media outlets. Don’t just post photos of hotel rooms—post sunsets, cocktails and chic fashion wear and exotica that puts your client in the moment.
15. Respect where a client is coming from. Do they want e-mailed documents or hard copies? Updates via texts 24/7 or real phone conversations that require polite inquiries about one’s health and family matters? Spend the time with them if that’s what they want. That’s what they’re paying you for.