Fireside Chats, Agent Certification Among Ensemble Firsts

Ensemble Travel Group has unveiled details of its 2009 International Conference set for October 21-25 at The Fairmont Banff Springs in Calgary, Alberta.  This year’s meeting is focused on creating opportunities in a challenging marketplace— how to identify them and, more importantly, how to maximize every transaction to its fullest profit potential.

“As an organization, Ensemble Travel Group is doing a 180 compared to what many businesses do when they slash programs and marketing budgets in order to save money in tough economic times,” said Jack Mannix, president and CEO. “Instead, we are maintaining, and in some areas like marketing and technology, proactively increasing our efforts in a strategic manner on behalf of our membership. So in Banff, much of our focus will be inward, showcasing Ensemble Travel Group’s diverse products, services, and preferred suppliers and making sure our membership is thoroughly trained and equipped to capitalize on this powerful and competitive collection of programs.”

The 2009 Ensemble Travel Group International Conference will feature a number of firsts for the audience of approximately 800 U.S. and Canadian members, suppliers, and guests:

*    Two powerful speakers – “Adventurer-survivor” Chris Leudi on Wednesday, October 21 (sponsored by Classic Vacations and Holland America Line) and television journalist Forrest Sawyer on Thursday, October 22;
*    Fireside chats – Small, informal group discussions on eight diverse topics ranging from working with charities as part of the agency’s marketing plan to how to use blogging to bond with your clients;
*    Frontline Agent Track – Interactive, two-day training course focusing on selling preferred suppliers and the integrated use of all Ensemble Travel Group marketing tools, culminating in “Ensemble Specialist” certification;
*    New breakfast format – “Freestyle” breakfast on Thursday, sponsored by Norwegian Cruise Line and Breakfast in Bed on Friday, sponsored by Royal Caribbean;

Technology will also take center stage at the Conference as a variety of conference sessions feature the power of the Ensemble Client Sites, the Ensemble Extranet, and the ClientBase-CRM functionality as a customer relationship builder and ultimate sales driver. The agenda also features popular member-supplier exchanges on Thursday and Friday, as well as the annual Circle of Excellence Black Tie Dinner honoring Ensemble Travel Group’s top 100 producers on Thursday evening.

Founded in 1968, Ensemble Travel Group is a  member-owned international organization of nearly 1,000 professional travel agencies in the U.S. and Canada.