To survive in a new competitive era, travel agents must exploit the profit opportunities of every transaction and every client, especially in leisure sales, Lee Rosen, CEO of Leisure Pops, the latest innovation in travel merchandising, said in an interview with Travel Agent marking the launch of the new system.
Rosen, best known as the founder and owner of TRAMS Inc until its sale to Sabre-Holdings in 2007, also served as general manager of Sabre Leisure worldwide. When Rosen sold TRAMS to Sabre there were over 11,000 agencies using Trams Back Office and over 40,000 travel agents using ClientBase.
“Leisure Pops will provide agency and industry suppliers with a creative interface where it’s needed most - at the point of sale," Rosen said. "Leisure Pops is a merchandising system as it uses intelligence form the point of sale to help agents direct sales to preferred suppliers and to add value to client relationships. In the end it will deliver more commission revenue.”
Leisure Pops are "Pops" or on screen reminders that appear from a software application that is installed and runs on a travel agent’s desktop. At the appropriate time within the travel transaction Leisure Pops will ‘Pop’ with intelligent information and links to help agents sell more preferred suppliers and more add-on products.
The agent controls all ‘Pops’, Rosen notes, so only intelligent, value-added content is shown from preferred suppliers. “Leisure Pops will never inundate agents with too many Pops because agent users control what Pops are seen,” Rosen said.
Leisure Pops are intelligent - they know the agents preferred suppliers, know what agents are looking for and what options agents are receiving. They are programmed to add more value for clients and generate more commission revenue.
When searching for a product, the preferred supplier options automatically ‘Pop,’ thus bringing more attention to the preferred option and more preferred supplier sales.
When selling a product, Leisure Pops automatically searches for add-on options – and deals - that agents can then offer to clients. This adds more value for the client and more commission for the agent.
Leisure Pops can assist agents in meeting supplier sales benchmarks and consortia goals that may qualify the agency for higher incentive pay, for example. And it allows individual agents to maximize sales opportunities while the transaction is happening. All that information prior only in the back room and not available at the point of sale when needed will now automatically Pop for the agents when applicable and when most effective.
For example, an agency may have blocked space or higher commissions on a specific cruise departure. With Leisure Pops when an agent queries for available for cruises close to that departure Leisure Pops will automatically Pop to remind the agent of their special offer plus provide links to easily integrate or move the agent to the appropriate place bringing all data with them automatically.
Leisure Pops intelligence can also help agents to sell more upgrades, a vital source of revenue. Leisure Pops automatically offers upgrade options and special deals, giving agents the ability to better serve clients and make more commission.
Other key features include the ability to make offers specific to travel dates, destination or origination point, travel type, fare range, supplier, payment type and more.
Leisure Pops only displays highly content-relevant offers that benefit agents and travelers. The leisure agent – or agency manager - decide what ‘triggers’ or what activity generates a Leisure Pop.
Triggers can be dependent upon reservation system viewed, information requested, or information received back. Leisure Pops reads all major leisure supplier websites as well as all four GDSs.
Leisure Pops also saves time and makes add-on booking extremely efficient for the agent. Not only does Leisure Pops "Pop" or remind the agent of the opportunity, but then Leisure Pops copies data from the agents system (GDS or local) into the reservation system being used, and also copies confirmation data back to the agent's processing system. Add-on bookings can literally be done with four clicks.
“I feel strongly that the right "Pop's" - intelligently programmed at the point of sale - can really help agents, and the suppliers supporting those agents," Rosen said. "Plus if we can make the process easy and efficient, it helps everyone. Agents must work more closely with their clients and know them better to offer pertinent and special product offerings. Leisure Pops is the great way to do this,” Rosen said. “Leisure Pops will close the gap in travel agents and supplier merchandising.”
The price for an agent is $10 per month, Rosen says, but notes that several suppliers and agency groups are sponsoring select agents so they get access to Leisure Pops free. Typically these suppliers provide Leisure Pops to their top producers or preferred agents.
Agents can e-mail [email protected] to see if suppliers or groups they are working with sponsor Leisure Pops for their select agents. While agents can program their own pops there is a very small fee per pop for agents to cover the design and content of the pop.
Free 30-day trials are available and installation is quick. A new website, www.leisurepops.com offers detailed information on the program as well a Power Point presentation with sample screens and a Q&A.