After 20 years in the agency business, Michelle Younis knows that when it comes to building relationships with clients, there’s no substitute for the personal touch.
“I take a genuine interest not only in their travel plans but in their lives. When people sense you care, they will only ever want to work with you and they will tell others. My referral business has been through the roof this year and I attribute that to the relationships I’ve built with my clients,” Younis says.
She also makes sure to follow up with clients when they return from a trip and compensate them for any bumps in the road they may have experienced. “It means lots to them; it shows you really care and deepens that relationship.”
Communicating with clients in a timely manner, such as returning phone calls promptly, is also key, as is “keeping in touch even when they don’t have any travel currently booked. It ensures they remember you [and] you’re the one they’ll call when they do [want to make travel plans].”
Younis is also “a consummate learner, always researching new destinations for her clients’ next trips, and always willing to be coached on different techniques that will improve her sales and relationship building skills,” says John Connors, branch sales manager at AAA Carolinas.
Her desire to learn has also earned her certification as a destination specialist for the Caribbean, Alaska, Hawaii, the South Pacific and all things Disney, as well being a lifestyle specialist in luxury travel. For several years now, she has been a Travel Impressions Top Producer for AAA Carolinas, contributing to her nearly $2 million in annual sales.
During the school year, Younis is on the committee for Micah’s Backpack, “which provides meals and snacks for children in our area who would otherwise go hungry during the weekends due to their dependency on school meals.”