Avoya Travel’s 7 Sales Tips for Success in 2020 Wave and Beyond

December 27, 2019

What better time for setting new habits, goals, and resolutions than during the close of one year and beginning of another? Better yet, at the end of a decade just before another begins! However, to truly set yourself up for success with these new intentions, whether personal or professional, it’s essential to first take the time to pause for reflection.

From a professional standpoint, look back at the habits you developed or practiced this year, were they an asset to your overall business strategy? How about your communication to potential and existing clients – are there any adjustments you can make to help them more clearly understand the value you provide and make them a client for life? Even the smallest recurring action can have a significant impact on the big picture. So, take some time to acknowledge the strategies you’ve taken this past year, where they have led you, and figure out what’s working for you and what’s not. From there you’ll be able to identify the improvements you’d like to make in the new year and what it’ll take to achieve them.

At Avoya Travel we’re giving travel agents a head start with these seven sales tips you can apply to your 2020 strategy for success during Wave Season and beyond.

1. Never stop learning.

The travel industry, suppliers, cruise ships, resorts, and products and destinations are always changing. If one ever reaches a point when they think they know it all and stops actively learning, they risk missing out on opportunities to upsell clients, provide their clients with the best value or may even lose credibility if they don’t come across as an expert.

2. The fortune is in the follow-up. 

Clients today have a wide selection of booking options to choose from and have grown accustom to having information and results available at their fingertips. They’re also instant gratification oriented, which means they want to receive exactly what they want right away. As a successful independent travel agency owner, timely follow-ups are key at every point in the vacation planning and booking process and will keep you top of mind. If they have to wait, they’ll move on.

Bonus tip: During Wave Season, follow up quickly and consistently as the booking window is narrower; travelers book their vacations faster during the first 3 months of the year. If you wait 2–3 days between each contact point, they’re going to book, but not with you!

3. Understand your unique selling proposition.

Provide your client with the answer to the question “Why should I book with you?” before they ask it. If they ask it, it could potentially be too late and might signify that they’ve been thinking it all along and haven’t heard you provide an answer. Communicate your value and what sets you apart from the competition from the get-go, and supplement with the next tip.

4. Focus on long-term impact.

Travel sales is about developing relationships rather than focusing on transactions if one wants to develop long-term repeat clients and referrals. If you find yourself focusing heavily on “just making the sale”, take a step back and remember why you decided to become a travel advisor. Was it to simply make sales, or was it because you have a passion for travel and want to pass that on to others and help them create lasting memories? Build and nurture relationships with your clients. Once they get to know you and you them, you’ll be able to cultivate a long-term, fulfilling relationship and maybe not just a client for life, but quite possibly a friend as well.

5. Specialization isn’t limited to a product or vendor.

It could be an entire genre or a demographic. Find out what you are passionate about and enjoy selling — or who you enjoy selling to! Then focus on fine tuning your skills and expertise in that area.

Bonus tip: Sell what you know during Wave Season and you’ll maximize sales. Wave is not a time to experiment and bounce around, but a time to focus on your specialties. It requires more time and energy to learn something you’re not familiar with in order to become an expert and make a sale. Plus, it’s more efficient and beneficial to stick to what you know during this high-demand, rapidly paced timeframe.

6. Anticipate and address.

By being a specialist, one knows their client’s needs and concerns before they do. Be proactive with your communication, recommendations, and follow-ups — the best defense is a good offense.

7. Authenticity is key. 

People buy from people they like. If one sounds like a “professional autoresponder”, the client might as well book on their own. Booking with a travel advisor brings back the element of human connection, and aside from the many other benefits of using a travel advisor, that’s one of the main reasons many travelers choose to book with an advisor.

Bonus tip: Don’t forget to have some fun while you’re at it!

Looking for even more helpful tips as you prepare for Wave Season and 2020? You can find more success tips from million dollar Independent Agencies in the Avoya Network™ here and here. To learn more about becoming a part of the Avoya Travel Network, visit www.AvoyaNetwork.com or contact us at 1-855-875-5861.