Elevator Pitch Examples: A Travel Agent Approach
Looking for some elevator pitch examples for travel agents? We've got 'em. 🙂
Half (if not more) of working as a travel agent is sales. Every agent knows the importance of customer service––going the extra mile and booking a flawless trip so first-time clients become lifetime clients. But generating sales can be a great pain point for some agents, and it’s not likely your love of sales is what attracted you to the industry. (Who am I to say?) But how do you set yourself apart from other agents in the ever-growing travel industry?
If you’re a travel agent, chances are you’ve heard that you are your brand. That you need to sell yourself as much as (if not more than) you need to sell your product. And today we’re going to chat about what is popularly known as “the elevator pitch,” but what I prefer to refer to as “introducing yourself in an interesting way.”
Tick tock. Let’s not waste time, shall we?
The Elevator Pitch.
You Are a Special Snowflake. Yes, You. Before you shout out to the world about your awesome travel agent skills, take a moment to think about what your personal story is. When you’re selling travel, you have to sell yourself first. Gross right? But it really doesn’t have to be. Just because you’re “selling yourself” doesn’t mean you have to pretend to be someone else.
Coming up with your own elevator pitch examples (a 45-second spiel about who you are and what you do) can sound really intimidating. If you’re an introvert like me, this is extra helpful because the talking points will help you feel confident in introducing yourself to others.
But equally important to tell people what you do is to express your passion for the industry in a genuine way. For example, the HAR team expresses their passion very differently from one another, and that’s okay. For your reference:
Bitmojis aside, what I’m talking about here is not your average sales pitch. We all know that in the travel industry, you must first make a personal impression before you can zoom in for the sale. So rather than trying to pitch a product, what I’m talking about here is pitching YOURSELF as a travel professional.
It will be the hook to make the supplier and client want to know what you have to offer. So let’s get going.
Elevator Pitch Examples from Real Travel Agents
Step 1: Getting Personal
When people open their mouths and spew out brilliance, it seems easy and effortless, but the truth is it takes work and crafting. Likely it seems effortless because they’ve done it a bazillion times and put some thought into it.
If you do put thought into “pitching yourself,” then you will make a more memorable impression and when you follow up by handing them your business card, they’ll be more likely to remember you. So let’s look at some elevator pitch examples:
First, let’s get personal:
- What is my personal connection to travel/ the travel industry? i.e. I work for my family-owned host agency that was established in 1974.
- Why do I love travel? i.e. I saved up all my babysitting money for four years to travel to Italy with my grandparents, and I’ve been in love with culturally immersive travel ever since.
- What do I love about selling travel? i.e. Putting together a great FIT is like a logic puzzle for me, and I love the challenge of customizing flawless vacations for clients.
- What formative experience(s) impacted my decision to become a travel agent? i.e. Quite honestly, I had a horrible travel experience with an agent that did not qualify us for a trip, and I ended up being the one to fill in the potholes. I ended up having a ton of fun and wanted to bring that level of service and integrity to the industry.
- What’s my favorite thing about working with my clients? i.e. I absolutely love to see my client’s reactions after their trips! When they come back looking ten years younger, I know I did a good job.
- What kind of travel experience do I want them to have? i.e. I want my clients to discover something about themselves they didn’t know before they traveled!
- What is something that makes me unique as a person? I want to elaborate on this one because in my discussions with agents there are memorable details that come to mind:
- Nikki Miller from Travel with Nikki told me she had visited Disney World more times than years she’s been alive. Whoa.
- Lori Zeller of Travel Leaders, Apple Valley once mentioned to me that her goal was to visit every MN state park in one year, and I thought that was really cool (especially since, at the time, she was beginning to expand her niche to include more adventure travel).
- Ron Hashman of Harshman Travel mentioned to me he works directly with an executive of a cruise line after he once introduced himself to her at a conference. Did I believe him when he told me he received a good rate for his clients for one of their cruise itineraries? You bet.
My favorite things about these elevator pitch examples (which are just a few that come to mind) are that the agents weren’t trying to sell me anything. Heck, they weren’t even trying to impress me. They were just being themselves.
So what is unique about you? I just came back from Cruise360 and maybe you’re an agent that has videos of suites from more than 20 different ships (I know some of you do!) Think of a fun fact or detail about yourself that you can put forward.
Step 2: Just the Facts
Then you’ll want to mix those intangibles with a piece of concrete data. Here are a few elevator pitch examples to get you going:
- How many years of experience do you have selling travel? i.e. 15 (Are you a newbie and worried about it? Just tell them you have 1 year of experience going on 15 😉).
- What is your niche/ travel interest? i.e Adaptive adventure travel with an emphasis on Southeast Asia.
- What certification/training do you have? i.e. I have my ECC through CLIA. I’m a South Africa specialist.
- What’s one piece of data you can give on clients/ client satisfaction? i.e. 90% of my clients are first-time travelers, and 95% of those clients say they will travel again. (Psst! Are you wondering how you can track something like this? Check out our "Vacation in Review" form here!)
- What huge obstacle have you helped a client overcome? No joke, sometimes when a travel agent goes the extra mile, they can save a life. Hopefully, your services won’t need to extend that far but think of one way you’ve really helped a client through a major issue, whether it be rebooking, offering them extra perks, or helping them out with a Visa/Passport bind.
Step 3: Shorter is Sweeter
Now of course, after you brainstorm on these questions, you won’t be able to fit them all into your talking points. But you can mix and match from the brainstorming you did above! Which details do you think are the most engaging? You’ll want to boil this down into about three sentences:
- Who you are, what you do. i.e. I’m a CLIA ECC certified travel agent, with fifteen years of experience selling river cruises.
- What makes you unique as an agent: i.e I was inspired to sell river cruises when my spouse and I renewed our vows on an Avalon Cruise in the Danube, and my goal is to pass along the impact of those memories to my clients.
- Engage them with a question. What is one of your most memorable travel experiences?
Now that wasn’t so scary, was it? Just practice in front of a mirror. And don’t be afraid to brag about yourself a little. You worked hard and you earned it, okay? Be proud!
Step 4: Putting it All Together
Now just mash those sentences together into something that sounds cohesive (usually it will work just to string them together).
Practice it with your friends, or your dog, or at your own face in front of the mirror a bunch of times. Can you get through it in about 45 seconds? Does it need to be shorter? A little longer? Try out a few of your elevator pitch examples on your friends and see which one they like best.
This is Good Info, Can I Do Anything Else with it?
Why yes you can. After spending all that time researching elevator pitch examples, you need to use it to the utmost! You have great info in your elevator pitch so you might as well get as much mileage from it as you can, so here are a few ideas of other ways you can use this info:
- Have it at the ready when someone on FB inquires for a travel agent. Yes, this happens sometimes! When someone in a group or FB page asks a group of agents if they know a good agent, well that agent is YOU. Don’t say just say, call me. Say, I’m a Disney-certified specialist who’s been to WDW 36 times. I’d love to touch base and help you with your trip! The more specific you are, the more you will set yourself apart.
- Include some of it in your bio on your website and social media pages: Is your “about us” description in need of a little spruce up? If you have to wonder, chances are it is. This is a great way to infuse some of your personality, individuality and voice into what might be an otherwise dry description.
- You use the info in a Onesheet for a booth at a trade show, or to leave with a donation if your agency is involved with a local charity event. This provides a little more info than your business card can (but of course you can leave those too!).
- Include the information in your email signature!
A Handy Dandy Worksheet!
Well, as you may know, sometimes we like to give homework here at HAR (don't worry, all of it is extra credit, and none of it is graded)! Now that you've digested all that info above, here's a nifty downloadable worksheet you can use to walk you through writing your own pitch!
When you’re ready to debut your elevator introduction to the world, don’t forget to bring your business cards with you! In fact, if you have a few words from your intro on your card, that will make the other person’s association with you even more memorable!
Again, this isn’t a conventional sales pitch kind of deal. It’s really just to make a memorable first impression so you can make great connections, pique the interest of others, and (if you’re chatting with a client) move in for a potential sale later.
This is even more important for independent travel agency owners since you are so integral to your brand!
Don’t be shy! Try it out! Write it in the comments below and let us know how it went! Drop us a line (email below) and try out your elevator pitch examples on me! I can’t wait to hear them!