Satisfied customers are a sure-fire way to promote tours. Not only are they likely to book trips with you again in the future, but they're also bound to tell their friends, families and co-workers about their great experience with you. But is a great tour enough?
"No customer wants their business to be taken for granted," said Damon Allan, Maxima Tours. "You have to earn that business at more than just a sublime tour execution."
Here are a few tips from the field on leaving a lasting impression on your customers, long after the tour ends:
We always remind ourselves that without our clients, we wouldn't be doing the jobs that we love to do. For that reason, showing appreciation is crucial. For example, we always recognize return clients with a small token of thanks at the end of their group tour. We're happy to say that up to 50 percent of bookings are past passengers, which we believe is due, in part, by honoring their loyalty.
—Jacqueline Skinner, Target Tours
We offer a loyalty program, which allows guests to receive $150 off their next tour if they travel within one year. On all air-inclusive tours (meaning the group of 10+ purchases air with us), we provide hometown pickup service (i.e. transportation) to and from the airport. We'll even throw a party for the group to get all their necessary documents and information prior to departing!
—Amelia Sugerman, Collette
First and foremost, we show our appreciation through the way we execute our tours. It's almost a subconscious effort, but it's a theme that is prevalent throughout their experience. We also send out some direct communication now and again through our e-newsletters, newsletters and catalogues that we produce. Ultimately, we could always be doing more and look for opportunities all the time on the phone, as well as in person when customers come to our office.
—Damon Allan, Maxima Tours
Written by Cassie Westrate, staff writer for Groups Today.
Photo courtesy of fotoseeker.com.