Home Improvement

Joanie Ogg, NACTA President ARC statistics and industry articles would have you believe that travel agents are leaving the business in droves. Certainly, industry changes have brought about reality checks and made agents rethink their business models and refocus their efforts in more profitable areas; but

By: Joanie Ogg, NACTA President

ARC statistics and industry articles would have you believe that travel agents are leaving the business in droves. Certainly, industry changes have brought about reality checks and made agents rethink their business models and refocus their efforts in more profitable areas; but to say they are departing the industry in mass exodus is just not true.

More and more agency owners recognize that, by moving their travel businesses to home-based environments, they can control their costs and continue to successfully operate their businesses. In fact, those who have made this decision some time ago are anxious to share their success stories with us at NACTA.

The comment often made by such entrepreneurs is, “Why didn’t I do this years ago?” Book sales of our newest edition of “How to Start a Home-Based Travel Agency” have skyrocketed in the past five months. A majority of new NACTA members are tenured agents moving from brick-and-mortar environments to home bases. Agents must recognize that this is a good business move. They must share their enthusiasm and embrace the concept of working from home so that their clients continue to have confidence in their businesses. Therefore, focusing on the move as one of a positive nature for the growth of one’s business is very important. Technology and communication trends have made working from home possible in a myriad of businesses fields, not just travel.

Many agents who have moved home find that getting back to the basics making personal sales calls on clients; calling them on the phone instead of e-mailing; writing them personal notes to touch base; or better yet, being mobile agents and going to the clients to make the sales really works.

This is a perfect time to secure your existing relationships in a contact management program (if you are not already using one), and to seek out new relationships with potential customers. This is an opportune time to rekindle relationships with clients and to let them know you are a reliable and authoritative source of travel information, no matter where you are located.

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