I’m not going to ask you how your business is doing now. If you are a member of the travel industry I can already guess. When I ask fellow colleagues, I get replies like “dumpster fire” and uncomfortable chuckles thrown back at me.
And I get it. Me too.
So what next?
I was watching a show the other day and the main protagonist said, “Living day to day is surviving with no regard to tomorrow.”
That really got me thinking. Before COVID were you thriving in your business, or were you just surviving?
By that I mean, did you just take whatever business came along?
Did you have a marketing strategy?
Did you know who you were marketing to?
Did you even like the trips you were planning anymore?
And (I mean let’s just get right to it) were you making any money doing it?
For so many agents, they are just surviving. They are limping along day to day with whatever generic business comes along. They are stretched thin, have no scaleable plan, work with crappy clients and 2020 has exceptionally burnt them out.
And, I hate to say it, but those are the kinds of people that are not going to survive the pandemic.
It’s the agent with a marketing plan, the agent with a long term mindset, the agent that lives for tomorrow – they are the ones that are going to make it through.
So how are you thinking about tomorrow?
How do you make a marketing plan to push through the noise and survive for the long haul?
First Step: Reset – Start with your ideal client
Know who you want to work with and how you can reach them. And don’t just focus on the demographics. Really do your research to know the psychographics. What are their pain points? What questions do they have?
Second Step: Backwards plan
Know your numbers. Know your goals. Now backwards plan on how to reach them. If you want to make $100,000 a year, you need to know things like your your expenses. Then you’ll need to know your average transaction size x how many trips you need to plan a year to get you to your goal. Once again for the people in the back: KNOW YOUR NUMBERS.
Third Step: Create a marketing strategy
No more throwing spaghetti up on the wall to see what sticks. Create a content calendar. Map out a budget and strategy. Then execute with consistency. Easy to say, hard to do. Easier if you know your ideal client and who you are talking to.
Fourth Step: Cultivate some grit
Entrepreneurship is tough. By definition it is navigating uncertainty, and this year is exceptionally hard. Now is the time for some mental exercise in resilience and grit. This is probably the toughest to learn and even tougher to master. It’s a daily practice that requires intention and grace. But if you want to make it as an entrepreneur, it’s time to get comfortable with being uncomfortable and learning how to take pause and dig in to tough moments.
It is hard to be a travel entrepreneur, but fortunately you don’t have to go it alone. Subscribe to our emails and receive weekly content for travel advisors, created by travel advisors, to help navigate this crazy industry. Looking for a community? Join our private Facebook group Travel Advisor Training and Mentorship.
Ready for the next step? Looking to lean more into your skill set and learn to cultivate the whole mind (marketing), body (business operations), soul (mindset and grit) of a travel advisor? Check out our new KTA Membership launching in October! Join the waitlist and be the first to learn when membership opens up!
Krystal Eicher is the Founder of KTA, and the Owner of Serendipitous Traveler, the self proclaimed Girlfriend Getaway Guru, and the marketing strategist for Kinship Vacations. Krystal coaches other agents on finding their ideal client, setting up their content calendars, and actually having a marketing strategy in their travel business versus taking random business by default. She is a yogi (that should do more yoga), coffee addict, and travel junkie. She lives in North Houston with her hubby and two daughters.