Are You Preaching To The Wrong Choir!

Uncategorized Dec 12, 2017

My local newspaper, The Seattle Times, runs an immensely popular column called “Rant & Rave.”  Readers send in items such as this rant; “To the inconsiderate man at the Seahawks game who insisted on standing the entire time, my ten-year-old son wasn’t able to see any of the game thanks to you!” and this rave: “Bravo to the city bus driver who helps my elderly mother get safely cross the street.  Its people like you that restores my faith in mankind.”   It’s the little things that are big to people that make their way into this column each day.

As we approach the holidays, let’s take time to reflect and celebrate all the wonderful benefits the travel business provides us.

We are richer because of it.  Not just monetarily, travel is enriching physically, mentally, and emotionally.  We have the privilege to explore places that to most people are just a fantasy or pictures in a book. For us, it can easily become a reality for us and those we serve.

We are very fortunate to be in a business that recognizes how both our own experiences and learned education can be of tremendous benefit to our customers own travel dreams.  We are well traveled, we can save our customers money, we are there for them in times of need, often when it seems no one else cares.

Many of us in this business are good at what we do, but are failing to communicate effectively with the public the benefits of using our services.

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of reading the many articles in travel trade publications and industry-only social media groups extolling the virtues of why everyone should be using the services of a professional travel agent.

To be clear, I don’t disagree with the message - it’s the audience I have a problem with.  Why do we have to keep reminding ourselves how great we are?   Assuming we can back up the claim, shouldn’t we be telling consumers with the same ferocity that we share with each other? 

For what it’s worth, here is my two-cents.  I suggest you seek out these articles which are published in industry trade publications but are obviously addressing the consumer.  Then with the authors permission, publish or share them to your own public social media pages and groups.  Also consider including them, along with a few quotes of your own to build your credibility, as advertorials in your local marketing efforts and editorial content for local news outlets.

One recent trade article I read was titled “Ten Reasons to Use a Travel Agent in 2018.”   Ten reasons!  I bet most consumers can’t name one singe reason, but why do we have to continuously remind ourselves?

My point of this little “Rave and Rant” is simple.  We have a great message, but we are talking to the wrong people.  If the consumer can’t come up with a good reason to book with us, then it is our responsibility to educate them. 

Let’s face it, if we must constantly remind ourselves why the public should use us, well…maybe we are in the wrong business.

Dan Chappelle is a professional business advisor, sales coach, author, and speaker. His training and consulting firm helps develop sales oriented business leaders, individual salespeople, and entrepreneurs, His best-selling book, Get Your S.H.I.P. Together: The Wealthy Travel Agent Guide to Sales, is available on

For information on Dan’s Sales Acceleration programs, visit:

©2017 Dan Chappelle, CCI Inc.

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