After Brexit there’s good news, in America, interest in travel to Europe is at an all time high! MMGY Global predicts a record number of vacations and new highs in vacation spending among American travelers over the next two years. American travelers are going back to travel agents in a steadily growing pace, in fact, overall use of travel agents and desire to use them is up across the board in every generational group. More importantly, American travelers who said they used travel agents also said they were strongly influenced by them in selecting specific destinations, hotels and resorts.
The bad news is, “travel agents can’t sell your hotel if they don’t know it’s there.” says, Stephen Scott, CEO & Founder of HoteliersFriend, Sales & Marketing Solutions for Independent Hotels Worldwide, Dublin Ireland. “If you’re relying on OTAs and Direct Bookings or worse a representation company that places your hotel on a long list of comparable hotels, you’ll be missing out on serious business from North America!”
Mr. Scott who has spent more than twenty years in the industry marketing hotels to American travel professionals adds, “consumers are simply flummoxed by the sheer volume of choice out there on the Internet, plainly put, your brand needs to cut through the din. Your hotel must be placed right in front of the American travel professional. The goal must be, when travel agents think of your destination they think of your hotel. Remember, American holidaymakers stay longer, do more and spend more, so investing in the American market is well worth it!”
Stephen Scott also stresses: “travel agents recommend destinations; they build relationships of trust with their clients; they send returning business; they sell not only the room-night but the experience. Travel agents do much more than OTAs. An educated travel professional is your hotel’s best partner!”
Today’s hotelier needs to team up with the right marketing expert that will provide the connections, tools and experience necessary so the American travel professional can confidently close the deal.