Signature’s new motto: “Ahead of the Curve… Behind Every Member” is backed by the numbers:
President and CEO Michelle Morgan announced, “This has been a great year for Signature agencies. The majority of our members are experiencing double-digit growth over 2010 and are showing stronger profits. Signature is tracking positive sales increases year over year, especially in the luxury segment. We are seeing all the signs that Signature members are poised for a positive 2012 and are looking for another great sales year.”
Morgan stated that since the height of the recession in late 2008, Signature’s comprehensive sales have increased 38 percent; the organization’s combined client database has increased 30 percent to 3 million travelers. Signature now includes 205 member agencies with 385 retail locations throughout the USA and Canada, with combined sales over US$5 billion. Executive Vice President Alex Sharpe added: “Success breeds success. As agency owners see the success of Signature agencies, especially in these challenging times, they see an organization where their membership truly shows rewards. Signature has the highest standards in the industry, and the results are there to see.”
Chairman of the Signature Board, Tim Smith, reiterated: “Signature is owned by its members – this is a not-for-profit company – we’re not just members, we’re investors. Our model is one that ensures we keep our members as the number one priority. The full-circle marketing plan and innovative technology products and services we provide to our front-line sales people are designed for no other reason than to create the strongest, most capable, well-armed sales force in the industry.”
Sharpe further spoke to the wide variety of suppliers, hoteliers, and other exhibitors present at the meeting. “Creating differentiated product remains a high priority for the organization. Signature has more than 2,500 cruises, and hundreds of exclusive land offers providing value added features for our members and their clients – plus, more than 20 departures with the Food Network strategic partnership in 2012.”
The 2011 Sales Meeting and Trade Show welcomed a record 2,000 attendees: more than 1,200 travel consultants – representing 98 percent of Signature’s membership – as well as over 700 supplier partners from 52 countries. Exhibitors include hotels, cruise lines, tourist offices, tour operators, airlines, and more. The event began on Thursday, November 17, and will run through Saturday, November 19, 2011.
For Signature, the Sales Meeting culminates a year of advancements. The following days will bring updates on Signature’s technology and product enhancements, as well as its ongoing commitment to professional development.