Scaling a business can be particularly difficult, especially for the less experienced. Perhaps your travel agency is finally ready to grow and your travel business is taking off. But how do you scale a travel agency? Travel agents oftentimes have trouble with this part of the process as it goes beyond marketing, agent-customer relationships, traveling, and all the business practices they know and goes into areas not yet trod such as business development and management. So what are some of the top tips for successfully scaling your business into an empire?
Set aside dedicated space
This is especially true if you are a travel agent working from home, or if you work in other shared spaces, then this one is an absolute must. The fact is it’s incredibly difficult to maintain a professional level of order if you are living in chaos. If you are a travel agent who works from home then having a specific room that is used only as your personal office to manage your files, keep your records, and overall create an atmosphere of professionalism is an essential step in successfully scaling your business.
Having a set aside dedicated space is important because it allows you to have places to keep files and customer information, and your growing need for enhanced technology is safe and secure in a dedicated room. You may ultimately choose to even have, and you really should have, dedicated computers or servers specific to your business tasks. Splitting your personal from your professional is an important step in scalability. Your goal is to scale a travel agency and so the first step is by scaling it where you are.
Make time to improve efficiency
All businesses, especially in the early years, have three options when it comes to scaling and all three must be used in tandem. The first is that you simply do the work yourself, the second is that you delegate it to others, and the third is improved automation. Doing a task yourself may not seem like the proper way of scaling but there is always a way to improve the way you are doing your work. Many experts in the travel industry agree that there are certain tasks that a travel agent simply must handle themselves.
No matter how big or small your travel business is, there will always be tasks that only you as the boss can do. One of these things is identifying and implementing better travel technologies to assist you in day-to-day operations. A simple method of enhancing your own capabilities using travel automation would be something as simple as a spreadsheet assistant helping you to fill out spreadsheets better. This may sound very rudimentary but the fact is there are many automated systems that can help in the day-to-day tasks and decisions that the boss of a growing travel business needs to successfully scale the travel agency.
Delegation is the second pillar of scalability. Your travel business needs to learn how to successfully delegate certain tasks to other individuals or your travel agency will never successfully scale to the big time. This is because no matter how much travel automation you have or how skilled you become at conducting your own tasks, eventually there will be too much either for you or the software to handle at which point you will need more manpower.
Delegation can take multiple forms from finding individuals to whom to delegate specific short-term tasks like temporarily hiring an assistant to assist you in sorting paperwork, making copies, or helping you run a brief social media campaign, to more long-term individuals who take on full administrative work, become your travel agents, or assist your travel agency or travel business in more fundamental ways.
One of the most important things to remember as you bring these individuals on is to ensure that they have the tools to complete their tasks. Travel automation and other travel technologies exist not just to help improve your overall efficiency as the boss but getting good high-quality travel automation tools can also help your delegation significantly as your travel agents or admins will now have significantly improved efficiency themselves and are better poised to help you scale your travel agency.
Now we come to the heart of the matter. The other three really talked about the human component and alluded to the importance of automation but the fact is of all the ideas and concepts mentioned here for scalability, none is more important than technology. Travel automation can replace hundreds of man-hours. It is possible to run social media and marketing campaigns almost totally automated with minimal human input allowing you to focus on winning those customers who have bought into your online campaigns.
But there are other types of travel automation that are essential to any successful travel agency and those include things like TTS Webook Suite and Travelport Mobile Agent. If you have nothing else, then these are the big two.
TTS Webook Suite allows your clients to have a 24/7 platform to make their online bookings through your own professional travel agency website. This allows you to be able to safely and conveniently book clients as well as simultaneously gather important travel industry data about where your clients like to go and the kind of trip they want to go on. This information can then easily be used to sell subsequent trips in the future.
This works beautifully in conjunction with Travelport Mobile Agent. Travelport Mobile Agent gives you incredible unprecedented access to your GDS through your mobile devices (smartphones and tablets from Apple, Android, or Windows) in all parts of the travel industry and allows you 24/7 access to meet customer needs, issue tickets, or allow clients to reach you simply and conveniently. Your client’s life, plans, and trips can change but with Travelport Mobile Agent, you are easily and conveniently able to meet these changes head-on and assist your clients in making their trips a success.
Of all the scalability features mentioned, nothing will scale your business more than happy customers who come back for more trips and customers who tell friends and family that you are the travel agent to have. Using enhanced automation techniques like Travelport Mobile Agent or TTS Webook Suite as well as learning to delegate tasks to assist your business as it grows and setting aside a specific place for your business to grow are all essential elements of continued success for your travel business. Let travel automation technology and others help you achieve your goal of scaling your business and with each satisfied customer, your dream becomes that much closer.
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