Amanda Stevens – known as The Consumer Futurist – told delegates at the Brisbane event that the blending of business and personal lives provided exciting opportunities for the travel industry.
Stevens says people are rethinking what life is about and travel is a part of that. To take advantage of this, agents should be curious about their clients and discover more about their future plans and desires.
‘You shouldn’t be just talking about their next trip, change the conversations to be part of setting the long-term goals of you customer.
‘For example if they are going to an island this year, are there other islands they want to visit in the future?
‘You need to open the door for your customers before they open the door themselves – it’s time to go deeper with clients, be curious about their plans and ask more questions.
‘You want people to feel safe about entrusting not only themselves but also their friends’ and families’ travel plans with you. And you’ll achieve that by listening to them.’
Stevens says a trend towards shopping locally, accelerated by Covid, can also work in agents’ favour. ‘The consumer support for small businesses has grown, people want them to survive. So what are you doing to be more visible and active in your community?’
Stevens adds that despite cost of living pressures, many people are prepared to pay more for a quality product. ‘They are looking for a meaningful experience.’
(See earlier coverage of the FCTG NZ Independent conference HERE.)