HQ Team Reveal Innovative, Game-Changing Programs at 2016 National Conference Aboard Carnival Vista
Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (December 9, 2016) – Living up to its reputation for being an industry trailblazer, the corporate headquarters team of CruiseOne® and Dream Vacations shared the results of many enhancements that launched in 2016, and new innovations for 2017 that will drive even more profitability at the agent level.
Groups are an efficient and effective way to grow sales and a loyal customer base, and it has become an integral part of the sales growth for CruiseOne and Dream Vacations agents. Vice President of Operations Joelle Delva announced the launch of a new, one-of-a-kind Groups Concierge service whereby agents will have direct access to a team of Groups Specialists who will assist them in identifying, securing and growing group business. Available at no additional cost, this new turn-key service handles all of the complex details that go into servicing and executing a successful group, including but not limited to contract negotiation, data entry, building groups, closing sales and more. The Groups Concierge service complements additional tools that enhance group sales, such as the award-winning online Groups Registration websites, which has resulted in a 27 percent sales growth for individual franchise owners who have used this asset.
Confirming that the CruiseOne and Dream Vacations network is the most successful in the travel agent space, Vice President of Sales & Marketing Rosemarie Reed and Director of Marketing Kim Faiello discussed new initiatives that are guaranteed to produce even more revenue per agent. This includes a new structure that combines sales and marketing into one department, a promotional calendar to guide the network through the hundreds of promotions, and more sophisticated, industry-first marketing programs such as loyalty and referral programs, which will be game-changing. These new initiatives will encourage more engagement among agents to further drive sales. Reed noted that this past year’s marketing participation reached an all-time high with more than 80 percent of agents taking advantage of the marketing tools and resources provided; this is a 22 percent increase from last year.
Vice President of Information Technology Sandi Szalay shared that the ongoing multimillion dollar investment in technology has enabled all new technology tools and upgrades to be usable on all browser and devices. She emphasized the importance of working closely with a committee of agents in the network to ensure that all technology solutions are built with the common travel agent in mind — most notably, the recent release of the new Cruise Fare Watch tool. With more than 8,000 active watches, this tool creates further efficiencies for agents and has monitored more than $2 million worth of price drops since launching six weeks ago. She also provided a preview of the highly anticipated new modernized cruise booking path release which will be launched this month.
“We always keep our agents top of mind when developing new technologies and understand that to be successful selling travel, they must travel themselves with the ability to operate their business from anywhere, on any device,” remarked Szalay. “The accessibility our technology affords is among the many reasons our travel agents are the most profitable in the industry.”