Recommend May 2014 - (Page 14)
HELPING AGENTS TAP INTO
THE MILLENNIAL MARKET
Contiki offers millennials
tours around the globe,
including to Australia.
deserae del campo
It's the travel agents vs. social media when it comes to how
millennials plan their vacations.
Today, a travel consultant is up against the likes of Facebook,
Twitter, Instagram and YouTube-all used religiously by millennials
because it's where the trends live; where they get their news; where
they share pictures with friends; and where images and posts are
elevated to a level of grand importance by a simple "like" tab.
But have no fear agents, for Contiki Vacations targets the
younger demographic, those between the ages of 18 and 35 years
old-and has been for the past 50 years. What started out as a tour
operator selling solely camping trips to young travelers has now
grown into a full-ﬂedged tour company leading travelers into Latin
America, Europe, Asia, Australia, New Zealand and North America.
"Travel agents have a great opportunity to let the 18-35 market
know how valuable and priceless their expertise can be," says
Ashley Woodring, national sales manager for Contiki. "With staff
members that are in the 18-35 demographic, Contiki gives agents
tools to be able to promote our product using social media and
keeping them in the know with the latest trends that matter to the
millennial market. We also work with agents that are interested in
local marketing opportunities to actually meet and talk to the
Contiki's website resembles a social media site: the design,
layout, its Join the Conversation section with dozens of links to
Facebook, Twitter and YouTube conversations, videos and posts-
all centered around travel news and what's trending online. "It is
important to know and understand what our client's needs are, so
we can make sure the Contiki message and product is clear...we
are in touch with the consumer trends and habits of the young
millennial market," points out Woodring.
In April 2012, Contiki launched MeetUp, a mobile version of its
website, that allows travelers to chat together before they embark
on their Contiki trip, as well as while on the road. "Our travelers feel
connected with others when they engage with MeetUp," says Rita
Kelly, Contiki's marketing director.
In addition to that, last year, Contiki launched its Shout app,
which features a group timeline option that allows travelers to
"tell their travel story while on their trip by creating an exclusive tour
timeline for each individual departure," says Kelly. The timeline is
accentuated with photos, videos, and comments, and is also
customizable with the traveler's speciﬁc tour itinerary such as
weather updates, city maps, and destination information.
14 may 2014
every agent counts
And with its new travel agent incentive program, Every Agent
Counts, Contiki is telling travel agents that they are truly an
important part of Contiki's bookings.
"The idea of Every Agent Counts is to let agents know we
appreciate and support each and every booking they create," says
Woodring. "It is important to Contiki to have a team out on the
road to support trade sales efforts and then reward the agents'
returned support-reiterating that every agent counts. Every agent
registered for the program could earn $50 for every passenger
they booked in a designated time period."
This past year, the brand updated its agent-speciﬁc website
(contiki.com/agents) offering travel agents access to ﬂyers and
sales training, as well as tips to help agents snag Contiki's young
clientele. In addition, Contiki expanded its sales team, now known
as "Contiki Regional Sales Executives," focused on handling the
needs of travel agents nationwide. "Our regional sales team can
also provide social media training and information about how to
access the youth market in their area," says Woodring.
This past year, Contiki expanded its Latin America product to
include Costa Rica and Ecuador with the Galapagos. For Europe,
Contiki added a new style of traveling via sailboats in western
Greece, which was modeled after Contiki's popular 8-day
Turkish Sailing itinerary. "The trips are for smaller groups and a
great adventure off the beaten path. We have also launched our
latest conservation project as part of Contiki Cares-working with
The Sea Turtle Conservancy in Costa Rica," adds Woodring.
But the brand's No. 1 seller year after year is the 13-day
European Discovery. The reason, says Woodring, "is that it offers
what I like to call our sampler of Europe-you get to see the
blockbusters like Paris' Eiffel Tower and Rome's Colosseum, and
the backstreets of Europe, all ﬁtting into a perfect 13-day trip.
The other hot sellers this year include Asian Adventure-for the
adventure and culture enthusiasts-Simply Italy, Spanish Spree,
and Greek Island Hopping." ●
Contiki Vacations: (866) 266-8454; contiki.com, contiki.com/agents
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recommend May 2014
Hotel Desk: Le Meridien
Tour Talk: Contiki Vacations
Tee Off in Spain
Tee Off in Scotland
Jerusalem & Tel Aviv: A (Short) Tale of Two Cities
AmaWaterways Sails into Myanmar
American Cruise Lines is on a Roll
Venturing Through Bordeaux With Viking
Martinique Travel Planner
Ecuador Goes Luxe
Mexico Destination Weddings & Honeymoons
Salamander Resort & Spa, Virginia
PGA National Resort & Spa, Florida
Recommend May 2014