The TravellingMan Consultancy

Business Advisory · Branding & Marketing · Product Development · Opening New Markets · Research · Representation · Keynote Speaking · Travel Video Production · Non-Exec Directorships · Communication · Customer Service · Blogging

We provide full spectrum Business Advisory and Interim Management solutions to tour operators, wholesalers, agents and tourism organisations in North America, Australasia, Europe, Asia and elsewhere around the world.

The TravellingMan Consultancy is an Associate Member of USTOA (United States Tour Operators Association). 

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Change & Growth

The international travel and leisure industry is experiencing a period of unprecedented change and growth. Consumer spend has grown enormously, but organisations within the industry are faced with increasingly complex issues in delivering product development, expansion to new markets, operational delivery, branding, digital innovation, sustainable growth and profitability.

These major shifts call for confident responses by quick-thinking leaders – people who can respond to opportunities and effectively lead their teams through change, intuitively and analytically understand the evolving consumer. The seed to stimulate necessary change can be hard to pinpoint however. A consultancy can assist when stakeholders are too close to the day-to-day operation to recognise what’s needed to make a transformation; other times they may simply need to lock into specific experience, connections and knowledge.

Challenges

robot-507811_1920 informationGuest expectations have changed and are evolving. The rise of the millennial traveller and the use of mobile devices and apps are forcing companies to think again about how to attract and keep customers. Information technology has influenced everything and the phenomenon is growing across generations, not just the young. Distribution has also changed. People are thinking differently and acting differently. Travellers trust peer-to-peer and expect much more open interaction from businesses. They demand far higher levels of service and businesses are under intense pressure to surpass expectations in order to maintain customer loyalty.

Wholesalers and tour operators understand that customers are savvy and can connect directly whenever they wish. They need to find new reasons for prospects to book with them rather than directly with a supplier. They must innovate product, open new markets and engage customers in a more personalised way. They will have to rethink their branding and marketing to project their purpose and convey their messages though engaging imagery, compelling stories, backed up by rational differentials.

Travel agents need to drive strong messaging around personalised local service, time-saving, expert knowledge, packaged-up booking simplicity and after-sale support. They must stimulate demand and boost their proposition through well planned and highly targeted initiatives, promotions and campaigns. They can’t sit around and wait for people to walk through their door. They need to work to become a valued asset to their local communities, have an active social presence, create uniquely packaged products and leverage relationships with suppliers and wholesalers at all levels.

Suppliers such as hotels, venues, coach operators, car rental or activities face increasing competition from similar businesses as online distribution increasingly allows everyone a voice and access to customers. They must be relevant to those customers interested in more complex, multiple booking arrangements, while working through the difficulties and costs associated with direct-handling and customer support. They need to better understand and market the points of differentiation in their proposition. They should maximise cooperatives, be true destination specialists, and connect with like-minded smaller partners to create unique products.

Opportunities

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Structure. An organisational structure review across a business, or in specific departments, will be a vital exercise in reshaping and optimising an organisation. The goals in a consultancy project are often one or several of the following: to increase productivity and performance, eliminate dysfunction, clarify thinking, improve coordination, simplify processes and speed up decision-making.

We will help you review the structure, using our experience to challenge the conventional, so you can motivate and inspire employees at all levels. People are your strongest asset and your profitability will soar when they, as stakeholders, feel valued, engaged and empowered to work to results based targets with customer service and product delivery at front of mind.

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Branding and design.  Whether you need a big consulting project, or a one-off job, building an incredible strategy means little if you’ve no creative ideas. Equally, there is no point getting carried away creatively with ideas if there is no budget to support them. Our team applies this attitude to every job: big or small, straightforward or complex, profitable or charitable.

Business has no limits if you have the flair and imagination of true creative thinkers. We’ll show how creative services deliver greater returns when they are thought out and implemented by business heads. Only when you ‘WOW’ your audience will you ‘WIN’ them. And, only when you ‘KNOW’ your audience can you ‘WOW’ them. Our approach is to add analytics, strategy, planning and creativity to every part of the digital+Print adventure.

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Product. Wholesalers have often acted as informal marketing partners for destination based travel organisations, rather than manufacturing their own content. It’s
a low risk reactive way to build a business but it can sometimes be based on luck and contacts not facts and judgement.

We’ll assist your focus on new product areas and work with you on the data and information that’s vital when putting together a new packaged holiday product that will sell. We’ll look at how you can make products your customers want, not just ones your partners want to push, and consider if new products can fit into existing business models, repackaging what you have.

Major tour operators are investing more and more into developing products for their customers. They are looking for further engaging activities and local authenticity but often their legacy contracting teams, operations structures and IT systems make it very hard to adapt.

We can work though these hurdles, advising on implementation or setting up local operations to provide and curate the products that work best for both customers and the principle. And we’ll consider how to market your key unique selling points, and create further if needed, it’s always achievable.

globe-1339833_1920.pngNew markets. Using our global experience and connections, we’ll work with you to explore new markets and show you how to be a more effective ‘local’ player as you expand your operation into regions or areas you believe have potential for growth. Expanding into emerging markets requires increased cultural dexterity when negotiating with partners or authorities and your workforce needs to be culturally fluent with excellent communication skills. We’ll help you plan sales strategy, advise on distribution, introduce you local contacts, adapt product positioning to local consumer needs and aspirations, and implement marketing campaigns appropriately.

Travel videography and photography. Captivating stories, told through amazing videography and outstanding imagery, will bring your product to life and transform the way your customers think about you and your business. But travel is a highly specialised area, so to get the right result every time it requires movie-makers and photographers to have a deep understanding of the industry and traveller aspirations.

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We’ll lock into your knowledge and expertise to conceptualise the project, then our producer will submit plans for discussion and approval of content, duration, scripts, destinations, budgets and outcome.  Once the project is agreed, we’ll manage the whole shoot: dealing with permissions, permits, regulations, guest waivers, model agencies, actors and all the other complications out there in the world of real people and selling vacations.

We’ve been involved in hundreds of commercial travel shoots across the world and have wide experience in delivering the most effective, dynamic productions, big or small. Whatever you need, from a re-edit of previous shoots to a major production, we’ll provide the finished job to your agreed brief and to the budgets and deadlines you specify.

Video content will account for 69% of all consumer internet traffic by the end of this year, so there’s no getting around it, marketers must create new video content if they want to broaden their reach and connect with audiences across platforms — blogs, YouTube, social media, and search engines. In addition to great ‘in the field’ travel videography, here are our top ten suggestions for additional Pre-Recorded video solutions:

  1. Short ‘thank you’ videos from your team to new customers or customers.
  2. 15-second or extended video testimonials from real customers and evangelists.
  3. Product launches, demos or training sessions for B2B partners.
  4. Short introductions of the company, its purpose, mission, and vision.
  5. Turn blog posts into short, how-to videos and summaries.
  6. Shoot live presentations performed by company members and add in their slides in post-production.
  7. Create videos for each of your calls-to-action or USPs
  8. Use Facebook Live or Twitter to broadcast from cool industry events you, your manager, or your CEO are attending.
  9. Film interviews with key members of the company or hold a live Q&A / Ask Me Anything session with employees or visitors.
  10. Live stream or record  conversations with a thought leaders or influencers who are relevant to your audience.

See also: On Video/Audio

vintage-1705063_1920Communications. As communications advisors, The TravellingMan Consultancy has extensive associations with talented writers, bloggers, journalists, online influencers and travel media. We’ll help you strengthen and maintain the public image of your organisation, providing additional support for functioning departments or working with you to develop completely new resources. We can assist you in planning strategic communication and proactive media relations initiatives, as well as working to develop your online social media and blogging presence.

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Your Business Purpose. As humans we all want to understand our purpose. It’s the definition of why we are here; our reason for getting up in the morning. It’s the essential constituent for a business too. Your purpose will be bigger than any individual and will connect your own people with your customers and prospects. It’s the organisation’s raison d’être beyond targets and profits, yet it will lead to exceptional performance, happier employees and greater profit. We’ll help you workshop with you and your people to define your business purpose. It will inspire your teams, engage your customers and transform your business.


The Consultancy

John profile pictureTravellingMan is led by John Boulding, an innovative and strategic senior executive with nearly 30 years’ experience as a CEO in the travel industry. He has held multiple additional directorships in specialist and global travel organisations. John has worked in youth, first-class and luxury escorted touring; inclusive resorts; specialist and mass-market FIT; and inbound DMC.

John and his associates are all experienced travel industry professionals. The team includes branding experts, marketers, product developers, media professionals, writers, video creatives, photographers and industry trainers all with wide experience across B2B and B2C environments.

TravellingMan is based in Switzerland but operates worldwide. It has extensive commercial and distribution relationships and media connections in UK, Europe, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, SE Asia, India and China.

plain icon bEmail: info@travellingman.org
Email: john@travellingman.org
Tel Switzerland: +41 79 192 53 06
Tel United Kingdom: +44 20 3239 6891
Tel United States: +1 315 636-0993

To print our PDF brochure, please click here:  The Consultancy

Note: The TravellingMan Consultancy is an Associate Member of the United States Tour Operators Association. However, The TravellingMan Consultancy is NOT a participant in the USTOA $1 Million Travelers’ Assistance Program and is not held by USTOA to certain other standards required of Active Members. 

Pic credits: JB, Pixabay