When running a tour business it always crucial to grow your partner network, increase your client base, increase sales, and promote your tours and activities. In this blog post, we’re going to go over the five partnership ideas to grow your tour business.
Namely, partnering up means a chance to meet and work with other people within the tourism industry, or even from your niche. Making new acquaintances means growing your business network. It also means both sides get a chance to, hopefully, learn something new and exchange ideas, experience, and knowledge.
New tour companies, travel agencies, and tour guide businesses are emerging at a rapid pace. In that sea of startups, it’s important to use partnerships with other businesses in your field to your advantage. And that can work magic—building trust and gathering references.
When you’re running a successful tour business and you have returning, satisfied clients, word travels fast. That word of the mouth also works when two similar businesses partner up and refer clients to one another because they’re earned the client’s trust. And your partners will do the same for you.
Here are some suggestions and ideas who should you partner with, what are the benefits of such investments, and more.
Let’s say you offer various two-day city tours. It’s in your best interest to sell more tours and for your clients to have a nice place to stay.
Surely you will sell more tours if your potential clients can book your tour as well as accommodation, all at once from your website. You can offer it like a special package. That way, tourists don’t have to worry about where to stay or about your tour being a two-day experience. It’s a win-win situation since even the hotel makes a profit.
Of course, you could always make some sort of a deal with the hotel or hostel (depends on your preferences and their cooperation) and offer a special price or a discount if tourists book the accommodation through your website. Also, you could arrange with the reception at the hotel for them to offer your tours and activities to their guests. It this case, the hotel/hostel acts as a reseller.
There are so many opportunities to build a business together or at least, collaborate on different levels through various business proposals. You just have to get in touch with the people in charge and come up with a business plan that benefits both sides.
Expand your network and your opportunities. Nurture those partnerships.
There are many travel bloggers whose popularity, great writing skills and audience you could use to promote your tour business. Establishing a short-term partnership with a travel blogger can boost your marketing efforts.
More and more people are going online to read up on different reviews. Then they decide which tour to book, where to travel, which sites to visit, and so on.
Also, people don’t really have the time to dig what their next destination or activity is going to be. Tourists prefer recommendations and a famous travel blogger with a large following could help promote your destination, activity, or travel company.
Now, imagine a travel blogger posting an amazing blog with his/her experience regarding your tour.
In the blog, the travel blogger includes stunning photos which paint a picture for any travel-lover sitting behind his/her desk. It motivates people to reach out and book the same activity.
A skillful travel blogger can increase your brand awareness and spread a few good words about how awesome tours and activities your tour business offers. And not just that, if you really run a quality business, it will be recognized and good reviews will come pouring in.
Don’t forget to share that blog post on your social media as well.
How to find notable travel bloggers who will be interested in partnering with you?
Do your research. Find out what your audience likes.
Browse the Internet, search through Instagram, go on different forums, for example, Reddit, ask around, and check out the most popular travel bloggers and their websites. Then offer something in return.
Whether it’s a free tour, a discount, or you offer to pay for the content – be sure to get to know the travel blogger you are going to be working with, and that you arrange all the details beforehand.
Finding an influencer is very similar to finding a travel blogger, however, your influencer can be a chef for example like the late Anthony Bourdain. Or a journalist, a travel enthusiast, media personality, a YouTuber, photographer, etc.
For example, if you team up with a well-known local photographer, you get breath-taking photos in return.
Successful influencers get a lot of media attention and they could use this to say a few good things about your tour business.
Destination marketing organizations (DMOs) are always looking for additional partnerships and ways to cooperate in order to spread the word about their destination.
Their main goal is to raise awareness about a certain travel destination and your goal is to expand your client base. If you can convince DMOs to offer your tour services to tourists who pop in their offices or visit their website, then, you, my friend, have the work cut out for you.
For starters, go join your local DMO and see what you can offer them. Negotiate. Try to find the best deal that will benefit you both. Let’s be honest, DMOs can increase your sales without you having to do much work. However, have in mind that doing business with DMOs is a long-term strategy. It takes time for you to see the results.
What a better way to find mutual ground with, for instance, local restaurants or wineries, then to partner with them? If you run a food tour, that’s an amazing idea!
See what’s nearby. Research what kind of tours you can create, whether it’s wine tours, beer tours or various food tours. Then contact nearby wineries. Make a proposal. Tell them you plan on organizing a tour and that you’re interested in taking the group to their winery.
Here’s an idea:
Choose whether you’re going to visit one winery or include a few in your tour.
Tourists love to visit new destinations, of course. And while they are there, what they want the most is to try different local dishes and beverages.
There is, of course, one other type of partnership which I saved for the end of this article.
You should be confident in your business strategy when running your tour business and own up to the task to form a partnership with other tour operators. If nothing else, to enhance your services, find new ideas, and level up. Find new ways to form long-lasting partnerships.
Virtual reality and augmented reality are becoming increasingly popular in the travel industry. Have you considered partnering up with a gadget-related company?
It’s always important to be sure that any business you partner up with fits in with your brand.
So we’ve mentioned you will increase your income if you partner up with other businesses.
But, you know what can get you more online bookings instantly? Orioly!
Orioly is a SaaS booking and distribution software built for tour operators, activity providers, and small travel agencies.
Our online booking solution takes away the headache of having to deal with administrative tasks all day long. It allows you to focus on priorities—efficient sales.
Orioly comes with a fully-featured 30-day free trial.
on June 12, 2018
by Sara Tilly
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