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Scott and Heather Travis * Outstanding Travel Agent of the Month * September 2018

Do you know why I love doing these Outstanding Agent of the Month interviews so much?

Because I love showing the world that Travel Agents still exist and that you are still thriving and that you can still help them plan amazing travel experiences that they could never plan on their own!

And I love helping travel agents market themselves well so that we can get the word out about how much more amazing travel can be when you let a professional help you.

The more people who use travel agents, the more people will learn about travel agents, and the more this industry will thrive – and that helps all of us.

A rising tide lifts all boats.

This month I had the pleasure of interviewing TWO agents – the husband and wife team Scott and Heather Travis of Globe Getaways.

Scott and Heather run a very successful agency and are passionate about helping other travel agents become successful!

When I asked them what it was like to work together as a husband/wife team, Scott and Heather told me that they key to their success is that they are very different – so they complement each other well in their different roles.

Scott is the marketing genius behind Globe Getaways and he is a very active, and helpful member of our Travel Expert Marketing Academy. Wait until you hear about his great success with their SEO – you’ll be impressed, I know I was!

Heather is more the “face” of the company – her passion is working with their clients and planning epic trips! In our interview she talks about how she recently planned a 68 DAY, round the world trip for a couple!

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT

Heidi:

Hello! I have got Heather and Scott here from Globe Getaways. They are officially our Outstanding Agents of the Month.

So this husband and wife duo is pretty dynamic. They offer some great services and so we here in the Travel Expert Marketing Academy are really excited to feature Heather and Scott.

So Heather and Scott, thank you for being here today and congratulations on being our Outstanding Agents of the Month!

Heather and Scott:

Thank you, it’s an honor.

Heidi:

So not every couple can work together.  Can you share any tips on how you guys work so seamlessly together?

Heather and Scott:

I think it’s because we’re so different.  Well, I think that’s a good thing.  We just have different skills. We’re not doing we’re not trying to do the same things.

Heidi:

So you’re complimenting each other’s skill sets really well.

Heather and Scott:

I think it’s good also give each other some space on a day-to-day basis, but that’s important because it can be difficult working together at times.  Not every day is a good day.

Heidi:

I get that!  My husband and I work on a lot of projects together.  And I get that – there’s really good days and then there’s “ahhh” days.

Heather and Scott:

Though forgiveness goes a long way.

Heidi:

Yes! Indeed, indeed.  Do you have any fun stories to share by chance?  Of just working together?

Heather and Scott:

I just know that when Scott closes the door to his office that he really doesn’t want to be disturbed.  So, just keep away.

Heidi:

Yeah, it’s good to set up those little like I don’t know if “boundaries” is the right word but those little signs with each other.  So Heather you do most of like the front end working with the clients and then Scott you do a lot of the back end and marketing and business operations, right?

Heather and Scott:

That’s correct.

Heidi:

So Heather working with the clients – What is your favorite part of being a travel agent?

Heather and Scott:

I think it’s very interesting when I pick up the phone and somebody answers it and they have like this dream of a trip and I love helping them put it together. Everybody’s different – they have these different goals.  They have these different expectations and it’s just fun getting to know lots of different people and in helping them come up with a dream vacation.

Heidi:

Yeah, absolutely.  Do you have any favorite destinations that you just love booking?

Heather and Scott:

I love booking Europe. I think Europe is a lot of fun.  Those customized trips where they want to go here, there, and the other place, and they call me because they are overwhelmed, they don’t know how to get from here to there, they don’t know where to stay.  I think that’s a fun challenge. I like that.

Heidi:

Absolutely fun. So if you could send yourself a message back when you’re first getting started as a travel agent, what would you tell yourself?

Heather and Scott:

You know, Scott and I were talking about this and something that we struggle with at the beginning was just who to trust and who to make partners with, who to be partners with and I think there was a lot of pressure being part of networking groups to try to trust somebody who was brand new at what they were doing and sometimes it was good, and sometimes it did not serve well.  So I think that was a lesson we learned at the beginning.

Which is tough because we were a new business as well.  So we wanted to put those trust in businesses, but whether it’s an accountant or a host agency, working with established businesses was really to our advantage, and we didn’t necessarily do that in the beginning.

Heidi:

It’s a tough position to be in because you as a new business really want people to take a chance on you, but yet on the other side of that, you’re right when you’re working with other businesses that have little experience and that you just met them it cannot always go well.  So that I think is something that all businesses struggle with and can really appreciate you guys saying that.

So thank you for talking openly about that struggle because I’m sure there’s a lot of other travel agents out there in the same position.

Heather and Scott:

I’m sure there is.  I know many of them.

Heidi:

Who’s got on the back into the business you in terms of the marketing in business if you could go back and tell yourself something what would it be?

What advice would you have when you’re just getting started?

Heather and Scott:

It’s the same thing that I tell myself every day now which is focus, focus, focus. And sometimes it’s hard because I’m chasing and herding cats at times, but I have to understand that at some point you just need to focus on the daily tasks and get it done.  I know that’s something that you push in your program, but it is so hard for me and but that is really a key to success.

Heidi:

Absolutely, consistency is key.  Absolutely.  It’s an old adage that rings true and forever will.  It’s consistency is key and the really sexy fun things in our business aren’t usually the things that produce the best results. It’s the dut dut dut dut dut stuff that makes for long-term success and builds the beautiful foundation that you can then have a thriving business off of.

Heather and Scott:

And there is a lot of dut dut dut dut dut in travel.  There’s a lot of dotting I’s and crossing T’s and just getting the little stuff done. It’s constant.

 

 

Heidi:

Absolutely. Do you guys have any kind of personal mantras that you use? Something you tell yourself when you’re feeling stuck or in a rut in the business?  Anything that kind of help pulls you guys out?

Heather and Scott:

When we first started, there was a saying that I kind of took to heart it was, “Fake it til you make it” because there’s so much I didn’t know so I found that just acting intelligent and maybe not necessarily having the answers right away but getting the answers right away was really helpful and so even now I tell my contractors sometimes you just gotta fake it til you make it and don’t act like you don’t know anything, but you don’t have to volunteer answers either.

Heidi:

Yeah, now you can go back do your research.

Heather and Scott:

You don’t know what you don’t know, too. That’s important and it’s certainly not something where you want to give inaccurate information. It’s important that you get it right but it’s certainly possible to delay an answer and find the correct answer so you’re giving the client a good value.  I’ll get back to you on that. I’ll be back in an hour. I’ll find out if I don’t know.  So altogether, we really like to think that we treat other people as we want to be treated – that’s important. If we say we’re going to do something, that we do it in the time frame that we suggested that we were going to get back. And just be reliable. Those are those are important things for us.

Heidi:

That is absolutely critical. Especially in the industry that you’re in and having people’s travel in your in because it’s an important thing.  I don’t get doubted or you’re not getting you’re not following through then the clients don’t feel like they can trust you when you’re always coming through with what our say, then you build that trust and that’s why those clients feel so good coming over back to you for years and years and years and the referrals and things and why you guys have become so successful.

So fantastic. What’s been the hardest part of getting like the marketing and business side of the business for you?

What would you say it’s been just the biggest challenge?

Heather and Scott:

Yes, it’s the brain work that goes behind it is the hardest thing for me and for both of us.

We have challenges too and that we have many contractors that have different specialties, so we have different messages. And just getting the messaging right -that’s something we continue to refine.

We haven’t gotten it right the first time and we’re still not anywhere near close to being what I would say done, but it’s there. And it’s been successful and we’ve been in the business a little over three years now.  And we’ve been quite successful in that time frame.  Even though it’s not perfect, if you search in the Denver area for a travel agent, we’re at the top of the local results.  And a lot of that comes down to just doing the work even though it’s not perfect, we continue to refine it

Heidi:

Yes, that is such an important point there.  It’s progress, not perfection. If you just sit and try to get it perfect, first of all it’s really almost impossible to do that because it comes out of getting things into the world and then realizing how they work and don’t work and what works about them and what doesn’t and refining and tweaking and so really when you’re in action is when you can put things through. In our heads, we can’t necessarily think it all through. Like we have to actually get into action. So it’s a really really important point, Scott.  Thank you for sharing that.

So what has been your guys’ biggest win today or one of your biggest?  We’re in the travel agency, you look back and say wow that was like a big success that we had or a big hurdle that we jumped that were just really proud that we were able to job?

Heather and Scott:

I sent my first guy and his girlfriend around the world and it was in May? June? No March, April, and May. So he was gone 68 days, and he went to like 15 countries and all of the flights and all the hotels and all the excursions and rental cars and trains and planes.

I mean, everything was planned. And he got back, he had a great time. It was amazing that was so much fun to put together. It was really gratifying to take it from just these ideas to fruition and then I met with him afterwards and he showed me pictures and it was just a really fun celebration.

And what was that? Two months worth of travel? 68 days. And this guy was somebody who doesn’t like downtime, so whether he was hiking in Tibet, Nepal up towards the Himalayas or he was in Iceland, he was active every minute of every day so that’s like, he probably packed six months worth of normal person travel in 68 days.

Heidi:

That is awesome!  And kudos to you for pulling that off! Case and point on why travel agents are so so important. Because just the average traveler could not, the average person whether they want to go on that big of a trip or something way, way scaled back that version of that it is so many details to pull together and there’s such a huge base of knowledge that travel agents like yourselves have that the traveler just doesn’t. So the traveler’s missing out on things because they just don’t know what they don’t know.

I know for myself personally, there’s been so many times that we have gotten free upgrades or amazing tickets somewhere or different things that would have gone really awry that didn’t because the travel agent like had our back was able to foresee a situation that there’s no way we would have been able to foresee.  And on the other side of that, there are the trips that we didn’t use a travel agent that we didn’t get into a pickle. Like we were in detained in China once.

And so because we didn’t, there’s something with the visa ended up being actually a really crazy story but it was like that leg of the journey we ended up not using a travel agent for anyway. It ended up not being a good decision, but that’s what happened so yeah.  That is fantastic.

Heather and Scott:

Thank you for marketing the travel agency industry in general there.

Heidi:

Yeah, absolutely.

Heather and Scott:

It’s a good sales pitch for us.

Heidi:

All right awesome. So tell us about your next big goal.

Heather and Scott:

For me, my big goals are in automation.  We’re implementing a sales force automation system.  And just tying all the pieces parts together and working to create a seamless system or seamless as possible. That will happen in phases.

But so that we can have a better customer experience, a better agent experience, and ultimately be more efficient at what we do. And make sure that as we get bigger and bigger, it’s harder it’s getting more difficult to keep on top of every task, every client, every situation especially with all of our contractors that work with us so that’ll be the engine that helps us move forward into the future.

And then from our agent standpoint, we’re working towards getting ready for wave season coming up here and that really starts to hit us at the end of the year. Earlier than some agencies and so we need to make sure we have everybody trained and ready to go and know how to use those automation systems. So that’s on our radar.  I just want to be I want to be a good trainer for our contractors.  I want them to have a good experience and learn the business and have success in their own travel agencies and prepare them as best as I can.  I come out of teaching, so I guess it makes me happy I want them to be ready to go especially come December and January when the phone starts ringing all the time and it’s just really busy. So December, January through April really.

Heidi:

Yeah, that’s fantastic that you have a teaching background. Really perfect when you’re especially when you’re working with contractors.  So great. Thank you guys so much for sharing all of this good behind-the-scenes stuff today. So if you are a traveler and you want to get to know Scott and Heather, which I highly recommend doing, go on over to their website at GlobeGetaways.com.

Heather and Scott:

GlobeGetaways.com

Heidi:
Okay and then if you are a travel agent and you actually want to get in touch with them about potential future openings as a contractor, of course, head on over to their website. I can vouch for Scott and Heather.

Thank you guys so much.

Heather and Scott:

Thank you, it was fun!

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