Personal sales in a depersonalizing economy: introducing online consultative sales

Economies are continuously changing; tourism is no exception. In order to maintain a competitive position, travel agencies are required to rethink the role of sales agents within the company. With the emergence of online sales and booking platforms the physical offices and face-to-face sales changed drastically. Nowadays, consumers book their trips through online travel agents. …

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Customer Knowledge Management: the key to increased competitiveness

The tourism industry is an extremely competitive environment in which travel agencies continuously seek ways to increase their competitive advantage. Customer knowledge (CK) provides the opportunity for travel agents to gain competitive advantage, given that the new customer knowledge is produced continuously and managed effectively (Chua & Banerjee, 2013). Customer knowledge management (CKM) helps managing …

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Moments of truth: when is the right time to connect with (prospect) customers?

In today’s rapidly developing online world, customer engagement became highly important for both companies and the customer. Traditional word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing was once the most important source of information. However, due to the rapidly advancing information and communication technologies (ITC), electronic word-of-mouth (e-WOM) has now become the most widely used source of information. According to …

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The relevance of customer intimacy strategies for travel agents

Implementing the right customer engagement management strategy into ones’ organization has become increasingly important in today’s world. Peelen and Beltman (2013) discern three strategies that distinct organizations within their markets, namely operational excellence, product leadership and customer intimacy; the former ones being offensive, whereas the latter one is defensive. The customer intimacy strategy might be …

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