Since Laurie could remember, she always wanted to be a teacher. She studied at the University of Calgary to become a teacher, then taught grade 1 and 2 in Sosua, Dominican Republic where she eventually created the school's art program, then taught art from pre-kindergardeners to grade 12. It was an awarding experience to use her creative spirit and enthusiastic energy to captivate her classes of all ages, languages, races, and cultures. This early development of teaching laid the foundation of her public speaking role where she now speaks on her passion and expertise in the areas of travel marketing, social media, entrepreneurialism, and the honeymoon and destination wedding markets.
SOCIAL MEDIA - We've all heard the buzz words of pintrest, facebook, twitter, youtube and instagram but have you heard of snapchat, weddingwire, adroll, trippy, and travbuddy? Are you getting the most out of your organic searches through google+ and blogger? Are you posting your reviews on tripadvisor? Are you uploading regular micro-videos to all of your social media platforms? Are you playing an interactive role with your supplier's Social Media and their followers?
ONLINE REVIEW SITES: HATE THEM OR LOVE THEM? - There's no greater feeling than a knife through the heart when you've worked your butt off for a customer only for them to turn around and write a negative review about you or your business! It takes a lot of self-control and restraint to hold back your initial emotions and reactions to hating on them too all over the internet. Learn the skills and tools to turn things around.
TRAVEL MARKETING - With the new Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation that came into affect on July 1st, 2014 and it's threats of hefty fines, it's no wonder travel providers are scrambling to comply and qualify their data-base. But what are the rights of the marketer? Can you still email your data-base? How can you continue to get more leads? How does the anti-spam law affect consumers?
DESTINATION WEDDING SPECIALISTS - To Plan or Not To Plan? That is the question. As every travel agent jumps on the lucrative destination wedding band wagon, one asks how involved should the travel counselor be in the planning and coordinating of the wedding?
OFF-PROPERTY WEDDINGS - As the popularity of destination weddings continue to rise, bride and grooms who were originally attracted to the destination wedding because it was unique, are now finding themselves amongst the crowd. The resorts too are quadrupling their wedding departments and extending their maximum one wedding per day to five weddings per day. For the bride and groom who still want to get away but want the uniquness of a wedding that nobody else has, we look at the exciting and unique opportunities to wed off-property from the resort.
WHY DO BRIDES CRY? - We review the inner psychology of a bride and the demand she has for perfection and service no matter the budget.
DROP DEAD HONEYMOON LOCATIONS - It's a tough job but somebody's gotta do it. Laurie has had the opportunity, through her business at Romantic Planet Vacations, to explore the world in pursuit of finding only the top most romantic and exclusive resorts and destinations in the world. These locales will blow you away.
"OWN" YOUR BUSINESS - Many owner-run travel agencies have the same problem, they let the operations, travel and customer service side of the business over-run them while they forget about bottom-line and growth opportunities. How in-tune are you to the industry standards expense ratio for travel agencies in Canada? Are you spending too much on your marketing? On your staff? On your admin? Do you create budgets every year? Do you follow them? We take a hard look on what we need to succeed, and enjoy it while we can.
DO YOU HAVE TRAVEL AGENTS OR SALES AGENTS? - When is the last time you viewed your travel agency as a sales-driven business? Do you have a handle on your closing ratios per agent? When was the last time your sales agents were trained in selling? Have you practiced role-playing in over-coming objectives? Are your agents versed in not taking 'no' for an answer. When is the last time your agents did any cold-calling? We get back to the basics that are guaranteed you to increase your sales by 20%.