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p34-35 Letters mar6 3/3/09 17:21 Page 34
Your letters
‘Weapons for the web’ also
help build a relationship
I was interested to read the feature by Olivia
Hemmings about social media networking
(TTG February 20).
Abta’s challengers
I regularly blog, have a Facebook group for
my business, and I am partial to “tweeting”
on Twitter.
But something came up for me following the
publication of Olivia’s article which really
pose serious threat
showed how useful such forms of online social
media can be in developing relationships with
customers. YOUR EDITORIAL about taking the given the option of a conventional
A couple recently booked a holiday in “pretenders to the Abta throne” LET bond, or a “bond insurance” fee
Marrakech with me. They are there in Morocco seriously was absolutely right
OF THE
TER
based upon a flat percentage of
at the moment, and emailed me to suggest (TTG February 27). turnover, and payable quarterly.
I followed their “holiday updates” on Twitter! About 25 years ago, when IBM
WEEK
It is not in the industry’s interest
So pleased are they with their holiday that ruled the computer world, they too to lose the Abta voice in representing
they have asked me, their travel agent, to be thought they could ignore small “up- the trade to government, but in the cur-
involved with it while they are away! And start” companies, and therefore ignored a rent economic climate the retailer has to de-
Twitter, as unobtrusive as it is, provides them certain Bill Gates – I wonder whatever hap- mand more.
with the perfect means of keeping people back pened to his new Microsoft company? Undoubtedly, the winning “pretender” will
home in touch with what they are doing. Clearly, any membership organisation must be the one who provides cheaper bonding, has
Agents should not necessarily see using consider itself in exactly the same competitive a fair trade charter to prevent operators from
online social media as methods to sell, but environment as the rest of us, which means competing directly with their appointed
as ways of building and strengthening the they must deliver best service and benefits, at agents and, most importantly, will sell to the
relationships with their clients, as well as the cheapest price. public the benefits of using a travel agent.
ways to increase brand awareness. It follows, therefore, that anyone offering Finally, before you try to “blow your
With so many of these modes of connectivity bonding at a cheaper price will have members competitor out of the water”, ensure your
being free, it makes sense to use them. beating a path to their door, and with the own ship has not previously been holed
urgent need of all companies to cut costs, now below the waterline by the said competitor!
Andrea Wren is the time to act.
manager and owner, Ideally, retailers need a simple clear cut Martin Wellings.
Wren Elite Travel bonding criteria (such as Iata’s), and then be director, PST Corporate, and ex-Abta president
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