First Class plans TV ads and top-seller sales chief

First Class plans TV ads and top-seller sales chief

First Class Holidays is shaking up the way it engages with the trade to enhance its profile under new managing director Daniel Gathercole.

The long-haul operator has also unveiled plans for its first national TV ads this summer, with a call to action to agents, who account for more than 90% of business.

In addition, it plans to appoint a celebrity ambassador.

Gathercole said all processes were under review to ensure the brand’s “personality” stood out, including ways to work with agents more proactively as it targets an aggressive 24% increase in revenue (compared with up to 9% in previous years) by the end of September 2019 to reach £25 million.

It hopes to increase awareness of First Class Holidays as more than a Canada specialist. The operator also offers Australia, New Zealand, the US, Pacific islands and countries in Asia and the United Arab Emirates, and will look at South Africa for 2019. Holidays range from tailor-made to escorted tours and self-drive breaks.

“Agents who know us think of us as Canada experts,” said Gathercole, who started in February. “We want to stand out as more professional and more clear in our messages.”

An account manager will be appointed to look after top sellers in a revamp of its key partner scheme, members of which must sell about £200,000 worth of the operator’s holidays a year.

Monthly conference calls have been introduced with agency groups while planned training events in September could be revamped to include more fun aspects.

The website is being revamped to show all its destinations and agent logins will be introduced. A new on-the-road sales executive is likely to be sought for the Midlands.

The operator’s new worldwide brochure features 13 extra tours.

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