Former Aito Agent chair Oliver Broad has urged his peers to ensure their workplaces are more than “a place to pick up a brochure”.
Broad, director of agency RB Collection, said he has reduced the number of brochures he is racking because those that just come in for a brochure don’t come back to book.
Speaking during a panel session at the Aito overseas conference, Broad said: “We are putting out less and less brochures on the rack. The customers that ask for a brochure do not book – they are using us a place to pick up a brochure.
“The people that book are the ones that want to engage and talk to us. We have to get out of being that place people go to get brochures.”
Broad’s comments came as guest speaker Damian Cook, of E-tourism Frontiers, claimed that requests for brochures have dropped by 90% in the past five years.
Cook said: “The European Travel Commission, in a recent study, said there had been a 90% reduction in requests for paper travel brochures in the past five years – people don’t want them.
“You need to print them and spend enormous resources putting them together and shipping them around the world – but they are obsolete the second you print them, unlike online which can be updated instantly.
Current Aito Agent chair Gemma Autrobus of Haslemere Travel said she hasn’t racked brochures for 10 years because she wants clients to come in and talk to her staff rather than take a brochure and leave.
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