by Stephen Ekstrom | President & Founder of Fire Starter Brands LLC
For years, travel industry suppliers and destination marketing organizations have joined travel industry associations to connect with more tour operators.
There are few things as disappointing as parting with your limited marketing dollars to pay for a trade show, advertising campaign, sponsorship or marketing program only to learn that a large portion of the recipients of your message are completely unable to utilize your product or service.
Our clients are the destinations, hotels, restaurants, attractions & experience providers that cater to groups, F.I.T. travelers and the professional travel companies that put together those types of itineraries.
We spend roughly 400-600 hours each year to re-qualify each of the operators in our network. We set about to see which associations or outside marketing activities would bring our clients the biggest bang for their buck and the results were surprising.
We ask one critical question...
How many of the members actually book tours?
When we remove those companies that are not in a position to influence travel decisions for large numbers of group or F.I.T. visitors, those that focus only on certain limited destinations and those who may own motor coaches but do not plan tours, we're left with some interesting results.
Fire Starter Brands' network has more than 2x the number of pre qualified tour operators of any major travel association.
At Fire Starter Brands, we take a big picture approach to building our network. Our proprietary database includes operators that are members of each of those travel associations and those who are operating in the high-volume marketplace but may not be affiliated. To better serve our clients - destinations and industry suppliers - we've qualified our network to know what types of business each operator conducts and their unique interests.
Fire Starter Brands offers solutions that build brand awareness, deliver strong calls to action, draw attention to your special announcements, help you strengthen your relationships with key buyers through face-to-face interactions and build better product that high-volume travel planners want.