“Fire Starter Brands provides an incredible resource to the travel industry. They know what sells, how to market it and all the right people to market too. We appreciate the work they've done for us.”
Liz Bittner, President & CEO, Travel South USA
“Stephen has been a long-time supporter of the American Bus Association. His exceptional networking abilities and industry connections have earned great exposure for the various attractions, museums, restaurants and other companies he has represented. He is a trusted volunteer and one of the most creative marketing minds we know, having successfully pulled off a fascinating restroom sponsorship for Ripley’s Believe It or Not! and numerous other activities that made sure his products got noticed. I’m happy to have worked with Stephen and look forward to seeing him for years to come at the ABA Marketplace and at many other industry events."
Pete, President & CEO, American Bus Association
“Stephen built Ripley’s group and trade sales division from the ground up, creating an extremely successful department that is an essential part of our overall business.”
Michael, Ripley’s Believe It or Not!
“My deepest gratitude for providing Ripley’s Times Square excellence and unmatched business leads this year. Cheers to another year of awesome collaboration!”
Jonathan, Ripley's Believe It or Not!
“We have participated in Fire Starter Brands sales missions and co-op mailings. Both generated tour and corporate groups for the American Museum of Natural History.”
Beth, American Museum of Natural History
“With the help of Stephen and Fire Starter Brands, I have been able to connect (and contract) with key buyers that I have had difficulty establishing my own relationship with in the past. They have a proven track record in the tourism/hospitality industry and as a well established connector between buyers and sellers. I would highly recommend their services.”
Renee, The Ride
"We've seen results!"
Eva Price, Maximum Entertainment Partners and Five Time Tony Award® Nominated Producer
"We’re grateful for Fire Starter Brands and their expertise. They’ve helped us develop successful new programs and connect with the tour operators that have already started bringing us new business."
Margaret, Gilmore Entertainment / The Carolina Opry
“Fire Starter Brands knows marketing and group sales better than anyone I know. They create partnerships that not only benefit his own company, but help with messaging of the partner companies involved.”
Ian, Serino Coine / Art Meets Commerce
"I am excited to work with Fire Starter Brands each year. They are uniquely able to use their relationships with product managers to help me land business and build stronger relationships with those accounts. Every program I have joined with Fire Starter Brands has generated important leads, sparked new rate requests and valuable new bookings for me."
Lora, Embassy Suites / Homewood Suites / Hampton Inn
"Fire Starter Brands is the real deal. Their great team continues to help me connect with the right buyer contacts throughout North America and the Fire Starter Brands programs have helped me land new accounts, build rapport with decision makers and ensure that my marketing material is in the hands and minds of the right people, every time. Thank you for what you do."
Nicole, Fairfield Inn & Suites
"Thank you for presenting at the New Bedford Tourism Summit, very informative and the attendees enjoyed your presentation especially your consultations during the round tables."
Dagny, Destination New Bedford
“The Fire Starter Brands’ sales mission was great! Seeing a tour operator at a trade show and being able to say, ‘I was just in your office with Fire Starter Brands,’ really opened new doors for me.”
Marceline, Experience Columbus
"I thank you for the fantastic experience of connecting with operators at their offices, who otherwise would probably not have gotten to hear firsthand about Baton Rouge. Also, the experience of connecting with other tourism sales managers was equally as fulfilling. I learned so much from both groups that I can bring back to my office. I’m still flying high and telling everyone who asks how productive and informative it was for us!"
Tracy, Visit Baton Rouge
“I found our day very productive and was conducive for us all to learn about our partner’s destinations. I felt the process successfully brought together many folks who may have not known each other nor their tourism assets, but later became friends by the end of the session. That’s a win win for all! I’ll be glad to recommend a professional as thorough and comforting as you...”
Carol, Virginia Tourism Corporation
"I have had much success & ROI from our participation in the Fire Starter Brands program. It was wonderful for us and I'm really excited about the response I've seen from operators. We are already planning to work with you again next year!"
Audrey, Hagerstown - Washington County Convention & Visitors Bureau
“Participating in one of Fire Starter Brands' sales missions was one of the most beneficial investments I have made in my career."
Will, West Virginia Division of Tourism
"Our first year in our new Group Tour market has been quite a success. We appreciate the knowledge you and your team provided in helping us get of the ground in 2017."
Julie & Erin, Northern Kentucky CVB
“I would just like to say that it was an absolute pleasure to meet everyone and the entire trip and [the sales mission] appointments were amazing!”
Sue, Seralago Hotel & Suites
“What an awesome surprise… Your information helps keep us on top of new attractions and reminds us of others. Sincerely appreciate!”
Cindy, Touriffic Travel
“It’s now just two days after our sales mission and I’ve already booked business from one of the operators we met! Thank you, Fire Starter Brands!”
Kimmie, New Orleans Plantation Country
“WOOOOO HOOOOOO…..Fire Starter Brands ROCKS! Thanks for all your efforts for North Carolina.”
Kristi, North Carolina Division of Tourism, Film & Sports Development
"I wanted to touch base with you, first to say thank you for working with our group in Florida. They all reported great meetings and positive results from the sales trip."
Sharon, West Baton Rouge Convention & Visitors Bureau
“You and your staff did a great job. Saved me lots of time... I look forward to working with you on [another] mission...”
Evelyn, St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra & The Beaches Visitors and Convention Bureau
“I had a great experience with Fire Starter Brands. The sales mission has opened some doors for our destination."
Annette, Minneapolis Northwest Convention & Visitors Bureau
"I already had two companies call that said they heard of us through Fire Starter Brands."
Carolyn, Welcome to Harlem
"The appointments Fire Starter Brands planned were some of the best I’ve ever attended.”
Katie, Southeast Louisiana Gumbo
"We've seen quantifiable business from the event we hosted with Fire Starter Brands. These programs are a great investment that pay for themselves. Thank you for choosing us!"
Jessica, BB Kings Blues Club & Grill
“I absolutely loved being able to work a sales mission with you and your expertise. I look forward to another opportunity to work with you in the near future. The appointments were wonderful and it was refreshing to be able to share not only my product but just a snapshot of my destination, which I believe has helped with perception and potential product for their clients.”
Tish, The SIX Show
"I had a fantastic time and am very optimistic that last week’s mission will lead to exciting new sales and business relationships. Thank you for putting it all together and making everything happen!"
Frances, Jazz at Lincoln Center
“It was great spending time with you in NYC, thanks for the great sales calls.”
Heather, Stratford Shakespeare Festival
“Fire Starter Brands' positive attitude is absolutely contagious and they constantly exhibit a professional charisma that attracts great people and even better results. Their team is an idea mill when it comes to creating sales and marketing initiatives and strategies. Their 'can do' mentality and commitment to exceeding the expectations of clients will prove time and time again that partnering with Fire Starter Brands is a win for all involved.”
Greg, Warwick Hotel
"What a great sales mission!! We certainly were selling the dream to the tour operators in New England. Thank you again to the great group of people I was able to interact with and gain priceless business connections. I can't say enough about how grateful I am for the support, from a business sense or in the form of laughter. Special thanks to Steve for his guidance and coaching throughout the entire three days of visits."
Bobbi, Comfort Inn / Comfort Suites / Holiday Inn Express
"I had the great pleasure of working with Fire Starter Brands while at the Holiday Inn & Suites Boston-Peabody. When I first spoke with Stephen, I knew right then and there that I was working with a true tourism marketing maven! His enthusiasm, creativity, and drive is what makes him a great leader in our industry. As a young professional, I very much aspire to acquire the experience Stephen has... If you are currently working the Group Tour market and you are not working with Fire Starter Brands you do not know what you're missing."
Stephen, Holiday Inn & Suites
"Stephen has such a zest and enthusiasm for the hospitality and tourism industry. He works with all market sectors with ease. His marketing abilities are very natural, and people will gravitate to him to hear what he has to say. If you need a boost to your marketing efforts, Stephen would be a great asset to you.”
Beverly, Hilton Garden Inn
“It is more productive for me to be on a sales mission with Fire Starter Brands than a seven minute appointment at a trade show.”
Christa, National 4-H Youth Conference Center
“...[their] unique ability to connect with clients, find solutions and get the job done right the first time is unsurpassed. I'd be happy to work with [them] again anytime.”
Ginger, Benchmark Hospitality
"Thank you so much for representing us this past sales mission. It was well received and am in process with 2 of the 3 leads generated so far. "
John, Target Hospitality
“[Fire Starter Brands] has been the ideal model for teamwork, problem solving, sales development and organization.”
Jason, Hard Rock Cafe General Manager of the Year; formerly of Landry’s
"When a tour operator follows up with you on the same day as the appointment, before you've had a chance to reconnect with them... you know the Fire Starter Brands sales missions are working!!! Kudos to your team for selecting quality tour operators who want to sell our products. You created the perfect match for us."
Carolyn, Historic Shopping & Dining Attractions - Faneuil Hall Marketplace, South Street Seaport and Union Station Washington DC
“The experience was very beneficial to building business on a one-to-one basis with both tour operators and other suppliers. I got my money’s worth out of it.”
Carolyn, Golden Corral Restaurants and former NTA Board Member
"Wow! Less than a week after participating in a Fire Starter Brands sales mission, I've already received new business from companies the Fire Starter Brands team introduced us to. Your team did a great job and we appreciate the work you do to help our business grow!"
Will, Skyline Sightseeing
"It's been insane here as well. I'm finishing up some contracts I received this week... one really big one thanks to the Fire Starter Brands sales mission in California!"
Jodi, H&L Charter
“Thank you for the opportunity, and [Fire Starter Brands]... thank you so much for hooking us up."
John, Academy Bus
"I believe the appointments were quality and hope we all benefit from this mission”
Roni, New World Tours/Venture Tours
“I saw immediate sales & great feedback from Fire Starter Brands’ program. I can’t wait to do it again. Plus, Stephen and his team make sure that work can be fun too!”
Merry, Salem Witch Museum
“What a great newsletter; you hit it out of the ball park once again. Wishing you and your team a wonderful 2019.”
Erika, Harlem Spirituals
References From Travel Trade Buyers
These include leisure, group, FIT, wholesale and traditional operator types with global reach.
"Thank you for stopping by the office yesterday along with a few of your partners.
It was great to see you all and hear about some new products that we don’t currently have on offer.
We will work on reaching out to them and adding to our portfolio over the next few weeks."
Jayne, Hotelbeds / Transfer & Activity Bank
“Thank you, Fire Starter Brands. You make our job easier.”
Maria, First Choice Tours
"Fire Starter Brands has a snowball effect. Everything we learn from your partners helps us over and over again. It's hard to find partners we can always count on a trust to help make our product better. Because of Fire Starter Brands, we have become friends and continue to support new suppliers. We thank you for all that you do!"
Denise, Metro Tours
“Fire Starter Brands is great for me. I have learned from and discovered new suppliers that I currently use from the information they share.”
Mellonee, Christian Tours/Burke International Tours Inc.
“I have worked with Stephen for the last several years. He is brilliant at what he does. I always look forward to his updates about his venue and he delivers more than expected for our travelers. Truly, he is one of my favorite people to work with in the industry.”
Melissa, WorldPass Travel Group / WorldStrides
"I appreciate Fire Starter Brands for taking the time to bring us new products and become reacquainted with those we already offer. Your unique ability to bring a collection of relevant suppliers to our attention and personal touch go a long way when we look at which vendors/suppliers we’re going to work with. It’s as if you’ve hand selected each one for us."
Billy Jo, Tourico Holidays
"We try to offer new product and we try hard to offer new destinations. Thank you, Fire Starter Brands, for bringing these to us. Your work is very helpful."
Stephan, Classe Trotteur
"I always open material from Fire Starter Brands because there is something of value in it for me. Without fail, your material consistently opens my eyes to new and exciting product that I can use."
John, Group Travel Consultants Inc
"We thank you for your recent visit to our office, it was brief but worthwhile. We received good information for our clients and you brought new ideas for our business that we will use to create new programs for our customers. It was a wonderful opportunity for making good connections."
Denis, Vacances Beltour
“I love when Fire Starter Brands shares new products with me. Their communications are the best! As always, I can trust Fire Starter Brands to help me find the contacts I need to be successful.”
Heather, Freedom Tours & Travel
"First off, Stephen, thank you so much for the introductions. That is one of the things I love about our industry!!"
"Steve, ...thank you for introducing us to and bringing great people and their venues to our attention. I will update our database so everyone here is on the same page and has 'no excuses' not to use the new product."
Hildegard, Super Holiday Tours
"Fire Starter Brands helps me stay connected with industry suppliers, including those I might not get to see at the big shows."
David, East Coast Group Tours
"We welcome new products & services brought to us by Fire Starter Brands. They present information in a style that really matters to us."
Nancy, Starr Tours
"We are always looking for new ways to market our tours, so I rely on information from partners like Fire Starter Brands to help me make decisions."
Louise, Mid-American Coaches
“The Fire Starter Brands appointments are so much better for us. I want to spend more quality time with my suppliers than just the few moments allowed during a trade show appointment."
Jonathan, America Asia Travel Center
"Your visit to our office helps solidify our memory of each of the products you represent."
Kathy, Suburban Tours
"I love to receive information about things to do and places to visit from Fire Starter Brands. They've found a classy and effective way to give me more wonderful tour ideas."
Judy, TreasureTime Tours
"Stephen is energetic, focused marketing executive. His style of management reflects confidence in the variety of tourism products he markets to members of the tourism industry. A person of integrity, I count on for advice and counsel.”
John, The Tours Program
"Hi Steve! Very nice email... I already used it to start discussions here at the office with my travel consultants."
Donna, Educational Tours Inc.
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