Many tour operators we know have found that breaking into the corporate events market space can be challenging. At UpLevel, we believe that in order to attract the business you’re after, you have to have the right conversation with your audience.
The first step to any successful sales conversation is knowing who you’re talking to. We call this your Target Corporate Guest.
Let’s say her name is Ashley and she’s a sales manager for a local Fortune 500 company in your market. Ashley does quarterly events as rewards for her sales team when they hit their numbers. She is also responsible for entertaining big sales clients when they come for on-site visits.
At this month’s UpLevel Town Hall, we laid out effective ways to start a conversation with target guests like Ashley that will take her from a stranger to your tour to a potential repeat client.
Key takeaways we heard from our attendees
- Christopher Andrews of Bienville Bites in Mobile, AL says that creating a corporate tour landing page for his website, and including testimonials from previous corporate clients, will be the next step in his efforts to attract more corporate clients. That way, he’ll be able to have a direct conversation with his target corporate guests.
- Erwin Liekens of Taste the City tours in Antwerp, Belgium wants to keep in touch with previous corporate clients in hopes of creating repeat clients for his business. Additionally, he aims to create new blog articles, and focus this new, valuable content to engage with his target clients.
- Yoko Isaji of Food Story Tours in Japan also sees the value in maintaining her relationships with previous corporate clients. Like so many tour operators, the pandemic temporarily closed her business, and she feels engaging with her prior satisfied clients is a great place to start rebuilding her corporate events.
8 Ways to Start Conversations with Corporate Tour Clients
- Concierge & Event Planners at Local Hotels: When conferences and corporate groups come to town, your relationships with these key allies can steer corporate groups to your tour.
- Fortune 500/100 Companies in Your City: Performing a simple search for the big companies in your market will tell you where to start engaging on platforms like LinkedIn. Companies like these have multiple departments and divisions that could benefit from your tour.
- Host a Webinar: Once you’ve made some contacts in the corporate or DMC spheres, hosting simple webinars around things to do in your community can provide free value to the attendees, and act as a stage to highlight the tour destinations you offer.
- Engage on LinkedIn: Following, liking, and messaging your target clients on LinkedIn is a great way to get your business in front of the people — like event planners, team leads, and executive assistants — who could most benefit from your tour.
- Share Your Blogs on LinkedIn: Instead of worrying about whether your blog articles will return highly on a Google search, use them in a targeted way as content for your LinkedIn posts and DMs. Sharing your content this way will keep you top of mind with your target clients, and provide them value that they’ll associate with your brand.
- DMC’s: Destination Management Companies are tasked with planning and executing huge, often days-long corporate retreats and events. They’re always looking for companies like yours to provide their clients with a great time.
- Get Listed in Top 10 Blogs: A quick Google search of the top things to do in your area for corporate groups will return a number of popular local blogs. Reach out to those bloggers and see if they’ll include you on their lists. It brings credibility and visibility to your brand, and puts your company in front of your target client who is likely performing similar searches.
- Keep in Touch with Past Groups: The most effective way to increase your corporate business is to maintain the relationships you’ve already established. A targeted, longterm email campaign with that segment of your email list will keep your company at the forefront of your past clients’ minds when it’s time for them to book another event.
After you start the conversation
In this clip, hear how Heather Fortes with SacTown Bites is taking the next step with a one-page PDF she can easily send out to potential guests.
Some Good News
There can be a lot of scary stuff happening in the world – we like to provide some good news. Here was the good news from this month’s Town Hall.
Register now for the next Town Hall
If you couldn’t make our Town Hall, never fear: we’ll be back next month.
This year we will continue to explore new strategies to grow your corporate and private tour business.