5 Takeaways from Cruise Planners Convention

The Cruise Planners executive team at the convention.
The Cruise Planners executive team at the convention.

A plethora of information was shared at Cruise Planners, an American Express Travel Company’s 2015 Convention—Regenerate, held recently at the Boca Raton Resort and Club, A Waldorf Astoria Resort. Over 600 agents were in attendance to gather information on new technology, tips on how to target each generation, and new updates for Cruise Planners. In addition, execs for the top cruise brands shared what’s new for each during a Cruise Line executive panel, held in “Jeopardy” style. Here, we’ve selected the top five takeaways from the convention we think will help you work smarter, more efficiently, and help you grow your business.

  1. Technology is for all ages. Whether your audience is a Generation Xer, Millennial, Baby Boomer, or a Traditionalist, all age sectors are using technology in one way or another. Cruise Planners offers a variety of ways to help you reach your customers best. Whether it’s through the CP Magazine, e-cards, the consumer app, the website, or through social media (the list goes on). Did you know Cruise Planners home office sends out posts to your social media channels for you? You don’t even have to do extra work for it.
  1. Smart Select. Though this program launched last year, agents who have been using it have shown an increase in sales. This system automatically identifies clients in the agent’s database that best match up with an upcoming marketing campaign based on length of trip, age of customer, their spending habits, etc. Smart Select sends an automated, strategic message on behalf of the agent to potential clients in their database.
  1. Triggered E-mail Campaigns. These campaigns help agents stay in touch with their clients, without having to do additional work. These triggered e-mails, with eight automatic touch points, suggest clients purchase insurance, a pre or post stay, or a shore excursion, for example. According to Cruise Planners, 97 percent of their agents are using this new tool—that’s 300k triggered e-mails sent since its launch last December. This means more sales, as approximately 35 percent of the clients are clicking on at least one element, if not more. Now, clients will also get one more trigger during their trip to encourage them to purchase an excursion while on board.
  1. Trade Show Kit. Agents can now gear up for trade shows with the Cruise Planners trade show kit, including table skirts, balloons, bags, signage and more. The pre-branded merchandise can be customized to include the agency’s information as well.
  1. Mobile Access. Cruise Planners released two new apps for agents during the convention. The first is a consumer-facing app, which allows clients to manage their trip, book shore excursions and more. The other, called eREZ Mobile, is a backend software app that allows agents to run their business on their mobile devices. Agents can access their database, clients, and reservations even when they don’t have Internet access. For more information, visit cruiseplanners.com.