Travel Weekly: How to weather the storm: tips for travel businesses

Not sure what to do while your business hits pause?

Step away from your Netflix account and take stock of things using these handy tips from Tash Menon, founder and director of MASH, a business that helps companies with their brand and creative strategies. Here’s what she had to say:

Rise to the occasion 

We are relying on people power to get us through this incredible time and if your business or brand has the ability to help, do it.

We have seen distilleries turn to making hand sanitiser, hotels are reportedly being turned into quarantine spaces and Neuron e-scooters are giving away free passes for Adelaide and Brisbane public health workers.

Being a good corporate citizen has never been so important, as the Deloitte Global Millennial Survey 2019 noted: “Organisations that can make the future brighter for Millennials and Gen Zs stand to have the brightest futures themselves.”

Embrace a new way of getting expert help with marketing challenges

Pay for work completed rather than hefty agency retainers or staff headcounts.

As businesses reduce and freeze their headcounts, this is an alternative way to get the job done by an expert sans overheads, superannuation and annual leave.

Use the downtime to prepare your recovery plan

Get ahead of competitors and use the downtime to prepare your business and brand strategies for when life starts returning to normal and consumer confidence bounces back.

For the travel industry, now could be the time itchy feet Aussies plan their next adventure for when borders reopen.

Visit Sunshine Coast CEO Simon Latchford says they will likely focus on the region’s traditionally strong drive, domestic and New Zealand markets, as Australians and Kiwis are expected to travel closer to home when borders reopen and it’s safe to holiday.

Michael Issenberg, chairman and CEO at Accor for the Asia Pacific, said taking time now to plan for the future will not only help you to be one step ahead; it forces us to remain optimistic and build resilience.

While bookings at the group’s hotels remain low, Accor has been taking the opportunity to upskill staff, provide cross-training in new functions and develop recovery plans.

It’s a great time to do things behind the scenes that you might not normally have time for so that you are ready for the rebound when it comes.

Keep talking to your customers

Even if you’re forced to hibernate your business, keep talking to your customers through social media during the coming months. Freelance digital strategist Siona Singletary says people are online now more than ever, so it’s important to try and stay top of mind for when things return to normal.

Singletary recommends trying to understand the current climate from their perspective – what value can you bring to them? The topics you’re discussing may change, but that doesn’t mean the conversation needs to stop.

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