Travel Agents, Get Ready for Meme May

TRAVEL AGENT | ROBIN AMSTER | APRIL 28, 2016

Photo via memegenerator.net

The ongoing Travel Agent Awareness campaign is set to launch its next online event, Meme May, to take place May 4.

Meme May will use memes, shareable social media images, to highlight with humor and an engaging way, the value of travel consultants.

The Travel Agent Awareness campaign, introduced last fall by independent contractor Leila Coe of World Class Travel in Gainesville, Fla., grew out of Coe’s frustration with the public’s lack of awareness of travel agents, what they do, and the value they bring to booking consumers’ travel.

The first Travel Agent Awareness Week, held last November, focused on a “grass roots” campaign involving a Facebook group Coe founded. That was followed by a Travel Agent Awareness day Feb. 1.

“Our goal has been to make it clear to the consumer that travel agents are still thriving,” said Coe. “Our network of travel professionals is a vibrant online Facebook community, where agents network, as questions, and share ideas on ways to communicate this message with the public.”

Meme May is aimed at encouraging agents to create their own travel related memes to share with their client base through their preferred social media channels - whether it be Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

“We have also been giving agents at least one Meme to use if they aren’t sure how to make their own,” Coesaid. “Agents receive them in a weekly email that we’ve been sending out each Monday. They are also on our Facebook group page.”

In addition, the campaign collaborated with industry travel industry consultant Nolan Burris, of Future Proof Travel Solutions, on a video for Meme May.

Agents are asked to start sharing the Meme’s on May 4th which coincides with Canada’s Travel Agent Day.

“We are hoping that having both events on the same day will have more impact than if we did each separately,” Coe said. “Travel Agent Day is more like a national appreciation day of travel agents versus what we are trying to do.” 

The Travel Agent Awareness campaign from February garnered hundreds of posts on social media sites and over 130,000 impressions on Twitter, according to Coe. The Facebook group has also grown since February with nearly 1,500 members.

“We also have almost 450 agents who have signed up in our directory on our website, TravelAgentAwareness.com,” Coe said. 

“Our events gain more consumer and industry attention each time so we are hoping by doing them regularly, four times a year, we will keep building on that awareness,” she added.

Travel Agent Awareness campaign co-organizer Jacob Marek of 45 Degrees Marketing views the group as an effective way for travel professionals to promote themselves.

“So many travel consultants are amazing at planning travel, but struggle in effectively communicating their value to the general public,” Marek said. “We’re excited to provide agents with free marketing resources and tools that they can use to spread the word and promote their expertise.” 

To participate in Travel Agent Awareness, use the Twitter and Instagram hashtags #TravelAgentAwareness and #TravelAgents, and join the online Facebook community at facebook.com/groups/travelagentawareness.