n the past, travelers from the Midwest
have overwhelmingly picked Walt Disney World over California's
Disneyland because the air fare to Florida is lower, the travel
time shorter and activities more abundant, said Crystal Lake (Ill.)
Travel's owners Richard W. Doherty and his wife, Pam, president and
vice president, respectively.
But the agents now recommend Disneyland when baby-boomer clients
in their 50s walk into the office, especially if the customers
already have visited the Florida theme park.
What changed their minds was a fam trip this year to Anaheim,
Calif., where they evaluated several new Disneyland products:
Disney's California Adventure park, the 751-room Disney's Grand
Californian and the Downtown Disney dining-entertainment
Although baby-boomer clients tend to enjoy
Florida, their feedback indicates they also would appreciate less
physically taxing vacations, Richard Doherty said.
At sprawling Disney World, during a typical week, several hours
a day can be spent taking buses, monorails and boats from park to
park and hotel to park.
By contrast, Disneyland in California is pedestrian-friendly,
and clients staying at any of Disney's three hotels easily can walk
to either park or to Downtown Disney.
to these clients, Richard Doherty said, he and his wife film their
own Disneyland videos, edit them down to one hour and always have a
tape running in the office that clients can watch while
"We make six copies, so we can lend them out. We also do this
for cruises," he said.
At this time, there are two copies of the new California video
available, Pam Doherty noted.
Crystal Lake Travel, which is a member of Midwest Agents Selling
Travel Vacation Partners, generated about $700,000 in Disney sales
for 2000, including theme park and Disney Cruise Line trips,
according to Richard Doherty.
With Disney's new California product, the agency expects to do
better this year, he said; Disney volume grew last year by 20% vs.
1999, while the agency posted a 10% increase in all business.
In 2000, Disney sales were about 15% of the agency's $8 million
volume, of which $2 million was corporate.
-- Henry Magenheim
An extreme specialist
iane Jedrzejewski, owner of
Ticket to Ride in Riverside, Ill., and a participant on a fam trip
to Disney's California Adventure, runs an agency that for the past
10 years has sold one product: Disney vacations.
This specialty, and a family following, has helped Jedrzejewski
build a cache of tips for agents selling Disney. Some of her
pointers follow:For families going from the Midwest to Anaheim, Calif., she
recommends a minimum three-night stay to assure them the
opportunity to take in both Disney's California Adventure and
Another reason for her recommended length of stay is that
children's schedules can be upset by the two-hour time change
between Chicago and Anaheim.
For a child, the day of arrival could be lost in terms of a park
Suggest clients stay at a Disney hotel because of the easy
entry to the parks.
Jedrzejewski said she was impressed by the refurbished Disney's
Paradise Pier Hotel as well as the new Grand Californian.
The view of California Adventure's Paradise Pier zone from both
hotels is memorable for a child, she said. For Jedrzejewski, it
brought to mind Tinkertoy images, especially the shapes of the Sun
Wheel, a Ferris wheel-like ride; the Mali Boomer vertical launch
ride, and the curved California Screamin' roller coaster.
When Jedrzejewski sells Disney World in Florida to families, she
asks for the ages of the children, finds out when the family was
there last, how much time they have to spend at the park and if
they plan to relax at the resort or just visit the theme parks.
She recommends specific Disney character breakfasts based on the
ages of attendees -- and staying at Disney hotels because of their
early-entry courtesy (up to 90 minutes ahead of nonhotel guests of
Disney).Calling Disney at 7 a.m. Eastern Time or 6 a.m. Central Time is
helpful for securing prime room space.
Her parent clients also appreciate it when she makes follow-up
phone calls after 9:30 p.m., when children have already gone to
Jedrzejewski added that if agents are invited on a seven-day
Disney cruise, they should experience both the early- and
late-dining options, so they can explain the difference between the
two seatings to clients.
otivation: What floats your
boat? Your future is up to you. You are, in essence, the captain of
your own ship.
Unfortunately, many people forget this message. As a result,
they look to outside sources for the motivation they need.
While outsiders can conjure up salient points designed to
stimulate your thinking, it's your job to identify the triggers
that compel you to action.
When those on your team tell you what motivates them to action,
be sure to listen, for this information will help your company
For example, a man walked into his supervisor's office and said,
"Hey boss, tell me what I have to do for you to buy me a spinnaker.
(A spinnaker is the downwind sail used on a sailboat.) If you buy
me a spinnaker," he added, "I'll embroider your company's logo on
What do you say?
not-so-astute supervisor promptly told his employee to get back to
work. The owner didn't understand how motivation worked.
The employee just told his supervisor what gets his attention --
what "floats his boat" -- and then he put the ball in the other
What could the supervisor have said? He could have told his
employee to land the AT&T account or to sell 150 Seabourn
cabins for an around-the-world sailing trip. Instead, he threw his
employee out of his office.
The bottom line is that no one else can motivate you. Only you
can motivate you.
For you, motivation might be a day off; for others, it is an
office with a window.
Hot buttons come in all shapes and sizes. Everybody gets jazzed
The challenge is to identify what works for you and then to
dangle this carrot in front of yourself to keep you focused toward
achieving your goal.
Managers have double duty. They must also find out what puts the
bounce in their employees' steps and then help them to launch their
As travel agents, being uncreative, negative or whining won't
get you the business you need.
What will propel you to success is your knowledge of how to ride
the waves and your perception of what floats your own boat.
Mike Marchev is a motivational speaker and author of the
sales book "Become the Exception." To receive his free Monday
Morning Marketing Messages, e-mail him at [email protected]
and include the word "list."