For your faith-based travel group to survive long-term, it is essential to continuously look for first-time travelers. These newcomers may not be members of your group or even attend the church you work with. However, their presence can ensure a trip is sold out, as well as help keep the group going when other members are no longer able to travel.
To have the opportunity to meet newcomers, you will want to find ways to publicize it. Keeping something in the church bulletin inviting new members to events and trips can help attract new faces.
If there isn’t enough room in the bulletin, you might be able to leave out pamphlets on church tables or hang a sign somewhere. Work with the church leaders to determine how to get the word out for potential travelers.
One of the most successful ways to entice new travelers is by encouraging members to bring a friend. By already knowing someone in the group, these potential travelers will feel much more comfortable. They are more likely to book a trip knowing they have at least one friend in the group, which in turn can help grow your faith-based travel group.
The best way to turn newcomers into repeat customers is to “wow” them. Impressing them by going above and beyond a normal group tour can go a long way.
Often appealing to their stomach’s can do the trick with events or preview parties decked out with tasty food. Depending on your budget, you can prepare it yourself, ask for volunteers or even hire a caterer if it is just too big of a group. Try to spoil these potential members as much as you can to help convince them to return.
Some ways to exceed expectations might be to arrange a pick up and drop off service from travelers’ homes. This is a nice act of generosity that will be much appreciated.
Personal touches are also often not found in other forms of travel. You can develop relationships with newcomers from the beginning. Many group leaders send birthday cards or do other special things to let the travelers know they are appreciated.
The element of surprise can be very effective towards this goal. An unscheduled behind-the-scenes tour, carriage ride or being given the gift of a local craft or souvenir can let first-time travelers know you value them.
Even just a surprise stop at Dairy Queen with free desserts on the way home can make a deep impact. Use you imagination, because thinking outside the box can go a long way in turning the heads of potential group travelers.