Avoya Travel recently concluded its third annual Avoya Mastermind Land Forum, which took place virtually May 4–7, 2021. Hundreds of independent agencies in the Avoya Travel Network attended the event, which included the participation of over 40 of Avoya’s preferred land partners, a mix of networking opportunities, and an array of educational and professional development options. The event was complimentary for the Avoya Network and offered presentations by travel suppliers in the land vacation space including keynote addresses from Paula Hayes, vice president sales at the Globus family of brands; Jim Tedesco, vice president of sales at Apple Leisure Group Vacations; Jim Marini, vice president of strategic partnerships at Amtrak Vacations & Railbookers; and other.
Avoya also shared data during the event’s General Sessions and made several major announcements regarding the future of its land vacation strategy and technological infrastructure. Among the most noteworthy numbers shared are the nearly 50 percent increase in overall resort sales in the previous 60 days compared to 2019 figures as well as a 70 percent increase in its patented Live Leads for resort products during that same timeframe. Important announcements include enhancements to the resorts section of the Avoya Travel consumer website and expansion of the brands and properties on display, as well as further improvements to the integration of hotels and resorts within Avoya’s proprietary SaaS technology, Agent Power. Avoya also unveiled the launch of the latest phase in its “Vacations to Take Now” marketing campaign featuring a deals hub and marketing blitz showcasing 15 vacation packages, enhanced by exclusive promotions; the newest version of the campaign is running May 9–24, 2021.
Jeff Anderson, co-president of Avoya Travel, addresses a session.
The virtual event’s robust networking opportunities were another component of the programming that was applauded by both independent agencies and Avoya’s preferred land partners alike. Throughout the program attendees had the option to schedule one-on-one appointments with travel suppliers and other agencies, participate in “speed dating” with the event sponsors to encourage more varied networking, join supplier “office hours” to facilitate personal and small group interactions, and attend a large tradeshow featuring travel supplier virtual expo booths; all of this was in addition to nightly cocktail parties designed to offer a more casual atmosphere for networking, socializing, and relationship building.
One of the most highly praised elements of the event was the innovative “Virtual FAM Trips,” a look at a supplier’s product experience where attendees explored products firsthand via recorded videos created specifically for Avoya that were aimed at providing experiential learning about the products through virtual tours, explanations of the product, and even conversations with key staff members. The immersive and engaging educational videos also highlighted important health and safety protocols the travel suppliers have developed for their products throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to provide travelers with a safe and secure vacation experience.
Avoya has also announced the 2021 Avoya Conference will take place virtually December 6–10, 2021 and has plans to announce several Avoya Mastermind Virtual Success Academies throughout the year.
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