We interviewed Vivie to see if she could help guide other Synotrip tour guides to success.
S: What do you think is the key to getting travellers to choose you over other tour guides?
V: A decent prices is one thing. But the most important is the service you provide. Before customers come meet you, you have to impress them over email. You have to make sure to give them an accurate description of your services and earn their trust.
S: I'm sure your business goes up and down over the year. What was your busiest month in terms of the number of clients you got from Synotrip?
V: I usually get about 10 clients a month. The most clients I got in one month from Synotrip was 23. I think my business will get better and better too!
S: Why do you think it is that you were able to attract so many clients? What is the most important reason?
V: I abide by the saying that "The Client is King". I think honesty is key to attracting clients. Clients don't usually just contact one tour guide, they often contact a few. So it's important to get back to them quickly, be honest and try to suit their specific needs. For example, last year I had a client named Mr. Yong from Singapore. In his email, he mentioned that his wife was 6-months pregnant and they had a 3 year old son. He wanted a 3 day tour. I arranged a special plan for them taking into consideration that it wouldn't be very easy for his wife to walk around a lot. Although Mr. Yong had contacted a couple different tour guides, he ended up booking with me. When I met him, he told me he chose me because I tailored my service specifically for their needs. As a tour guide, it's important to be very considerate of your client's needs.
S: Can you tell me about a funny or interesting experience you had with a traveller you met from Synotrip?
V: ·I got a booking from Synotrip last year from a couple from the UK. The man Philip was working in Shenyang. He just sent me one email to book with me directly without any questions one day before the tour. I was a bit confused - should I trust him or not? Anyway, I went them at their hotel. We were all very happy with each other that day. Philip told me "You're a really reliable tour guide; I didn't have any questions for you, I just wanted to book with you!" Now I've provided services to over 20 guests from Philip's Shenyang factory already.
S: What Do Your Clients Particularly Like About You?
V: They really like my explanations. All I do is prepare well for my job. But for somebody that comes to Beijing for the first time, they really feel like I know almost everything about the city.
S: Of Listings, Photos and Tours, which do you think is best for attracting clients?
V: I think Listings. Clients like to browse Listings of interesting places while planning out their tour.
S: Do you have any other tips for other tour guides on Synotrip?
V: Here are some:
Check emails often and reply right away.
Be very attentive when communicating with potential clients.
Having a premium membership helps.
S: Thanks a lot for taking the time to speak with us Vivie. We wish you good fortune in 2012!