Travel Trade and Business Development Manager
Part of MAG, East Midlands Airport welcomes 4.5 million leisure and business passengers through its terminal travelling with airlines such as Ryanair, Jet2, Thomson, Thomas Cook, Flybe, bmi Regional and more.
Our location in the heart of the East Midlands means we are surrounded by a large number of Travel Agents and businesses, integral to the success of the airport and keen to support us.
This role will be the face of East Midlands Airport within the Travel Trade distribution channel and the development of new and existing business with key corporates in the area.
The role is predominantly field-based, with 3/4 days of the week out in the region, making contacts, promoting partner airlines, meeting with travel industry partners, attending networking events and meeting with senior management and travel coordinators from local businesses.
This role is not for a shrinking violet – you will need to be confident in dealing with all levels of stakeholders, be extremely organised and target-driven.
The Travel Trade and Business Development Manager will be responsible for all East Midlands Airport trade and business communications (email, social, phone) as well as all trade and business events both on and off site
Facts & Figures:
4.7 million passengers in 2016/17
• 30.7 million people within two hour drive time
• Travel agencies - circa 300 contacts in East Midlands alone
• Over 30 key businesses in East Midlands region
• Circa 20 key industry bodies / tourist boards
• 14 airlines and tour operators
To support the growth of East Midlands Airport including the increase of passenger numbers from both a leisure and
business market by:
• Understand the overall commercial impact of travel trade on East Midlands Airport and its role in the successful future of the airport
• Work with the Head of Marketing to propose a new strategy to grow and develop Travel Trade bookings from East Midlands Airport through demonstrating excellent marketing, sales and influencing skills.
• Conduct promotional visits to travel agents on an agreed call cycle, developing strong relationships to ensure agents always book flights and holidays out of East Midlands Airport
• Create relationships with key trade governing bodies and national sales managers to further promote East Midlands Airport.
• Work with the Head of Marketing to devise marketing campaigns and ensure they are distributed accordingly to support marketing campaigns
• Develop commercial deals with Trade Agents/Organisations where appropriate and in keeping with the objectives of the Airport’s growth
• Create, develop and maintain a reporting system to fully understand the volume of sales via Travel Trade agents in order to monitor booking levels and feed into the Marketing team to ensure the development of suitable campaigns for both trade and consumer
• Creating a calendar of events throughout the year, which engages with Travel Trade in the region, sets us apart from our competitors and creates ideas good enough to submit for relevant industry awards
• With support of the central CRM team, and in line with the Airport’s digital and social media plans, create and manage digital and social media communications for trade only
• To actively tackle passenger leakage from East Midlands Airport’s core catchment
• Working with the Manchester-based Corporate Relationship team to ensure handover of all key business contacts in the East Midlands Region, organising joint meetings where appropriate
• Connecting with the key businesses as identified by the East Midlands Airport Commercial Team and developing relationships with the main decision maker of travel from that business. Feeding back any potential opportunities to the Head of Commercial to secure deals.
• Working closely with the Head of Aviation Development on potential areas for growth at East Midlands Airport following feedback from businesses. Being integral to the development of new routes out of the airport in order to support business expectation and expansion in the region
• Create, develop and maintain a reporting system to fully understand how businesses use East Midlands Airport and its competitors in order to monitor booking levels and feed into the Marketing team to ensure the development of suitable campaigns
• Working with the Head of Marketing and Head of External Affairs on development of business relationships in destinations with relevant bodies from regions, e.g. Chambers of Commerce
• To actively tackle passenger leakage from East Midlands Airport’s core catchment
This role is target-driven and assessed on passenger volume on specific routes and airlines across both Travel Trade and Business associated routes.
Decision - Making:
This role requires someone who can operate effectively under a high level of autonomy and self-management of time and tasks / projects as post holder will often be out of the office.
Key challenges are:
- Strongly influencing the Travel Trade and Businesses in the region to convert from booking out of competitor airports and always from East Midlands Airport
- Ensuring Travel Trade and Business contacts are aware and familiar with all routes and carriers operating out of East Midlands Airport
- Ensuring both the travel industry and key businesses in the region have strong two way communication channels with East Midlands Airport
- Delivering commercially astute deals with travel agents / tour operator partners and businesses that drive increased market share
Key decisions are:
- High level of self-sufficiency (often traveling and holding sales / marketing / commercial meetings alone)
- How to invest budget to get maximum growth in passengers at East Midlands Airport through both the Travel Trade and Business channels
- Influencing of both Travel Trade and Business contacts to ensure they always book travel from East Midlands Airport
Key Contacts & Relationships:
Travel Agents (including multiples, miniples, independents, consortia, business agents, home workers, on line travel agents, call centres)
• Key East Midlands Businesses (including senior management, travel teams)
• Key airline / tour operator accounts
• Travel industry stakeholders (eg ABTA)
• Commercial Team members, including Aviation Development
• East Midlands Airport internal teams (including Internal and External Comms, Customer Services, Operations)
• Wider teams across MAG (Manchester, London Stansted, Bournemouth)
• NOTE: There are no direct reports to this role.
Knowledge, Experience & Skills:
Educated to degree level and will have a minimum of 4 years travel trade / travel industry / tourism / marketing experience.
• A marketing qualification (or equivalent work experience) is desirable but not essential. Strong commercial acumen is a must.
• Astute and flexible, with strong influencing skills and entrepreneurial approach to work. Ability to manage both urgent tactical activity with more strategic plans.
• Proven ability to design and deliver large and small-scale events, with clear targets and results to demonstrate
• Must have a strong understanding of travel industry / travel trade trends, booking patterns, developments, innovations
• Must be a strong commercial relationship builder
• Must understand key trends in marketing / travel trade / broader travel industry / business development
• Must have knowledge of running travel trade incentives and events (eg new route incentives / travel agent promotional events)
• Must have experience of developing key corporate relationships and be able to demonstrate the results of this
• Must have strong planning skills and be able to demonstrate this. Planning will generally need to be over a 3, 6 and 12 month horizon, depending on the project and changing needs of the business and our partners
• Must be able to demonstrate independent working and presentation skills, which are both essential to this role
• An ability to construct and present a clear and persuasive point of view is key
• Ability to manage a trade and business database, email communication programme and social media channels (trade only)
• Be ready to work evening/weekend events alongside key accounts as required
• Must be an innovative thinker, with evidence of an inquisitive approach to work, continually looking for new ways of increasing revenue
• Strong relationship builder / interpersonal skills with excellent communication skills
• Customer focussed, self-starter with ‘can do’ attitude and bags of enthusiasm to make a real difference to East Midlands Airport
• Must be prepared to travel to other MAG airports / locations as and when required
• Must be prepared to travel to events throughout the UK, Europe and globally, as and when required
• Full UK driving licence
• Flexibility to travel overnight and stay away from home where needed.
• The post holder must be able to analyse trading performance data to ensure they have a clear understanding of key performance indicators
• It is anticipated that the role will require travel for approximately 3 / 4 days a week within the EMA catchment area and will attract a job allocated car
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