Travel Counsellors Ltd.: How to Create Personalized Email Communications with ContactMonkey
Sending employee emails from Outlook | 5 minutes reading
Creating personalized employee communication
Comprehensive email analytics, personalization with merge fields
Leisure, Travel & Tourism
Number of Employees
About Travel Counsellors
Travel Counsellors Ltd. is a global travel agency specializing in leisure and corporate travel. Headquartered in Manchester, United Kingdom, the company works alongside 1,900 travel business owners to provide personalized travel experiences for clients.
About Dave Purcell
With over seven years of experience in internal communications, Dave Purcell is the Community Manager at Travel Counsellors. Dave joined the premium leisure and travel company two years ago as the Internal Communications Executive. He oversees relations across the company’s global community and coordinates between 1,900 global partners and 200 colleagues.
It was important for Dave to create a personalized experience while ensuring that key messages were truly reaching his audience. Coordinating weekly communications across 1,900 franchisees proved to be no small task.
This became increasingly challenging for Dave’s team using the internal communications tool they had at the time.
When the COVID-19 pandemic struck, Dave’s internal communications team was faced with new challenges. In light of the pandemic’s toll on travel, the company’s franchisees experienced unprecedented obstacles.
For Dave, it became vital to check in on the wellbeing of his colleagues and partners. This required a greater level of personalization across the company’s internal communications—an undertaking that was virtually impossible with the internal communications tool the team had been using.
“Personalization is what we’re about. I’d had a conversation with the internal communications software provider nine months ago about personalization and whether that could be a possibility—they said ‘no’.”
Alongside the challenge of creating personalized messages, the internal communications tool used by Dave’s team couldn’t provide accurate analytics. As each day of the pandemic brought new rules and regulations for travel, Dave needed to convey up-to-the-minute updates to franchisees.
“As part of our contract, our franchisees need to be engaged with our communications. But we could hardly tell when someone was or wasn’t engaged.”
Without accurate analytics, ensuring that franchisees received key messages became impossible.
“The stats we had previously were unusable and that’s the easiest way I can put it. I was getting 200% open rates, which was just impossible.”
The lack of personalization and inaccurate analytics became deal breakers with their previous internal communications tool. Recognizing the need for a change, Dave began his search for a new, dedicated internal communications tool that could deliver the functionality Travel Counsellors needed.
- Dave needed a tool that could help him create authentic and personal communications during a challenging year for his franchisees. With ContactMonkey, Dave found a tool that offered the degree of personalization his team craved.
“I stumbled across ContactMonkey, and everything just screamed: ‘This is the right platform for us’. It’s pretty fantastic.”
- With features such as merge tags for individualized subject fields and interactive elements like pulse surveys, Dave is able to step up the level of personalization across his communications. This is especially helpful for the company’s email segment, “Welcome to a Brand New Week,” which provides key updates alongside a wellness check.
“Mindset and wellbeing have always been a big part of what we do. It’s even more so now. Our franchisees craved that personal interaction. ‘Welcome to a Brand New Week’ checks in with them on a Monday, sees how they’re feeling with emoji reactions. And we do the same on a Friday.”
- Detailed email analytics were another selling point for Dave when it came to choosing ContactMonkey. Through in-depth email metrics, Dave is able to see whether vital news and resources are reaching franchisees during a period of constant flux.
“Analytics are massively dictating what we are and aren’t doing. With ContactMonkey we could get, not just the accurate reporting, but that granular data.”
- With ContactMonkey, Dave can easily access data on email open rates, click-through rates, read times, and much more. Dave’s team is also able to see response data on the employee pulse surveys embedded in their weekly newsletters. This allows the team to stay on top of how franchisees are doing and what resources can help them do better.
“We look at engagement in terms of the pulse surveys we’re embedding. Checking in with franchisees using the emoji reactions has been a big help and we’re looking at our open rates as a whole to make sure we’re sending the right messages out.”
- To see what content resonated best with the company’s franchisees, Dave and his team simply have to access the analytics dashboard. This provides them with a valuable resource to guide their content creation and boost email engagement with every send.
“Our commercial team is looking at what people are engaging with in terms of link clicks and what they’re not engaging with and changing our tactic depending on that. We also send an update from our CEO and we can now track this more accurately. We’re getting a 90% open rate within two days.”
- ContactMonkey’s email template builder was also a no-brainer when it came to design features. With the ability to set default brand colours and elements as well as save and share email templates, Dave can ensure that every message is both engaging and on-brand.
“From my point of view, the design is far more advanced and the emails just look nicer. There’s also the fact that we can match things to our brand. We can change the radius on buttons and make them rounded—all the buttons in our brand guidelines are round—we could never do that before.”
How ContactMonkey’s Internal Email Sending and Tracking Solution Helps Travel Counsellors
- Personalization through merge tags, customizable email templates, and emoji reactions helped Travel Counsellors foster stronger connections with franchisees.
- Accurate and in-depth email analytics, including open rates and click-through rates, allowed Dave to see whether key resources and news were reaching franchisees.
- Detailed engagement data helped Dave’s team learn what content resonated with franchisees the most and guided them in developing new content.
- Embedded pulse surveys provided a better understanding of how franchisees were feeling and what problems they faced.
- Advanced email template design enabled Dave’s team to create more visually dynamic and customized newsletters.
- Ability to set brand colours and elements while easily saving and sharing templates enabled Dave’s team to create emails that conveyed a unified brand identity.
With ContactMonkey, Dave and his team at Travel Counsellors are able to:
- Get their internal communications to the level of personalization they needed.
- Embed employee pulse surveys and emoji reactions to gauge how franchisees are feeling during a challenging moment in time.
- Keep key partners connected and engaged in a remote work environment.
- Ensure that essential travel news and operational resources reach business partners in time.
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