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Five Mistakes Most Home-Based Travel Professionals Make and…and How You Can Become “The Exception”

By Mike Marchev, CTC

The travel bug is alive and well, and once it gets a hold on you it is very difficult to shake. There are a number of ways the bug takes hold, but that is another story for another day. Today, I want to focus on the five mistakes you must avoid making if you have an interest in sustaining a healthy (spelled profitable) home-based travel business.

1. Relying on your past success as a travel mechanic. Chances are you decided to launch on your own as a result of your love for travel, and you wanted to share your passion. This sounds wonderful, but it has very little to do with running a business. There will be little need for your knowledge and expertise if you have nobody to share your wisdom with. Your primary job and responsibility as a home-based entrepreneur is to get more of the right people to know you, like you and trust you. Then and only then, can you display your talent.

2. Treating your new business as a hobby. You probably dreamed about being your own boss thinking that you would have the luxury of working just a half-day. I am quick to mention, based on my personal experience of more than 30 years, that this is absolutely true. What 12-hours you choose to work each day is entirely up to you.

3. Promoting yourself as a generalist. The nature of the travel beast helps support this strategy. You can assist just about everybody with their plans, dreams, and bucket lists. After all, everybody who has a desire to leave town can benefit from what you know. The truth is however, that you will soon know very little about an awful lot of places. As a result, when push comes to shove, you will appear to be the least attractive resource. Don’t make this mistake. Become a specialist. Focus.

4. Allowing yourself to become lonely. Working alone is fun and can be relatively stress-free as a result of not having to deal with other people’s quirks and working at your own pace. It can also be quiet and rewarding. The downside is that it can become tiresome listening to your own breathing patterns. It can get lonely. It is imperative that you establish some degree of social interaction while getting out of your working environment on a regular basis.

5. Failing to understand that you are in the marketing business. I won’t candy-coat this final mistake. It is the single reason why you will succeed or fail. It may be spelled “travel” and it might involve airplanes, cruise ships, hotel rooms and rental cars, but the word that encapsulates your home-based existence is called MARKETING. You have to get up, get out and make more people glad that you are alive. Believe it. Breathe it. Sleep it. Practice it. Live it. Do it.