You are probably in the thick of summer busy season, but I am sending this short story to share a personal experience that goes to the heart of why we started Arival. I think you’ll find this story meaningful. Reading time: less than 3 minutes.

Just this week I booked a zip-line tour for an upcoming family vacation. I found the operator on TripAdvisor, but I still had some questions so I looked up the website. (TripAdvisor friends – I hope you won’t hold that against me.)

I got to the website (which was pretty good), but I couldn’t book online. I had to call. But no big deal, I had some questions. So I called, asked my questions, gave her my phone and credit card number and made the reservation. The woman I spoke to did not try to upsell anything to me. She didn’t say anything to get me excited about the experience.

I asked if she would send me an email confirmation. Her response: “No, we’ve got your phone number. See you soon.”

I tried to give this company my email address, and they wouldn’t take it.

Now, they can’t email me. They can’t try to upsell me. They can’t market to me in the future. They can’t communicate with me in advance to get me pumped up about my experience.

Our industry – Tours, Activities & Attractions – is home to many incredible entrepreneurs passionate about their experience, their tour, their attraction. But staying on top of the digital expectations of today’s customers is harder than ever. It requires dedication. Persistence. It’s a discipline.

Digital, marketing, social media, mobile, online booking, analytics, Google, pricing, working with the growing list of online travel agencies and distributors, choosing technology… For all of these, there are more choices, and more challenges, than ever.

That’s why we started Arival: to assemble our industry and together advance the business of creating amazing in-destination experiences.

Share this story with your friends and colleagues in our industry.

Do you have a story we should tell? Email me.

If you haven’t registered, consider joining us this September in Las Vegas. Connect with more than 30 potential travel resellers and scores of tech companies. Attend hands-on workshops on every topic mentioned above – and more! Hear from the brightest minds and most influential brands in our industry. And have a great time. (Lots of fun, great people, plenty of parties!). It’s a great conference. Our more than 500 attendees last year loved it. We think you will too. Take advantage of summer savings and register prior to July 31 to save $300.