I am a big believer in finding add-on, ancillary streams of income for any business. It is a time-honored truism in the business world that the hardest thing to do is find a customer and the easiest thing to do is sell something else to a customer you already have.
That’s why your local hairdresser sells special shampoos and other gels and gadgets. That’s why your local supermarket features magazines at the checkout counter. Travel agents can do the same thing.
Here’s an idea that can not only let you provide a much needed service to your existing customers, but that also can act as a way of attracting new customers (or at least prospects) for your core travel marketing business. A “Notary Public” is a semi-official position in all states of the United States. To quote the National Notary organization, “A Notary Public is a public servant appointed by state government to witness the signing of important documents and administer oaths.” In exchange for providing this valuable service, the notary receives a small fee, which varies from state to state. (Canada may have something similar, but I am not familiar with Canadian practice in this area. Perhaps a Canadian reader can enlighten me.)
People need the services of a notary for all sorts of things, especially when they are mailing government or legal documents and the recipient wants some assurance that they are who they say they are. Enter the notary. Trouble is, it’s getting harder and harder to find a notary. Banks used to provide this service and some still do. But performing the services of a notary does not bring banks the big bucks they increasingly demand, so they’re cutting back.
By becoming a notary, you can provide a valuable paid service to your existing clients, gain a reputation in your community as the “go-to guy” for quick and friendly notary services, earn some money off people who may never buy travel from you, and identify new prospects who might become very good (not to mention profitable) customers.
Best of all, virtually anyone over 18 can become a notary with a minimum of fuss and expense. If this sounds interesting to you, a good place to start your research is the web site of the National Notary Association.
There you will find links to information about becoming a notary in all 50 states.
But before you become a notary, become a home-based travel agent.