Creating a Trade Fact Sheet

21 November 2012

A trade fact sheet is a sales tool you can use to promote your product to your travel trade distribution partners, such as inbound tour operators (ITOs), online travel agents (OTAs), wholesalers and retailers. It is a document produced by a business specifically to help new and existing travel trade partners understand the experiences on offer and communicate all the information they might need to sell their product(s).A fact sheet is also a tool to sell your experience to potential travel trade partners, so it is important to make your information as concise as you can. Make sure you clearly communicate the experience that your trade partners can expect their customers to have. It will help them assess how your product(s) might fit into their programs and itineraries.

Download an example trade fact sheet

Tips for creating a trade fact sheet

  • Keep your writing concise and easy to read, preferably using one page per product. There’s no need to provide long paragraphs of text.
  • Use headings, sub-headings and clear points. Remember, this is a trade marketing piece, not a customer brochure. Your layout and language should be targeted to trade buyers.
  • If you offer more than one experience, or the same experience in different locations, consider creating separate fact sheets for the respective components so you don’t mix up any of the details. You can then provide single page fact sheets as relevant or group them together in a trade sales kit.
  • Avoid overly informal language or slang as it can easily get lost in translation, even between English speaking markets. The safest bet is to use plain English that focuses on communicating the visitor experience.
  • It is important your unique selling point (USP) is clear. Don’t forget to highlight what makes your experience stand out.
  • Use good quality, high resolution images that demonstrate the experience you offer.
  • Include essential information (see below) laid out clearly so it is easy to scan for information and to make bookings.
  • Proof read your fact sheet and make sure your information, spelling and grammar is all correct. For example, only proper nouns (places and people’s names), acronyms and the first word in a sentence should start with a capital letter. All other words should be lower case. You may want to skim through your fact sheets and check this as it will improve the look and flow of the text. Good grammar and presentation will reflect the professionalism of your business.
  • Do a final check of your fact sheet before you begin to distribute it. Make sure all the information is clear, easy to understand and accurate. Are your directions clear’ Should you add a map’ Are your unique selling points clear’ Do your inclusions demonstrate the full value of your experience’ Did you include the correct availability, booking and contact details’
  • Check your file is easy to open and a manageable size, especially if it is to be emailed. Remember your image quality will differ for print and online publication, so if you are printing you will need a higher resolution.

Essential information for your trade fact sheet

Make sure your trade fact sheet includes essential information laid out clearly so it is easy to scan for information and to make bookings.

About the company
This is a brief overview of who you are and what you offer.

About the tour, attraction or accommodation
This is a brief introduction about your product. Make a separate sheet for each different product you offer.

Tour inclusions or property facilities
For tours or attractions - list the inclusions and selling points to help travel trade understand the experience that visitors will have. This is your chance to identify your unique selling points. This should focus on tangible inclusions, such as lunch and transfers.

For accommodation - list the property facilities including dining options, room types and facilities and bedding configurations.

Features
Highlight the features that make your product stand out. This is where you can detail your unique selling points. Some examples of product features include unusual itinerary highlights, access to insider knowledge or locations, or unique interactions with people or places not offered elsewhere.

Location
Your physical location or address. If you are offering a tour, detail where the tour starts, and include some itinerary highlights.

It is good practice to include a map to show the location in the context of the surrounding area, including proximity to major towns, landmarks or airports.

Depending on how your customers find you, you might also detail travel distances from nearby cities or transport hubs and parking/access information.

Retail rate
The gross rate, or full price customers pay you directly per adult, per child, per room.

Availability
Days and times the tour, attraction or accommodation operates. Details of blackout periods when the product is not available to be booked, e.g. public holidays.

Bookings
Detail how the product can be booked.

Contact
Your contact phone, email and website.