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6 Ways to Captivate Customers During a Tour or Activity

Last updated on February 24, 2023
5 minute read
Key Takeaways

  • Plan a tour with unexpected surprises and fun facts.
  • Practice commanding a crowd and speaking with confidence.
  • When customers enjoy themselves, they'll be more likely to leave a great review.

Skill Level

Beginner, Intermediate

Have you ever been on a tour or participated in an activity that absolutely enthralled you?

Maybe the tour guide was a natural comedian who kept the whole group laughing, or the commentary had so many twists and turns that you never knew what would happen next.

No matter why the tour stands out, what matters is that it’s memorable—there’s nothing worse than being bored during an activity you spent money on. Listening to someone drone on and wondering when the activity will be over certainly makes for a dull experience.

As a tour and activity operator, you want your activity leaders to captivate and engage your customers from beginning to end. Here are some tips to ensure your customers are entertained throughout the entire experience—so much so that they leave you a great review!

1. Deliver commentary with confidence

Whether you’re walking the streets of Rome or leading customers on a kayak expedition, part of being a great tour guide is knowing how to command a crowd. 

That’s why it’s so important to work on your storytelling skills. This involves asking and answering questions, injecting your personality and humor into the experience, and speaking clearly. 

Pro Tip: Try to get “off book” as soon as possible. When you’re focused on reading notes, you lose out on interactions with your customers and you won’t be able to get a sense of their reactions. This will come with time as you run through the itinerary repeatedly.

When you’re passionate about the topic and location, it will show!

2. Use emotion to create a sense of wonder

There may be important facts and historic details to share on your tour, but there’s always a chance to make the experience exciting. Start the tour with questions and statements that create excitement and build up to the climax of the activity. 

Try to talk about the people involved with the location or activity and the details of their lives. For example, when visiting a medieval castle, a great tour guide would not just describe the building and location, but the lives of the former residents as well—especially anything particularly juicy or newsworthy that happened.  

3. Tell fun facts alongside historical commentary

Many people go on tours specifically to learn historical facts, but that doesn’t mean they have to be dull. Just like some tours and activities go off the beaten path, you can do the same in your tour content.

Try sharing historical facts in a short, snappy way, and inject other fun facts as well. Point out interesting details and lesser known facts that the average person might not know. If you’re able to share something obscure or out of the ordinary, that’s a great way to make the experience even more memorable. 

4. Point out the best photo ops

a person standing in front of a mountain

As a tour guide, you’ve probably covered the same itinerary more times than you can count. This means you have a few tricks up your sleeve, like which spots make for the best photos. 

Customers appreciate when you take time to break for a photo op—and you’ll get bonus points for offering to snap the photo yourself! 

5. Share local insights

You can go above and beyond during the tour by working in a few recommendations for customers to spend their time. For example, on a walking tour through your city, even if you don’t have time to stop at a certain place, you can briefly recommend it to customers to visit later.

6. Teach something new

The best experiences teach us something we didn’t know before. Whether you’re sharing a funny colloquialism, showing customers a shortcut, or divulging a secret ingredient in a local dish, your guests love feeling like they’re getting special treatment.

Whether you’re launching a new tour or refining a customer favorite, pay attention to guest feedback and always be on the lookout for ways to improve the experience. Read more about tour and activity industry insights here.

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