'Phenomenal Support and No Hidden Fees - A Company I Actually Want to Deal With'
tl;dr: How Lola.com’s transparent pricing and intuitive design help Townsquare Interactive manage travel with ease
Laura Bozzone is the Assistant Business Manager at Townsquare Interactive, a digital marketing company that helps clients with website design, SEO, social media and more. Their HQ is located in Charlotte, NC and holds about 500 employees that serve markets all over the United States. With this comes a lot of travel by their Outside Sales Team and Executive Team.
The task of managing all that travel fell to Laura, and she discovered right away the current process was extremely time-consuming and inefficient. She had to create an excel doc with tabs for each person’s travel information including their legal name, passport number, pre-check info and preferences. Laura knew that misspelling a traveler’s name, even by one letter, would result in a lot of problems when the person tried to board the plane, so she felt a lot of stress every time she booked on behalf of one of her travelers.
“The person managing travel before me had accidentally forgotten a hyphen in someone’s name once and that traveler wasn’t allowed to get on the plane. I really didn’t want to make that kind of mistake.”
As if the stress wasn’t enough, Laura was also spending hours researching flight, hotel, and rental car options on multiple websites trying to find the best deal.
“It was tedious and time-consuming. To book one trip there were so many layers and I had to make multiple phone calls to different vendors to confirm bookings.”
Laura estimated that each booking took her about 20 minutes, and with 10-20 employees traveling per month, that was adding up to a lot of time focused on booking and managing travel. And when something went wrong while a traveler was on the road, Laura was the one the employees would reach out to for help. She was spending many nights and weekends calling hotels and airlines and re-booking flights and cars.
Laura was ready to find a way to make travel booking more organized and less time-consuming. She got approval from her boss to start researching solutions. Laura had calls and demos with 4 different travel management companies, including Lola.
She was looking for:
- Straightforward pricing
- A streamlined way to book on behalf of other employees
- Access to a huge inventory of flight, hotel, and rental car bookings
- 24/7 support
- A company she actually liked doing business with.
Laura found all of the things she was looking for with Lola.
“I had the most successful intro and demo with Lola. I had issues with all of the other companies I spoke to. One was not following up with me and answering my questions, and another had an incredibly high subscription fee and charged an additional $25 per booking. The Lola sales rep responded to me right away, answered all my questions, and you can’t beat paying a flat fee with no hidden booking fees.”
Once Laura decided that Lola was the best option for Townsquare Interactive, she needed to get approval from a few other people at the company. She spoke with her direct manager, the Director of Financial Operations, the Vice President and Corporate Controller. While some people might be nervous making a recommendation to this group of people, Laura felt great about what she was presenting.
“I felt very confident telling the team that we should go with Lola. I knew that financially it was the best decision, and I was excited to be able to show them all the ways Lola’s platform could help us save time and money.”
Now that Townsquare Interactive is using Lola, Laura spends less time booking and managing travel, and more time focused on other parts of her job.
“Lola is so easy to use. There’s no back and forth looking at different documents, copying, and pasting information into different websites. Everything is in one spot and only needs to be entered once.”
Another feature that Laura loves is that everytime she makes a booking she can easily share the info with the traveler without taking multiple extra steps. The whole booking is on Lola, and she only needs to share a link or forward an email. And the travelers love Lola too.
“The Lola concierge team has saved us more times than I can count. I had a situation a few weeks ago where my boss was traveling to Manhattan and bad weather caused his flight to be delayed multiple times and then cancelled. It was 4:30pm on a Thursday and I was swamped. The concierge team was on it right away with new options for him. I used to have to call the airline and sit on hold, sometimes for hours, trying to get him on a new flight. But the Lola team proactively starts solving problems before I even notice them. I appreciate the concierge service more than they will ever know. They are phenomenal.”
What used to take Laura 20 minutes now takes an estimated 5-6 minutes with no back and forth, no need to have multiple tabs open, and no stress on her part.
“Lola has been incredibly helpful in so many ways. They save us time and money which is of course amazing for the company. But for me, they have taken away the anxiety I felt every time I had to manually enter someone’s travel info. The worry of getting that information wrong is gone. On top of that, every person I have spoken with at Lola has been welcoming, accommodating, and friendly. It’s so refreshing to deal with a company like that.”