ShareTrip cofounder Sadia Haque says the company is pushing the country’s travel industry to greater heights
ShareTrip is the largest online travel agency and runs the most popular travel mobile app in the country, which provides flights, hotels, visa and holiday packages worldwide for its customers. The company’s cofounder Sadia Haque says that the success came not only through technical sophistication, but from its focus toward acting on the needs and requirements of its customers.
Haque is also CCO at DataBird, the group investing in internet-based companies in Bangladesh, including in ShareTrip.
Even though its official entry is happening now, DataBird has been working in the Bangladesh market from 2018, ShareTrip being one of its first investments in the country. In two years, ShareTrip has managed to come out to the top of the travel industry in Bangladesh.
ShareTrip’s success is in part due to its holistic approach to travel. Choosing to provide one complete solution for travellers means they can ensure a consistent experience. Before the investment from DataBird, ShareTrip was operating as Travel Booking BD.
The rebranding was supervised by Haque, who is a communication specialist with years of experience of working at big companies such as Grameenphone, BBC World Service Trust, Nokia, and Banglalink. She ensured that the transition did not cause a reduction in the previously acquired client base.
ShareTrip operates in a market that was once totally offline. Most people got their tickets, hotels and holiday packages from offline travel agents. ShareTrip is augmenting that section by offering people the option to choose from a vast inventory of travel solutions right from its website and a mobile app. People are free to customize according to their needs because there is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to travel.
ShareTrip excels at understanding these customizations to surmise the nature of the industry and act accordingly to bring about the change and push the industry to greater heights. ShareTrip does this while balancing both the offline and online modes of communicating to their customers. The disparity in these two groups are often so incredibly vast one can hardly believe both reside in the same country. Insights gained while working with these two groups help ShareTrip in providing meaningful services that would bring more people online and in turn close the gap that remains in offline and online users.
Companies have to invest in building relationships with consumers that are more than transactional. Industry veteran Sadia Haque is already very much aware of these new norms as seen in ShareTrip’s communication during lockdown that followed the coronavirus pandemic.
ShareTrip provided regular communique across its social media platforms updating its community on travel restrictions as they developed. “It has become more important than ever to communicate and educate the public on the new travel paradigms that will ensure the safety of everyone involved,” said Sadia Haque about ShareTrip’s strategy going forward. ShareTrip managed to forge deeper connections with its community even when everyone was forced to be physically distant from others.
Due diligence like this can also be expected from companies in DataBird under Sadia Haque’s leadership. DataBird already employs over 160 people and is looking to hire more personnel for dedicated teams tasked to create meaningful relationships with the consumers.
Managing the multiple consumer brands under DataBird starting from ShareTrip, Ridmik News, Keyboard, e-book reader and life-style applications with the same philosophy in terms of building organizational culture, understanding consumer traits for the conversion of offline transactional users to online platforms are the key parameters that she along with her team are striving to achieve.
A key driver of success for these brands is their resources. Haque says that each member of the organization needs to have the same level of passion and vision if the companies are to succeed in the longer run. The DataBird team is working towards developing this army of resources who will take the DataBird brands to greater magnitude and success.
In line with strengthening the internal ambassadors, DataBird CCO is also working towards building long term relationships with the end-users of their different brands. “Many of us fail to realize that to retain customers, acting on their needs and requirements is a must,” said Sadia Haque.
Through the common ecosystem that has been built under DataBird, they are being able to bring customized and personalized solutions to these consumer needs and the results are reflecting in their high retention rates among their consolidated user base.
Enriching and enhancing the lives and tech landscape in Bangladesh is the modus operandi of DataBird. This gargantuan task cannot be done alone and DataBird is already working in promising fields to continue on its vision for the future. A future of consistent seamless experience across the sprawling internet ecosystem.