Adina Hodge had to travel all the time as a PhD student and costs were adding up. She wanted to be able to travel as she needed both for work and for pleasure at exclusive rates and now is not only traveling at wholesale costs, but also offering other people the same deals. Read our interview with the lovely Adina below…
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
I was motivated and inspired to start my business when I learned that I could save money on travel and help others do the same. Being a PhD student requires me to travel often in and out of the country for residencies. This could be very costly at times, so I jumped at the opportunity. I signed up and asked questions later because it just made sense.
Tell us about your business.
I have an internet business that offers travel and e-commerce services. It is a home-based business that accommodates all forms of travel and offers Travel Wholesale Memberships. I am an Independent Consultant with Surge365, which has 3 businesses incorporated in one. My business allows people to save money by getting exclusive rates on flights, hotels, car rentals, cruises, vacations and more. My website, maintained by the company, allows me to earn money passively every time someone books travel, earning a dollar for dollar match on my client’s savings. You also get a 110% price match, and earn reward points whenever you or your client books travel. These points go into a vacation vault that allows you to travel or shop for free. Lastly, you can earn unlimited income by sharing the opportunity with others who would benefit from having a travel wholesale membership.
Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?
I am currently giving away 5 $100 gift cards to the first 5 people that become senior partners with me.
Where is your business based?
Where is your business based?
My business is home based, so I am currently operating out of NY. We are all over the United States, and we operate internationally in the following countries; Australia, United Kingdom, Panama, Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, Bermuda, Bahamas, U.S. Virgin Islands, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Canada, New Zealand, and Guam.
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
Thanks to my wonderful company Surge365, once I became a senior partner by joining a platinum membership, all I had to do was name my business and order my business cards. My website is maintained by the company, so all I have to do is log on to check any reports or updates.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
I found it most effective to build relationships with clients, get to know a little about them, what interests them and identify how they can incorporate the travel business into their everyday lives. In addition, we use our travel business to support some of our other businesses, or organizations that we have contact with.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
I would say that one of my biggest challenges would be people assuming that we are “just” another travel agency or business. People are quick to believe that my business is not legitimate, and assume that it is a pyramid or Ponzi scheme.
How did you overcome these challenges?
I was able to overcome these challenges by using my product. I did not have to try and convince anyone of what I had. I just began to use what I had as a platinum member. I was able to shop, earn reward credits, and cash back on purchases through my membership. I booked numerous flights and hotels at discounted rates. I literally compared the pricing to some of the known websites that people normally use to book travel. I was shocked to see for myself that their prices were marked up to nearly $300 for some of the hotels. Once people saw that I was a consumer of my own product, they began to realize that it must be legit.
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
No matter what you do in life everyone goes through some form of season. You have to work your way to the top. I keep motivated watching other people’s success stories that started before me. I like to read motivational material that is catered to this type of business. The material is easier to identify with, because others have experienced what I am learning. I also pray about my business. I found that spiritual guidance is what kept me committed, because I feel that it is my duty, or mission to help others.
How did you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
What differentiates my company Surge365 from all of the other travel businesses, agencies, companies is called “Parity”. All of the other businesses are subject to parity, which means that they have an agreement with the vendors to stay within a certain price range, and they have to publicize their prices online. We at Surge365 are not subject to parity, so the vendors can go as low as they want with pricing because our prices are only revealed to members. They are not publicized. We can get deals for 7 days at an all-inclusive resort for $99 in Jamaica, or $149 In Dominican Republic. It sounds hard to believe, but I have seen it with my own eyes.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
The best advice that was given to me is do not assume that someone would not be interested in an opportunity. Often times we may look at the outward appearance of others judging a book by its cover, and assuming, the person is not good enough, or cannot afford the business. If we take the time to learn and find out, you will be surprised at how many people are waiting for an opportunity like this to knock on their door. The same way I was surprised that something like this could exist; other people have the same reaction.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
I would advise any entrepreneur who is getting started with their business, to be patient. Rome was not built in a day. Some people have false expectations assuming that as soon as they get started, money is going to be shipped to their front door. What you put in is what you will get out of your business. It takes time, effort, and ambition, to build a business. You will reap the rewards with the right mindset and intentions.
What is your favorite business tool or resource?
Surge365 has provided us with an application known as Taxbot that tracks our mileage and keeps records of all receipts of our business transactions. It is our own personal bookkeeper. This is the best application to have when it is time to do your income tax return. You do not have to go fishing for receipts, because you can upload them on the application and send them directly to your accountant or tax professional.
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
“The Twelve Week Year” by Brian P. Morgan & Michael Lennington.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
I am currently learning how to prospect in other countries. I look forward to sharing this opportunity with other all over the world.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
My next goal over the next few months is to be promoted to Regional builder. I am part of 100 Women of Wealth that are W.O.V.E.N. together. We are Women of Vision Experiencing New Beginnings. We reach over 1 million women who are; public speakers, authors, visionaries, musicians, ministers, coaches, and more. Our goal is to help empower and build each other up as women, and we use our vehicle which is Surge365 to fulfill our mission by traveling and meeting others in our businesses. I look forward to meeting women who have a likeminded spirit.