I recently read "What Got You Here Won't Get You There" by Marshall Goldsmith, which I highly recommened.
I found these paragraphs to have particular relevance to the traditional timeshare industry:
"One of the first things that I have to face with clients is the difference between miswanting and mischoosing. It's subtle, but real. Wanting, after all, is different from choosing. So are those moments when we get either process wrong, when we miswant or mischoose.
The distinction comes from psychologists studing the science of shopping. We want a sweater, for example. Then we choose a certain sweater based on the thought matrix that went into wanting it. For example, there are all sorts of reasons people want a certain type of sweater. They may want it for warmth. They might want it for its feel. They might want one that looks great, or is reputedly the best in the world, or the most expensive (or cheapest), or the most au courant in style, or that complements the color of their eyes. The reasons for wanting a sweater are almost infinite. Basically, we want a sweater because we think it will make us happier. Miswanting occurs when we discover that what we wanted did not make us happy.
Choosing is something different. Once we decide what sweater we want, we must choose among a vast array of options that fit the bill. Will it be the blue cashmere sweater with the Armani label and the $1,000 price tab? Or the blue wool from Land's End for $49? Both will keep us warm and accent our eye color (if that's what we wanted), but if we're on a limited budget, the latter is a wiser choice than the former."
What does this have to do with the timeshare industry and the timeshare product, particularly when the heat index today is going to be 107 degrees? Very simple; people want a vacation (after all, that is what a timeshare is for) because it makes them happy. Choosing which is where the fun begins.
Traditional timeshare salespersons have been taught this on a simple level...you (the customer) simply has to choose which vacation style makes you happier...spending money on a hotel or spending money on a timeshare.
I think the industry as a whole could and should do a lot better. Having timeshares available to consumers at their local travel agency, or online at any of a dozen travel sites or (wait for it) as a choice at a travel expo would move the timeshare product to the mainstream and forever bury the misconception that "timeshare is not a sought after product." Vacations are a sought after product/service/experience and one that brings happiness. It is high time that the timeshare industry wakes up and realizes that timeshares can indeed be a sought after product/service/experience that brings happiness.
Stay tuned for the first part of the proof later this year.