Saturday, February 23, 2013

Need A Reminder?

Earlier this month, I strongly urged all timeshare owners; new and existing, to have all of their timeshare documentation reviewed by a timeshare savvy attorney.

Need a reminder as to why this is so important?  Check this story out:

Need a referral?  Drop me an e-mail.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Celebration/Festiva/RCI Continued

Well, it seems that the previous blog has received so many replies and updates, that some browsers, mine included, were not showing all the updates.

If you are not able to see all the comments, try clicking "Load More."  If that does not work (and it didn't work for me), try another browser.

Once I switched from Internet Explorer to Safari, I was able to click on the "Load More" link and everything showed up.

Feel free to comment either on the old thread or on this one...I'm monitoring both closely.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Demanding More From Timeshare Resorts

I heard today from a new owner who was frustrated.  He had purchased at Island One Resorts more than three months ago, but hadn't received anything from either the resort or the exchange company.  Nothing had been processed and he had no access to any benefits.

This is not, unfortunately, unusual.  It was routine at the last timeshare resort that I worked at for the paperwork to sit, unprocessed for 5 or 6 months, even though the owner had paid a full downpayment, or in many cases, paid in full, including RCI membership fees.

In addition to not being fair...something which everyone, including my mother tells me was never promised to me...this strikes me as being just plain wrong.

The timeshare owner has 14 days or less, depending on local laws, to cancel or rescind the timeshare purchase.  We all know this isn't really enough time to properly digest and comprehend everything, but that's an issue that will be covered in April in an exciting, new initiative I'm proposing.

Shouldn't the timeshare resort be held to the same time period?  It's time for timeshare owners to start demanding more rather than sitting by and letting things be as they always have been.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Box, What Box?

Lately I've been reading and writing about the wonders of marketing partnerships as they relate to timeshares. I believe that in one of my recent columns I was talking about tying timeshares into products that "fit"; such as suitcase retailers, ski shops, etc.

In reality, what you need to do is design your own potential owner base by partnering with those entities that mirror what you want your owner base to look like. Sound confusing? It's simple.

Do you want your owner base to have similar lifestyles, habits, income, etc. to yourself? Great (or not so great). What do you do for fun? Where do you shop? How do you entertain? With whom do you associate?

Example. I'm from Chicago. There is a wonderful, upscale accessory and home furnishings store headquartered in Chicago. They've been in existence for more than 30 years I believe, and I would venture to say that they have done extensive market and psychographic research to determine exactly who their customer is. I'll lay you odds, that store's customer is timeshare's customer.

So what is a marketer to do? Think outside the box. You've heard me say it again and again and again… JUST BECAUSE IT HASN'T BEEN DONE BEFORE IS EXACTLY THE REASON TO GO AFTER IT. Call their marketing department. Make some inquiries. Ask. You never know until you ask.

There are three things that stop most people in the timeshare industry from thinking outside the box and if you fall into this category, I will warn you now you will not be happy with me:

1)       Fear of the unknown
2)       General laziness
3)       Not enough belief in your own product

I'll spare you a lecture on the first two… most of my columns address these. But the third is greatly overlooked. If you don't believe in your own product, you will be less likely to tell others about it. Just like a salesperson that truly does not believe in timeshare and suffers low sales because of it, if you do not believe in your own product, you are defeated before you even start.

Marketers in general have long been guilty of focusing on the marketing rather than the product. How much do you know about your own product? How much do you believe in the product? If you had to go out and give a non-sales presentation about timeshare to the general public, what would you say? What would you know? Would you come across as enthusiastic? Do you own a timeshare of your own, or merely take the perks of the industry?

Speaking as a former salesperson/manager, I consider there to be three things essential to purchasing timeshare: a willingness and/or desire to vacation, half a working brain and a willingness and ability to spend some money. So where would you find those people? I'll bet you that some of them would be found shopping the aisles of my favorite store in Chicago.

Marketing is not a one size fits all, one try and you hit the jackpot business. No marketing source, no OPC location, no mini-vacation hits all the time. The best would probably garner a 30% success.

You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by trying something different with a small percentage of your marketing budget.