Wednesday, December 30, 2009


I just read an article comparing the prices of various things in 1999 and now in 2009. Did you know that it cost $4.00 to go to the top of the Empire State Building in 1999 and now it is $20.00?

Anyway, it got me thinking about timeshares and hotels.

In 1998, the average price of a hotel room in the United States was just over $111. Now, as a former timeshare salesperson I can tell you that I used to "pitch" 5% annual hotel inflation which my clients generally agreed with.

If that was the case, then the average hotel price in 2008 would have been just over $182, not including hotel tax. So what was the average hotel price in 2008? About $130. Hmmm...

And the timeshare? In 1998 the average price for a timeshare was about $12,500. In 2008? you guessed it...$20,000.

Now my point is not to diminish timeshares...I am all for timeshares...I think that they provide people with "better" accommodations and an all-around "better" vacation.

Something does need to be done about the cost though.

The first company or individual that latches onto this concept and actually DOES something not only about the high cost but the huge discrepancy between a "new" timeshare and an "old" timeshare will, in my opinion be the clear winners in the next decade.

Pssst....I have the solution...e-mail me and we'll do the right thing!

Happy New Year

To all of our fans and our clients, our sincere wishes for a happy, prosperous, healthy and smart New Year!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Good News From The Vermont Attorney General

Back in July, I did an undercover piece with WFTV here in Orlando revealing some of the nonsense that goes on at one of those despised "postcard company" presentations...the ones that lure unsuspecting timeshare owners in with promises to make "immediate offers" on their timeshare only to find out that it involves both giving up the fully-paid deed and a few thousand dollars.

A really, really, really bad thing for any consumer to do.

News came from the Vermont Attorney General's office that the company in question will have to pay over $64,000 to 15 consumers and $65,000 in penalties for their practices.

This is wonderful news for consumers and I hope that other states will follow suit. I'll be featured in January on a major network segment about this and other companies.

If you want details about the Vermont case, you can access the news at http://www.atg.state.vt/.us/news/timeshare-repurchaser-settles-with-attorney-general.php

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Timeshare and Emotional Branding

I'll admit it...I am an analytical person. Not the best quality for a timeshare salesperson and one although certainly not the only reason, I am left that profession.

I've been told for years that "selling is a transfer of emotions" and I used to have week long discussions with co-workers and management where I tried my best to refute that statement. I will also admit that in some ways, I acquiested when the discussion got around to why I was driving a Miata instead of a Kia.

Then, just last week I finished a wonderful, albeit slightly outdated, book entitled "Emotional Branding" by Marc Gobe. Although the book does not ever mention timeshare, I was taken aback by his "Ten Commandments of Emotional Branding" and how the timeshare industry, for all its talk about "vacation experiences", "priceless family time" and of course "selling is a transfer of emotions" doesn't really abide by these commandments.


1. From consumers to people. Consumers buy, people live
2. From product to experience. Products fulfill needs, experiences fulfill desires.
3. From honesty to trust. Honesty is expected. Trust is engaging and intimate. It needs
to be earned.
4. From quality to preference. Quality for the right price is a given today. Preference creates
the sale.
5. From notority to aspiration. Being known does not mean that you are also loved!
6. From identity to personality. Identity is recognition. Personality is about character and
7. From function to feel. The functionality of a product is about practical or superficial
qualities only. Sensorial design is about experiences.
8. From ubiquity to presence. Ubiquity is seen. Emotional presence is felt.
9. From communication to dialogue. Communication is telling. Dialogue is sharing.
10. From service to relationship. Service is selling. Relationship is acknowledgment.

Now, think back to your last timeshare sales presentation you either attended or gave. Not very high on the emotional branding scale was it?

It seems to me that the traditional timeshare industry has a vast array of brilliant mind that they could engage to turn the industry around. Heck, even paying attention to #5 above would do wonders for consumer perception. My sincere hope is that 2010 will bring the necessary changes.

On a personal note, this is my last blog for the year...I have some projects in the works that I need to devote some time to. In the next year I'll have a revamped webpage, a new book, new speaking engagements, more major media interviews and more alliances with likeminded companies and organizations.

Best wishes to all for a happy holiday season and may 2010 bring you all health, happiness, prosperity and peace.