August 12, 2011 — If a timeshare developer is not familiar with those acronyms then they are, without a doubt, missing out on a platform that would serve them very well and allow them to generate, in real time, targeted prospects (aka: future sales guests) for pennies on the (traditional marketing) dollar….
Let’s say, for example, that a developer is into niche marketing and their ideal demographic is single males, 26 years of age, recent college grads w/a degree in computer sciences, who live in the basement of their grandparents’ home, owing $200,000 in college loans and are still virgins!
Okay, let’s get a little more serious. Instead the developer is looking for married couples in their mid 50’s who are not timeshare owners, who are empty-nesters and known travelers with a combined household annual income exceeding $70,000 and AREN’T underwater on their mortgage, have a FICO score greater than 750 and have a net worth of $275,000.
In either example the ‘corporate universe’ has embraced Mobile Media Advertising (MMA) in a big way as the newest generation and method of being able to “reach out and touch someone” (aka: a specific market). Timeshare developers would do well to place this medium in their marketing arsenal as commerce, the ‘biz’ and consumers worldwide continue to evolve.
What is happening in the MMA arena is nothing short of phenomenal. Smart marketers are cashing in big time as zillions of buyers are all carrying these new (e.g.) ‘androids’ (hand-held) devices, etc., enabling the marketing entities to reach their ideal (potential) buyers (prospects) 24/7/365 with special offers, reminders, invitations, video ‘pitches’ and so forth….
In fact, MMA has become so huge that the likes of GOOGLE just concluded its recent “Think Mobile” event in London, hosting a capacity crowd, as did TechCrunch who held its recent “Mobile First” conference on July 29th, 2011 at the ‘AOL’ auditorium in Palo Alto, CA.
And if all that doesn’t turn the proverbial light on, ring the bell or get your juices flowing then consider this little factoid. International Data Corp (IDC ‘Analyze the Future’) reported that in the final quarter of 2010, smartphones passed global PC shipments for the first time in history!
That is huge news! According to IDC, “vendors shipped a total of 100.9 million smartphones during the fourth quarter of 2010, up 87.2% from the 53.9 million smartphones shipped during 4Q09. For the full year, vendors shipped a total of 302.6 million smartphones worldwide, up 74.4% from the 173.5 million smartphones shipped in 2009.”
Déjà vu anyone? If you’ll all recall, back in the early 2000’s the general public (aka: consumers, prospects and potential buyers) was getting online in droves. It was when they began switching over from those slow, constantly crashing 14k-56-k dial-up modems to DSL and WiFi systems that an incredible marketing opportunity opened up, yet most timeshare developers did not take advantage of the online (Internet) universe.
Part of the problem, back then, was the marketing folks who insisted to their developers that the problem with marketing (and selling) online was that “it empowered the consumer” or that they couldn’t be “compliant”.
And because developers pretty much accepted those ridiculous opinions, most developers, other then spending a few bucks on a basic website, simply ‘blew it’ while their counterparts in other direct B2C selling enterprises successfully used the Internet to their marketing and selling advantages (and still do).
Another problem, and let’s be blunt, is there was and is no shortage in our industry of people in charge of marketing who do nothing more than follow a timeshare marketing process that was handed down over the decades. And ‘they’, God Bless ‘em all, are pretty much on cruise contro and somewhat clueless when it comes to actual real world marketing/advertising practices, techniques, systems, processes, procedures and education.
Lastly, when most developers reluctantly had their websites built they had IT types design what was a marketing and selling tool/system. Yet those folks had no timeshare sales and marketing backgrounds or experiences, so what the developers ended up with was a cookie cutter type website with an IT person’s ideas, approach and concepts of online marketing/selling of timeshares.
End result and moral to that story was that in most cases developers hired the wrong people to develop their online presence and their online promos failed. Yet had they brought in the Pros from within the timeshare industry who had the expertise required to build their online presence they would be in a far better position today.
What developers will do this time with MMA is of course up to them. But like the Internet, if they avoid this medium, too, hire the wrong people or simply turn their backs on the MMA niche marketing capabilities enabling them to attract highly qualified prospects for pennies on the dollar, then I for one never want to read another article or listen to another developer moan about their ‘tour’ (aka: marketing and sales) costs.
That said, I’ll go out on a limb here and forecast that what will happen is most timeshare marketing gals/guys in the ‘biz’ will tell their developers: ‘…the problem with MMA (Mobile Media Advertising) and those damn smartphones is that it empowers the consumer…’
And they’ll all just keep on with their very expensive, laborious and antiquated horse-and-buggy style marketing tactics: Clop-clop, clop-clop, clop-clop, “Pssst, you folks wanna get some free gifts?” Clop-clop, clop-clop, clop-clop, “Pssst, you folks wanna…”
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