January 3, 2014 — Kicking off 2014 the other night a thought struck me during the festivities: Having been in this industry for many years I realized that the more things change in the world around us the more they seem to stay the same, at least in the Land Of Time. That thought led me to ask myself why does this have to be? Why can’t sales volume increase this year — industry wide — by say two digits, maybe even 15% or more?
So Here’s The Scoop: And I thought who in their right mind would be opposed to a 15%, 20% or 25% increase in net sales? Surely there are no developers, any level of management or reps who would be opposed to bringing home more ‘bacon’ and especially if doing so didn’t disrupt their ‘way of doing business’ and at zero costs (other than paying out more commissions on good, solid, cleaned & pressed net business)!
So with that in mind here are some suggestions to make 2014 a banner year – some are old ideas and some perhaps new – Kick ‘em around and feel free to add or delete at will – and post and/or comment below if you like.
The first one on most people’s list would be, where needed, to raise the sales guest annual income qualifications that are currently below the $59,999.99 level — especially if the current requirement is at the $39,999.99 (gross) neighborhood. Even a modest increase is surely warranted in 2014, if not long overdue.
How about a modest ‘bottom line’ price increase per ‘week’ (interval/points) sold even if that increase is only (e.g.) $500. After all, said increase will add up over the year and ‘things’ do seem to cost consumers a tad more dollars every year anyway — and despite those ‘inflationary’ increases people ALWAYS do continue to buy ‘stuff’…
And why not have a standing juicy all-cash SPIFF for any rep who sells/closes a (e.g.) four-week (or points equivalent) all-cash deal? (Naturally a portion of that SPIFF should also include the marketing reps who brought in the sales guest.) As is widely acknowledged, cash SPIFFS are always motivating anyway, now aren’t they?
Let us also remember the new owners coming on board (buying) this year. How about giving them something extra — free of charge — for (e.g.) a larger down payment? Reminds me of that sales rule whereby the more a ‘client’ puts down the stronger the commitment; and that will help lower some of those ‘kicks’ (cancellations).
Developers could also modify the ‘at will’ arrangements some have with their reps. Instead of managers firing for any reason that suits their needs maybe a policy of a ‘higher’ authority must be involved before the axe is brought down. Might save a few good reps with such a plan and it will surely instill more confidence and work security as well as save money on hiring ‘green-peas’ who will – in many cases – fail anyway.
And being that I’m a ‘full disclosure’ kind of person, and because I know of what I speak, all sales guests invited to a presentation should be given — in advance — something about ‘our’ advertising method and the reason for their invitation and for them receiving their gifts. And then they should sign their FULL acknowledgement and/or understanding of that document.
E.G. That this is a timeshare or vacation presentation that they will they be attending during their informative 90-minute tour, that they “ARE NOT REQUIRED TO PURCHASE ANYTHING” and that all that is asked of them is to have an open mind and preview the timeshare/vacation program and judge it on its merits…
Next on my list: I’m told those ‘love lines’ are still around, and if true that is astonishing. Those have always been uncalled for. They are simply a less-than-stellar method of managing any sales line and those sales centers operated in such a manner traditionally produce the lowest VPG’s in the industry.
The odd thing about these ‘love lines’ is that the very managers who seem to use and/or prefer this method are often the same ones who endlessly preach that “An Up Is An Up’!
Fine, sure don’t want to rock that boat. But if their belief is true then converting to an actual rotating ‘wheel’ for all front and back end reps (F/B, too) will create more harmony and less resentment of management and those who are ‘loved’ — and that alone is always a positive step towards increasing sales attitude, morale and more sales.
And since we’re getting crazy today how about an effective recruiting campaign for marketing and sales reps that is targeted to an educated, informed and seasoned audience of acknowledged money producing timeshare PROs?
You know, like advertising to the over 40,000+ monthly readers of ITG (Inside The Gate), many of whom are at the top of their game and seeking new opportunities? For those interested drop our ad guy Bill (firstname.lastname@example.org) a note and request our ITG Media Kit before our 5th year and 2014 rate increases soon become effective.
Add it all together — some of the changes, all the modifications and/or more — plus recruit and hire known talent who are Million Dollar + annual producers and before this year is over 2014 will go down as the breakout year to be sure!
Good Luck Out There!
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Contributing sometimes extravagant, bombastic, emotional, pompous or even pretentious writings about the timeshare industry, Scoop covers an array of industry related subjects each week including inside information, tips, scandals, interviews, forecasts as well as new (good or bad) products and services— and, of course, all the ‘Good’, the ‘Bad’ and the ‘Ugly’.
Stay tuned for what is sure to be a fun ride and check back to Timeshare Scoop du Jour each week for more of the inside scoop.