February 10, 2017 — If I were to suggest that any timeshare marketing and sales operation would be underperforming if they generated a net, company-wide, year-to-date (YTD) closing ratio (CR) below 40% there would be no shortage of people in our industry claiming that I’ve lost my mind. And if I also asserted that CR would include a, net, YTD, 1-4% rescission rate (RR) then nearly everyone would demand that the authorities immediately lock me up in a padded cell because I am obviously a danger to myself and the worldwide timeshare community as well as the general public.
So Here’s The Scoop: To get really whacko, if I also insisted that any developer’s team could also produce a YTD net VPG in the $5,000 neighborhood people would also declare, at best, that I was at least non compos mentis (not of sound mind) if not downright deranged or that I must be hallucinating due to a poor diet, bad sleeping habits and the non-stop consumption of mass quantities of a unique combination of certain distilled herbs and specific grains, etc.
Well, the fact of the matter is that there was a developer’s team that without smoke, mirrors and/or ‘pitching heat’ (aka: lying) produced those very numbers; and that small, elite group of marketing and sales professionals, including management and the developer, laughed all the way to the bank wondering ‘how the other folks were doing’ (LOL).
Assuming my claims are true I would like to believe most timeshare developers would want to duplicate the process so in the spirit of wanting everyone in our industry to generate more sales while times are ‘good’ I will share with readers of Scoop du Jour how those actual sales results were achieved.
First of all there were several time-tested and proven marketing and selling principles and tactics this team incorporated and because they followed those mandatory guidelines to the ‘T’ they broke all their previous sales records.
One of those principles that made that team so successful was their uncanny ability to distinguish between a “sales-lead” Vs a “sales-prospect” and by doing so they quickly developed the knack of foreseeing and then avoiding the typical timeshare selling pitfalls that continue to be the primary cause for the high percentage of all the ‘No Thanks’ TS reps/closers (world-wide) endure at the end of each sales presentation.
As we all know, in our industry, a “sales-lead” (aka: a sales guest) is pretty much defined as any individual or couple between 25 & 80 years of age, usually with a credit card and a self-proclaimed but unverified gross annual household income in the $50,000 range – or, as some people in ‘the biz’ say – anyone with a heartbeat.
Conversely, to be a “sales-prospect” in any industry (including the Land of Time) this type of sales guest must also have a need for what is being promoted (in this case a timeshare plan), they must like the general idea of it, have the ability to use it and equally important they must have the means to afford it.
Using the “sales-prospect” formula should be obvious, and I don’t care if a company is peddling (e.g.) widgets or whatever, the end result is that “sales-prospects” are always sold in far greater numbers than “sales-leads” – something timeshare developers should consider if increased sales and lower marketing costs are important to them.
Now that may seem like plain common sense but the first concern most developers will have is how in the world would their marketing peeps find those types of “sales-prospects” without upsetting their apple cart and/or changing their current solicitation methods, etc.?
Actually the answer is pretty straight forward because the team referenced herein didn’t have to change anything their marketing folks did other than to make it absolutely clear that each invitee to a ’90-minute information get-together’ completely understood they would be attending a timeshare presentation.
And to ensure the marketing people adhered to that requirement, when the sales guests arrived at the reception area they were asked – nearly out the chute – if they were fully aware they were attending “a timeshare presentation…”
If they claimed they had no idea, etc. the sales guest was immediately turned over to a rep who took them aside, apologized for any misunderstanding, smoothed things out and then informed the invitees that they were indeed about to attend a timeshare presentation. If the sales guests declined, which rarely happened, they left – and the ‘marketing-rep(s) were penalized for not adhering to the disclosure policy.
That ‘penalty’ worked like a charm and in short order all the marketing folks fell in line because not only did the 1st offense require a hefty ‘fine’ but for repeat offenders the cost to them was yuuge that I can tell you.
Of course, at this point all the invitees who showed up at the reception area each day (and wave) were still “sales-leads” and so the next step was to separate them from the actual “sales-prospects” – the target market – that generated the nearly unbelievable STATS I mentioned. And how did they do that you ask?
Well, stay tuned because coming soon: “Broke All Sales Records” (Part 2) will arrive – wherein I amaze all the doubters because the process was simple, respected and graciously accepted by those “sales-leads”, the “sales-prospects” and including, obviously, those on the sales line. And, by the way, the marketing folks, too!
Good Luck Out There
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