High selling sales tactics aren’t news to us at the TCA, potential buyers almost held captive whilst the sale representatives wear them down into purchasing timeshare accommodation that they may have never wanted in the first place. This article looks at how if anything changes have been made to the old-fashioned hard sell?
It appears over recent years, popular well-known timeshare resorts are changing their selling technics and branding the product as ‘vacation clubs’ as appose to ‘timeshare’.
Be warned, it’s still the same product but with a fresh twist. The vacation club representatives now appear more, friendly and tend to sell in a more professional, less pressurised manner. This seems to be a wise business move, as many respectable companies are trying to distance themselves from the traditional hard-sell pitches that became synonymous over the past decades in the timeshare industry. Changing the products name is also helping to attract a younger crowd, who in turn surf the net thoroughly, researching and checking reviews, for resorts and timeshare prices.
Mr. X recently attended several sales pitches to see if the world of timeshare or indeed vacation club had changed its approach when selling their product. Here Mr. X shares their findings with the TCA.
In short, the answer is that the industry is improving with its efforts of re-branding and yes, using softer selling technics, however, there is still have a long way to go. Some resort developments are using what they call a quality assurance program, allowing transparency to ensure that consumers are kept up to date about their possible purchase. Many are offering their potential clients usage of tablets to show them videos and online presentations, in hope of educating the probable buyers. On the other hand we were also were faced with the more traditional hard sell, attending a 3 to 5 hour sales pitch, pushing for the contract to be signed before been able to leave, and whilst we appreciate people are not been held, prisoner, most feel extremely intimidated and forced into signing contracts just so that they can leave, so why do companies allow this still happen? Why, because it works is the answer!
We all know that the pitches are scripted, however, all are not the same, and they have all kinds of types depending on the purchaser. Is it their first purchase, what’s their age, their circumstances and most importantly to the representative their financial status. This is where the sale representative will swoop in and sell the ‘best’ holiday experience of their lifetime. For current owners there’s another script, this is less time consuming and focuses on how they can upgrade their current package. Whichever way you look at it, all the scripts are there for one thing and one thing only, to sell.
In comparison to the ‘old’ hard selling way, today’s timeshare presentations tend to sway more to purchasing points, as appose to weeks. Mexico, for example, promotes fixed-term “right-to-use” contracts, comparable to leases that can last ten years or longer. The benefit of right-to-use programs is that there are no resale market problems, nor any inheritance or title issues. When the lease is up, the timeshare membership reverts to the developer, whilst the owner simply walks away with no further financial obligations.
Thanks to many high profile investigations, the mis-selling of timeshare has been slammed and huge fines have been issued to companies for doing so. Some of the mis-sold products involved informing timeshare owners that their purchase would be an “investment” and that it would grow in financial value, in addition to making personal promises to potential buyers about the perks and amenities which they could never fulfill.
Nowadays, the sellers tend to stick to a truer more accurate explanation. However, some crucial points are still left out, such as resale is virtually impossible and the ever-increasing cost of maintenance fees. In this industry, the sales representatives are not going to bring these points to your attention, after all every sale equals a healthy commission, who would jeopardise this if they didn’t have to.
Posted on: June 27, 2018
For more information regarding this article or assistance in any other timeshare related issues please contact the TCA on 0203 519 3808 or email: info@TimeshareConsumerAssociation.org.uk