Focus of ARDA World 2014

Time to Get Serious about the New Generation of Timeshare Buyers

It seemed like everywhere you turned in the ARDA World Conference this year the message was clear—there's an urgency to reach the new generation of timeshare buyers. Educational sessions were rife with information about the best ways of reaching and keeping the new timeshare consumers. 
Keynote speakers like Scott Klososky, business leader, social technology and trends guru, shared their insight into how technology is effecting and changing the way we do business. Klososky stressed, “People are inundated with content today, so yours must be compelling and provide value to the consumer, or they will tune you out.” 
ARDA’s president and CEO, Howard Nusbaum, expressed his excitement to see people in the industry embrace the convention’s theme and share their expertise about reaching the next generation. Said Nusbaum, ”Learning from the best and brightest makes our industry poised to move forward together to reach the Millennial generation and continue to share why timeshare is a better way to vacation for so many travelers.”

Consumer Communications/Relations Sessions

Consumer Communications/Relations Sessions focused on topics such as: "Reaching the Next Generation of Buyers", a session that encouraged those in the business of timeshare to re-evaluate their current strategies. Discussions centered on how best to get the attention of the new generation of timeshare buyers, a generation that has grown up with technology, and is wholly absorbed in their technology devices. 
Other sessions looked at cutting edge reward and incentive programs that are shaping the future of vacation ownership, real strategies to add to social media campaigns to create consumer engagement, and how resorts are succeeding and failing when creating and implementing mobile apps for their brands.  Another important session was "Five for Twenty", which asked participants to determine the five key attributes timeshare must concentrate on in order to move the industry forward.

Keeping it Relevant

Focus on Technologies and Amenities

The session How to Keep Your Resort’s Product Relevant to the next Generation, featured technologies and amenities that make your product more desirable for new buyers. A company very committed to this is new ARDA Construction and Design Council member, Extreme Engineering.   Extreme Engineering is the largest supplier of adventure equipment to the resort and entertainment industries. This energetic company has more than one-thousand customers worldwide including famous purveyors of fun such as Disney, Cirque du Soleil and Six Flags. Other clients are NASA, Vail, One & Only Resorts and Atlantis.
Phil Wilson, Vice President of the Marketing for the northern California-based company and an ARDA Chairman’s League Member, joined ARDA’s Construction and Design Council to learn about the needs of ARDA members and to join the network of people who are committed to giving owners and members great vacation experiences. “We are extremely aware that ARDA membership is devoted to expanding their reach to Millennials and a youthful demographic. Our High Action Adventures provide fun experiences for all ages and are the perfect amenities to attract young buyers,” he said.

Resorts Leading the Way

Among the many technology sessions, one was focused on in-room technology including covered door-key technology, WiFi, internet enabled 3D television, and ways to streamline and enhance the customer experience. Starwood Resorts has jumped on this band wagon. The company appeals to the Millennials need for instant gratification by giving them the ability to check in to Starwood resorts by using their phones. Guests can check in with phone texting and without even going to the front desk.
Rumor is that Silverleaf Resorts is focusing on the new younger demographic as they move forward with their resort plans. One need only look at the resort’s website to see their direction. Their mission of commitment to value, variety, convenience and flexibility, are all important considerations to the next generation of timeshare buyers.
For more information on ARDA WORLD 2014 sessions and forums, visit
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