I recently met with the sales and marketing manager of a major Southern resort. He told me he didn’t believe in Facebook marketing! Didn’t believe in “assaulting” the customer with opt-in messages on his website and thought that four lines of text on the home page was more than enough….
Since he was obviously clueless about online marketing he quickly changed the subject and…
Went on to tell me how well things were going in some other areas such as an increase in bookings from third party vendors. After listening patiently to some of the good things he was doing I mention that the owner had told me the resort was losing almost 2 million dollars a year!
Somewhat taken aback that I had this information he said and I quote verbatim,
“I should not confuse top line performance with bottom line results!”
I raised a Spock-like eyebrow and he plunged into his defense…
“His hands were tied, inherited a mess, lack of funds, owner meddling and so on.”
All very likely true… But…
The fact is nothing matters, except the bottom line to most commercial enterprises BUT and it’s a big BUT he was right in one respect you can’t confuse short term income with long term sales and marketing success!
Now I can’t for a second defend his distrust of Facebook or lack of online marketing knowledge, but I can defend his statement to a point. You see the majority of managers and owners look only at cash flow when evaluating their marketing efforts. If cash flow is good then they think, the marketing must be good. If cash flow is poor then the marketing must be poor!
But that is simply not always the case!
I had a client last year tell me that our concepts were good but not producing the results he had expected in the first quarter. I asked him how the weather was during this time, his reply, “It was terrible the course was closed or unplayable for 28 days in March!”
“Do you think this may have negatively affected your results?” I inquired.
“Of course” he replied, “But it doesn’t change the fact that I am not getting the results I want!” em…..
In another case, a client’s business was down dramatically over the first six months. After several phone meetings, it was discovered that 50 lawyers had stayed at the hotel for six months as part of a major lawsuit in the area the previous year. My client had forgotten, but of course that year their marketing was “GOOD!”
The fact of the matter is it was a one-off event that will never happen again!
400 Membership Leads in 18 months
At one club in Atlanta, we generated just over 400 membership leads in 18 months. Still, the owner wasn’t happy as membership had not gone up, so in his mind, the marketing was clearly not working. I asked what their closing ratio was on the leads we had generated? He said he would check. A week later he told me the closing ratio was zero.
“That sounds odd?” I said.
“Not really”, he said, “Apparently we never called any of them!”
And if I told you how many times I have actually heard that same answer you wouldn’t believe me.
Before you can generate a significant increase in sales you need to generate a significant increase in leads
How many and how fast you can produce these leads depends on:
- Your budget,
- The time of the year,
- The quality of your offer,
- The viral power of your current customers
- The number of chimney pots in your area,
- The quality and quality of the competition,
- The available local media,
- Your personal connections and standing in the community,
- The happiness of your current customers,
- The general perception of your band,
- Your story or unique history positive or negative!
When you have the leads you need which for argument’s sake let’s say is 5,000, perfect emails of people who play golf in your market, plus another 4,000 facebook fans and 400 leads for golf outing, society or corporate play.
Then you have to have someone who can sell them. Someone with good phone skills, an upbeat attitude, and some actual sales training! Yes, there is actually training involved in taking someone with these qualities and actually turning them into a legitimate sales person.
Then, of course, there is customer service, customer experience, and perceived value.
Then there is follow up by email, by phone, by social media and even by snail mail.
Now of course none of this happens in a vacuum, outside forces from Putin to the NFL and shopping malls to your competition all affect results, not to mention the weather but this much I can tell you…
If you are not absolutely killing it with your data collection from your website, Facebook page, and viral promotions the rest doesn’t matter!
But you say, as the guy in my story did, our third party business is up massively. Yes, and it’s up because you offered them a bigger bonus (discount) for reaching certain goals. A good short-term strategy and one I have even used myself on occasion but what happens when the club down the road beats your offer and gives Mr. 3rd party an even bigger discount to push them instead of you?
My friends, you are naive if you think there is any loyalty among these third party vendors. What will happen is the vendor will shift his efforts faster than a missed 3 footer.
Where does that leave Mr. Resort marketing guy?
With a hand full of Facebook fans and a website that doesn’t collect data unless they book a tee time? Right back where he started only losing two million a year will seem like an even bigger victory!
- If you build the right email and Facebook database
- Connect with that database in the right way
- Highlight your “Unique values”
- Provide a decent product for the money
- And add at least some sales training, your business will inevitably go up!
How fast and how far it goes up will depends on your starting point and all the variables I listed at the start of this article but if you keep expanding the top line funnel, YOUR BOTTOM LINE INCOME will go up!
If you don’t follow this recipe, short-term strategies or alliances may get you through a quarter, a season or a year but you are on dangerous path…
The only way to get predictable bottom line results is to follow a proven marketing system that increases your top line sales funnel.
That puts YOU in charge of your own destiny!
And that’s what we do www.LegendaryMarketing.com
All The Best,
Andrew Wood is CEO of Legendary Marketing, a Tampa/Orland-based ad agency. He is the world’s leading expert on golf, resort, destination and real estate marketing although his successes go far beyond these core industries. The author of over 20 books including; The Golf Marketing Bible, Cunningly Clever Marketing, Selling-Outsell Everyone!, Cunningly Clever Entrepreneur and Making Your Business The One They Choose! Andrew has spoken to thousands of audiences worldwide and was the top-ranked speaker at 97.7% of the events where he spoke on sales, marketing, entrepreneurship or leadership. A pioneer in Internet marketing his creative talent, out of the box ideas and copywriting skills are at the core of his expertise. Regarded as one of the top marketing minds in the world for his ability to craft a winning strategy, generate leads and increase income!
Contact: Andrew Wood, Direct @ 1 352-266 2099