Sunday, December 17, 2006
The word “branding” used to conjure up visions of a cattle drive and a sizzling imprint stamped on bovine buttocks. But somewhere along the way, the business concept of a company’s “brand” or market image evolved from a noun to a verb, and “branding” became an industry buzzword for the process of spreading one’s corporate image to other goods or services.
Many experts today say that the hospitality industry changed when major hotel brands got into the business of selling vacation ownership and interval timeshare. It is true that big names including Hilton timeshare, Hyatt timeshare, Disney timeshare, along with Marriott, Four Seasons, Starwood and others have had an enormous impact on the timeshare industry as a whole.
The presence of these cornerstone hoteliers made the idea of owning interval timeshare more familiar and more comfortable to many consumers. When big names aggressively entered the timeshare business, a struggling or less reputable timeshare company was certain to be forced out of it. And there is no disputing that a company as large and powerful as Disney timeshare or Marriott timeshare has strong lobbying power on matters of regulating and improving timeshare ownership across the board. But when it truly comes to buying a timeshare vacation property to use and enjoy, remember that there are as many opportunities to buy a fabulous resale timeshare from a company whose name you may not know as there to are to purchase a timeshare owned and branded by a famous hotelier.
Consider the timeshare company known as Bluegreen timeshare. Bluegreen is a leader in developing quality timeshare resorts and vacation ownership properties, yet their name is not necessarily a household word. As a corporation, Bluegreen is a respected builder of residential communities, along with fabulous timeshare condos and timeshare vacation resorts. Yet, many buyers new to timesharing, may not know Bluegreen’s name or realize that this successful company has sold over 54,000 residential and golf community homes in 32 states and is on Forbes’ list of “The 200 Best Small Companies” and FORTUNE’S list of “America’s 100 Fastest Growing Companies”.
Brand loyalty is wonderful. Brand loyalty often allows you to trade perks from one aspect of a company’s services to another, such as loyalty points awarded for hotel stays that can also be used at a timeshare condo. And, if you enjoy one particular hotel chain more than you do others, then automatically booking with that chain takes the guesswork out of travel planning. But when you shop for a timeshare vacation property, whether new or resale, it is a good idea to consider both brand names you know AND those names with which you might not be familiar.
Whether or not you go with a hotel branded timeshare, now is a good time to buy. There are excellent deals available in all types of timeshares and vacation clubs.