Monday, September 22, 2008

Why re-invent the wheel?

One aspect of Replay's revamped strategic management plan that puzzles us is the contention that sales at Loreto Bay have been stagnant for almost a year because of the focus on construction.

As George asked, "Why?"

Why would the focus on construction take away from the focus on sales? Aren't these two totally separate functions?

As we noted in a previous blog, it appears that sales stagnated because the new strategy was haphazard and lacking in continuity.

When we bought our Casa Encantada in October 2007 the sales strategy was clear and effective. We weren't left to find our way to Loreto on our own. Then find our way to the hotel. Then wander aimlessly while trying to find a sales associate who might or might not be able to find us a model home to view. That's exactly what happened to a friend of ours who ultimately decided not to buy. He was turned off by the lack of attention. And if that had happened to us, we would have been turned off too.

The previous strategy of sales events appears to have worked quite well as hundreds of us did buy. The marketing materials including the Web site were impressive and detailed. The sales events were exciting and effective because the customer was the focus. We had one point of contact - our sales associate - who looked after our concerns and needs. That focus changed when potential buyers were shuttled from one sales associate to another - whoever happened to be "on duty" that day.

Another factor that is missing from the new sales pitch is the emphasis on sustainability and the uniqueness of the community. That was a huge draw for many of us. And still is to this day.

It may be true that Replay has inherited a slew of "skeletons in the closet" but the old sales approach isn't one of them. So why re-invent the wheel?

(This post was written last night after further reflection on Replay's new strategy for boosting cash flow. As we continue to process Bill Doyle's update, I'm sure we'll have more to say on this new turn of events.)

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