Today, its electronics…

Author: Frank Bertalli  /  Category: Tips and Tricks
One of things that have always interested me is what motivates people to do things they normally wouldn’t do. I guess that’s a good thing considering I’m in the sales incentives business. I’m always looking out for the next new thing because that will probably have something to do with MY next new thing.

Before I started ETTSI, I worked in sales in a number of industries that used sales incentives to sell their products. Back in the 80’s, I did very well selling time shares here on the beach in Daytona. We used what was called OPC’s to bring in the “Tours”. Tours were people who had been enticed to visit our welcome center. The OPC’s were people who enticed the tours to come in and they often used incentives. My interest in what motivates people brought me to decide to get into the OPC business and eventually I started ETTSI and began selling my own sales incentives products to other OPCs.

As an OPC, I used to offer dinner coupons that we obtained from local restaurants. The restaurants would give you the lowest cost meal for free if 2 people dined together. I would buy the second meal at a discount and then offer 2 meals to the tours as an incentive to come visit the time share welcome center. It seemed people would do just about anything for a free meal!

The next thing we offered was complimentary airline tickets and people went nuts! I eventually bought one of the premier airfare certificate companies, Fly Free America, and to this day it is still one of the best sales incentive programs I have going. Travel has always been a great motivator because, no matter what the economy does, people always want to go on a vacation.

A few years ago, when gas and grocery prices were sky rocketing, cash back rebate certificates became popular and we did a brisk business with them until the gas prices started to drop back down a bit and people weren’t as worried about them anymore. Now with the recent upturn in gas prices, interest in these certificates has increased again, so I find it’s a good idea to keep an ear on what people are complaining about.

Most recently there has been a huge interested in small electronics such as tablet PCs, Kindle Readers, and Netbooks. The trend in computing is smaller and more compact and people want these things but don’t really need them which makes them difficult to justify purchasing. I think this is a huge plus for selecting a great sales incentive. With these types of products, they probably don’t already have one, they don’t plan on buying one, but they would jump at the chance to get one free or at a greatly reduced price.

I have looked at hobbies, amateur sports, and other popular lifestyles trends and tried to build sales incentives around them but, even if people use the items regularly, they don’t work anywhere as well as a hot new item. What makes the incentive business tricky if figuring out what these new items will be before anyone else does.

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