The Economy & Diving! And the survey says!

There is no doubt when it comes to discussions concerning the economy, there is no shortage of emotion, worldwide. Everyone seems to have an opinion and the majority of us feel very strongly about it! However, facts and feedback are needed to form an “educated” opinion and to craft a business plan for those of us who are not content to simply survive but who are determined to prosper during economic downturns.

Now first of all lets all take a look back at the basics that I’m sure you have heard many times before.

The Pareto Principle (also known as the 80-20 rule) states that, for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. A common adaption of this rule in the business sector is that 80% of your sales come from 20% of your clients. We spend much of our time trying to grow the “size” of the pyramid – win more customers — so that the 20% grows with it!

This is a correct approach but in doing so sometimes it’s easy to become distracted from listening to and paying particular attention to the customers we already have.

We recently launched a simple, non scientific survey, in our Associate Member eNewsletter and we were pleased with what our Associate Members (your divers) had to say! The questions, diver feedback and our interpretations are shown below. Please feel free to send us your comments via steve.lewis@tdisdi.com.

Now at this writing unemployment on a national basis is at 8.1% in other words that means that 91.9% of the population is working.  Keep this thought in mind as you read the statistics.

How is the economy in your region compared to the National economy?

77.43% found it to be the same or better in their respective regions. Keep the environment and the setting enjoyable and nonthreatening. Your facility should be an oasis from the troubles outside your store, a fun inviting place to spend time in.

How is the economy for you personally, compared to the National economy?

83.88% found it to be the same or better personally. That seems to be a reasonably positive outlook and one we find encouraging.

Will the economic outlook impact your diving plans for the 2009?

38.71% said No. Ask yourself, are you offering the one in three of your customers whose plans are unaffected the opportunity to carry on full steam ahead?

Will it impact your equipment purchases?

41.94% said NO! All you have to do now is identify who is “open to buy” by engaging them in conversation. Try this, “I was thinking of running a sale… what do you think I should include in it?”

Will it impact your Travel plans?

29.03% responded No.  Check out the Scuba Travel International Risk FREE program and get involved if you have not already.

Will it impact your Continuing Education plans?

54.84% said No! What courses do you have scheduled this month and next? If you are not sure what “will sell”ask your customers… they will tell you

Do you plan to dive locally?

77.42% told us the same as last year or More!  Do you have diving locally? Are you offering your customers the opportunity to dive locally?

There were two questions in the survey that we considered together. They were:

Do you have another recreational activity that will be impacted more than diving?

Do you have another recreational activity that will be impacted less than diving?

The figures for this indicated that for about six out of ten respondents diving IS the recreation that’s being impacted… but it also suggests that for that roughly 60% of the population, diving IS their favorite recreation. We’ll be doing more along these lines in future surveys, but the question from these data is, Are we encouraging our customer’s love of diving?

Tell us how much of your 2009/2010 “entertainment and recreational” budget is earmarked for dive related purchases (includes gear, training, travel etc.)

More than one in three people told us that they put aside 40 percent or more of this part of their income in order to enjoy diving. To help make sure our industry maintains or grows its share of their personal spend, let’s work at giving our customers the additional value of personal service and customer satisfaction.

How many people will you turn on to “learn to dive” this year?

What plans do you currently have to create a “learn to dive” promotion via your existing customer base? With 67.4% of respondents wanting to turn on at least 2 people to diving this appears to be an important priority with Spring officially upon us! A pool party? An evening social/ greet and meet? Dust off the play book and implement, execute and reap the benefits.

 

Two (2)         35.48%       

Three (3)         6.45%       

Four (4)         9.68%       

Five or more (5)         16.13%      

We hope you will take action on any of the opportunities before you. Are there any guarantees that it will work, of course not but one thing that we do know, if you do not try we are sure it won’t! Remember if you want to discuss or flesh out an idea or just need a confidential sounding board we are just a call or e-mail away!

Here are the raw data.

        

How is the economy in your region compared to the National economy?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

3.23%

Much Better (1)

3.23%

Better (2)

16.13%

Same (3)

54.84%

Worse (4)

19.35%

Much Worse (5)

3.23%

How is the economy for you personally, compared to the National economy?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

3.23%

Much Better (1)

6.45%

Better (2)

25.81%

Same (3)

48.39%

Worse (4)

12.90%

Much Worse (5)

3.23%

Will the economic outlook impact your diving plans for the 2009?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

3.23%

Yes (Y)

58.06%

No (N)

38.71%

Will it impact your equipment purchases?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

3.23%

Yes (Y)

54.84%

No (N)

41.94%

Will it impact your Travel plans?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

6.45%

Yes (Y)

64.52%

No (N)

29.03%

Will it impact your Continuing Education plans?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

6.45%

Yes (Y)

38.71%

No (N)

54.84%

Do you plan to dive locally?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

6.45%

More (More)

25.81%

Same (Same)

51.61%

Less (Less)

16.13%

Do you have another recreational activity that will be impacted more than diving?

 

Answer

Percentage

No answer

3.23%

Yes (Y)

29.03%

No (N)

67.74%

Do you have another recreational activity that will be impacted less than diving?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

6.45%

Yes (Y)

35.48%

No (N)

58.06%

How many people will you try to turn on to diving this year?

Answer

Percentage

No answer

32.26%

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