AINsight: Decoding ‘Owner Ready To Sell’

 - August 1, 2019, 5:23 PM

I get a kick out of the subject lines that are used daily to describe the motivation of a pre-owned business aircraft seller. After all, it is the subject line that should act as a hook to cause the recipient to click on the email and read further. Those clicks are the real gold to the sender. How many qualified prospects or buying brokers can you capture with any subject line?

I have written several articles and blogs lately that speak to what feels like a slight slowdown in sales activity. I don’t believe that we are on a cliff about to fall off and find ourselves in a downfall like prior years. The economy is rocking and confidence factors, although slightly down, are not at all in negative territory. With those factors in positive territory, what might be the reason that more email subject lines are directed to “Price Lowered,” “Must Sell,” or “Ready to Sell?”

The Owner is Ready to Sell” always gets me to chuckle. Does this mean that, in the preceding five months the broker has been advertising this airplane, the owner was really not ready to sell? Does this mean I have been putting this airplane on a market spreadsheet and unless someone was willing to over-pay for this plane, it was not really for sale?

With sales a little less brisk after several years of a hot market, the business aviation industry has recently not been tasked to be smart and willing to price the offerings correctly from the beginning. For new clients, I must first gain their utmost trust and confidence in my company’s ability to accurately assess and price the offering correctly out of the gate.

One of my core philosophies is that when first meeting a new client, I always try to be more of an eye doctor than an aircraft broker. I work to give them peripheral vision starting with our very first meeting so they can see me on their side rather than across from them. The goal, of course, is to have them look at our historical ability to capture a market and agree to allow us to be the experts in this field.

The good news is many of my industry cohorts are also very good at this exercise and offer the same opportunity for their prospects to gain the needed trust in them. Partnerships forged by these early interactions or the referral source from a prospect’s trusted friends will create the backbone of a long and positive working relationship.

These partnerships and their outcomes will keep aircraft listing email subject lines to important statements about the aircraft rather than using them to create motivating soundbites about price. It is much more exciting to say “Fresh C-Check” or “High Options Package.”

When the best we can say about an airplane is “Huge Price Reduction” or “Must Sell,” we are drawing opportunistic lookers who are not focusing on the real benefits. Chances are you will never be cheap enough for that buyer, but when we use these communiques to deliver important aircraft information, more often than not they will hit their desired click target. Words do matter!

Jay Mesinger is the CEO and Founder of Mesinger Jet Sales, an international aircraft brokerage firm. With 46 years of successfully buying and selling aircraft, Mesinger Jet Sales has a global reputation for personalized, transparent service.


Very well stated, Jay! I continually get a chuckle out of some of the subject lines. I wonder how many brokers are representing aircraft whose owner is "not yet ready to sell."