Archive

Archive for November, 2013

Can Anyone Anywhere build the next Google?!

November 22nd, 2013 No comments

Vivek Wadhwa recently posted a column on LinkedIn with the provocative headline, Anyone, anywhere can start the next Google. Wadhwa is a “fellow” at the Arthur & Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University.  Let's review some of his thoughts before commenting.

"A common excuse that entrepreneurs make for not being able to innovate is the lack of venture capital in their region. They argue that because investors are not ready to take a risk, they can’t succeed. Policy makers all over the world make the same excuse. So did legendary Indian entrepreneur Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw in a Linkedin post about “why India can’t produce a single Apple or a Google”."

"Access to venture capital may have been a problem as recently as a decade ago, but is no longer an inhibitor. The cost of developing world-changing startups has dropped dramatically. With the exponential advances in technologies such as computing, storage, and sensors, entrepreneurs can do what only governments and big research labs could do before: solve big problems."

"When Google was founded in 1998, for example, the DEC AlphaServer 8400, a minicomputer with the same processing power the iPad enjoys today, cost close to $1 million. Storage necessitated installing a server farm and rack upon rack of hard disks. It cost millions of dollars to start a technology company. Today, anyone can buy computing power and storage for practically nothing from companies such as Amazon and Google. The iPhone 5S is more powerful than the Cray supercomputers of yesteryear—which the U.S. placed tight export restrictions on. Today we carry supercomputers in our pockets and use them to check e-mail and make phone calls every now and then."

"It cost more than a billion dollars to sequence a full human genome a decade ago. It costs less than three thousand dollars to do now. Soon it will cost less than a cup of coffee. Genome data are available from millions of people already; soon this will be in the billions. Anyone anywhere can now write computer code that compares one person’s DNA with another; learn what diseases people with similar genes have had; and analyze the correspondences between genomes and the effectiveness with which different medications or other interventions have treated a given disease."

"The same advances are happening with sensor-based devices. Sensors such as those in our iPhones cost tens of thousands of dollars a few years ago but now cost practically nothing. They are allowing us to build devices to monitor our health—so that we can prevent disease and dramatically reduce health-care costs. Entrepreneurs are building iPhone apps that act like medical assistants and detect disease; smart pills that we swallow in order to monitor our internals; and body sensors that monitor heart, brain, and body activity. Sensors are also being used to monitor soil humidity, pressure in oil pipelines, and traffic patterns. These are available to Indian entrepreneurs as readily as to scientists in U.S. research labs."

dare-to-soar-can-do-attitude-image-credit-wikicommons-poster-by-l-a-tony-kovach-posted-mhpronews-com- (1).png

"One device that I recently tested is by Alivecor. The prototype that Alivecor gave me worked with India’s $40 Aakash tablet. It provides the same information as expensive EKG machines do, and the data can be uploaded to the cloud and analyzed by software."

"An entrepreneur I know in Chile also built a water sanitization system that can help reduce the incidence of disease caused by waterborne viruses in the developing world as well as in the developed world. Alfredo Zolezzi’s $500 Plasma Water Sanitation System does what even the most expensive water sanitization systems don’t—kills 100% of the bacteria and viruses in water. This device can help save the millions of lives that are lost because of unsanitary water. It could also earn billions in revenue. Zolezzi built this with a small team in Chile—with no venture capital."

Wadhwa narrative of modern successes goes on, but you get the point.  

Millions of professionals in all industries and careers – including tens of thousands in MH – are limiting themselves through their thoughts, words and actions.

doing-something-the-same-way-youve-been-doing-it-for-ten-years-chancers-are-you-are-doing-it-wrong-charles-kettering-(c)2013-mhpronews-com-

This is what Zig Ziglar famously and insightfully called 'cooked in a squat.' 

Do you know someone doing the same things the same as they did 10 years ago?  Chances are good, they are limiting themselves when they do so! ##

PS: Check our many Exclusive and Red Hot Featured Articles for November and see the other new stories at MHLivingNews.com too.

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach
ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking:

MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090

Connect on LinkedIN:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach 

Examples of how Cross-Marketing Works!

November 17th, 2013 No comments

As regular readers and most industry pros know, manufactured housing faces unique challenges in marketing. We have a great product that is not well understood or appreciated by most of the population. We will talk another time as to the reasons why that could become a blessing in disguise for those who understand how to attract potentially millions to their offices and sales centers who have cash or good credit. But today we'll focus on how cross-marketing works, by showcasing examples of cross-marketing in action.

This month on MHProNews, we had three 'exclusives' from industry leaders featuring extensive quotes found no where else in the manufactured housing industry. ELS Chairman Sam Zell, CU Factory Built Lending's Barry Noffsinger and Skyline Home's Terry Decio each have such featured articles.

I won't say which of these was in the lead in readership early on this month. But what I will say is that Terry Decio's company did a simple act of cross marketing near the end of the first week of November, and that simple step caused his article to ROAR ahead. All they had to do was take the easy step of a short post and photo to their corporate Facebook page.

skyline-corporation-facebook-page-cup-of-coffee-with-terry-decio-posted-cutting-edge-blog-manufactured-housing-pro-news-_001.pngWe preach cross marketing periodically in Featured Articles here on MHProNews and on the Cutting Edge of Marketing and Sales blog too.

Why? Because done propertly, cross-marketing works!

We promote our featured articles, but in this example, Skyline took the simple extra step of cross-promotion on their Facebook page. Viola! That article was suddenly the #1 read column on MHProNews!

What would happen if ELS or CU Factory Built Lending did the same? Think about it, because the answer is obvious!

 

Beyond Articles, Other Living Examples of how Cross Marketing Works

The upcoming Louisville Show is another example of cross-marketing. Everyone in the mix does some degree of promotion. The show does promotion of its own too, using mailers, along with banner ads on our website that look like the one below.

But what if everyone involved in the show could step up their cross-marketing game? What if everyone would cross post the Louisville Show or a show related article on MHProNews, as Skyline did on the interview with Terry Decio, linked above.

Louisville-Banner-show-me-the-money

Cross-posting links the Louisville Show website or to articles on MHProNews would obviously boost the show! The more pros who attend the show, the more all involved benefit.

It's a no-brainer.

Subtle Cross-Marketing

Most savvy players already send out invites for people to come to their specific booth or display. But why don't more take the extra step of emailing out a link to the FREE Business Building "Show Me the Money!" Seminars? Or emailing out a reminder about the networking mixer that KMHI and MHI are co-hosting at the Show?

Sometimes when you spotlight something on someone else's website, you draw a different and deeper kind of interest in what you do and offer. This is one of many ways that cross-marketing works.

Boosting the Industry Boosts You Too

manufactured-home-living-news-sharp-ipad-.jpgThe rising tide raises all boats. That's the simple yet powerful concept behind ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com. We use that here on MHProNews as well. Because cross-marketing works.

You have scores of tools online (and off…) to advance your career, your location and company.

As Tax Time Looms, Remember This Tip!

Want to lower your taxes for 2013 and boost your business for 2014? Then remember, have your accountant confirm that your advertising dollars are a tax deduction!

Invest in what will grow your business. Make cross-marketing part of that plan. Call or email when you are ready to advance your location or operation to the next level of marketing or sales success. ##

PS: Check our many Exclusive and Red Hot Featured Articles for November and see the other new stories at MHLivingNews.com too.

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach
ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking:

MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090

Connect on LinkedIN:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach 

7 Steps to Success

November 10th, 2013 No comments

Want to advance your performance, or that of your team? Then you've come to the right place today!

All success is a matter of systems that are grounded in a set of principles. The proper principles are thus a foundation for any success system you may opt to pursue.

We have a number of secret and less than secret 'weapons' we use in our marketing, sales, management consulting work. There is nothing particularly new about the 7 Habits of Highly Successful People since Stephen Covey first published it, save the fact that it needs to be more broadly understood and applied. This is particularly true for organizations in our industry.

3d_man_with_check_mark-free-digital-photos-net--posted-mhpronews-.jpgLet's take a quick tour, in part courtesy of a summary from Wikipedia  – with some added emphasis of the 7 Habits – and you will see why these principles truly are 7 Steps to Success.

The 7 Habits

The book first introduces the concept of Paradigm Shiftand prepares the reader for a change in mindset. It helps the reader understand that there exists a different perspective, a viewpoint that may be different from his or her own and asserts that two people can see the same thing and yet differ with each other. Once the reader is prepared for this, it introduces the seven habits, in a proper order.

Each chapter is dedicated to one of the habits, which are represented by the following imperatives:brain-success-free-digital-photos-net--posted-mhpronews-.jpg

Independence.

The First Three Habits surround moving from dependence to independence(i.e., self-mastery):

  • Habit 1: Be Proactive

Take initiative in life by realizing that your decisions (and how they align with life's principles) are the primary determining factor for effectiveness in your life. Take responsibility for your choices and the consequences that follow.

  • Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind

Self-discover and clarify your deeply important character values and life goals. Envision the ideal characteristics for each of your various roles and relationships in life.

  • Habit 3: Put First Things First

A manager must manage his own person. Personally. And managers should implement activities that aim to reach the second habit. Covey says that rule two is the mental creation; rule three is the physical creation.Business_man_climbing_stairs._3d_rendered_illustration-free-digital-photos-net--posted-mhpronews-.jpg

Interdependence.

The next three have to do with Interdependence (i.e., working with others):

  • Habit 4: Think Win-Win

Genuinely strive for mutually beneficial solutions or agreements in your relationships. Value and respect people by understanding a "win" for all is ultimately a better long-term resolution than if only one person in the situation had got his way.

  • Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood

Use empathic listening to be genuinely influenced by a person, which compels them to reciprocate the listening and take an open mind to being influenced by you. This creates an atmosphere of caring, and positive problem solving.

  • Habit 6: Synergize

Combine the strengths of people through positive teamwork, so as to achieve goals no one person could have done alone.

Continuous Improvement.

The final habit is that of continuous improvement in both the personal and interpersonal spheres of influence.

  • Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw

Balance and renew your resources, energy, and health to create a sustainable, long-term, effective lifestyle. It primarily emphasizes exercise for physical renewal, prayer (meditation, yoga, etc.) and good reading for mental renewal. It also mentions service to society for spiritual renewal.

cash-bag-wikicommons--posted-mhpronews-.jpgCovey explains the "Upward Spiral" model in the sharpening the saw section.

Through our conscience, along with meaningful and consistent progress, the spiral will result in growth, change, and constant improvement. In essence, one is always attempting to integrate and master the principles outlined in The 7 Habits at progressively higher levels at each iteration. Subsequent development on any habit will render a different experience and you will learn the principles with a deeper understanding.

The Upward Spiral model consists of three parts: learn, commit, do. According to Covey, one must be increasingly educating the conscience in order to grow and develop on the upward spiral. The idea of renewal by education will propel one along the path of personal freedom, security, wisdom, and power.

Applications for Manufactured Housing Professionals and Organizations

Let's start with the three parts of the Upward Spiral. Learn. Commit. Do.

In our exclusive interview with Barry Noffsinger from CU Factory Built Lending, Barry said the following, quoting verbatim:

In my view, we have a mainstream product being promoted by an extremely beautiful industry that sometimes suffers from low self-esteem.

With our quality and affordability we should be at the first thought of every stakeholder when it comes to affordable housing options. Instead, sometimes we say yes to the first person to ask us to the prom.

For example, I hear all the time that we need financial institutions to return “to the ‘90’s” and buy deeper. My question is why? Shouldn’t we learn from history?

According to Fair Isaac, 73% of the US population has a credit score over 650. Let’s all be innovative and creative in our own little corner to move our industry from “Boutique” to “Supercenter.””

> Take the first of the 7 Habits. Be pro-active! Take responsibility for whatever your current situation is professionally and as an organization.

> Next, Begin with the End in Mind, and – for example, in the case of financing – we think sustainable lending that benefits borrower, seller and lender then…

> …we are putting First Things First and are Thinking Win-Win. I had top people from three industry lenders at a lunch table at a recent event. The big round table had perhaps 8 others beside myself seated. I asked the lenders for the benefit of all about their losses on repossessions. All agreed that they are at 50% or higher and that this was one of the factors that caused higher rates for a personal property loans. That is not win-win, that is win-lose. It is one of the factors that limits lending in our industry.

Mutual Victories will Advance MH Lending

The takeaway for the above true story is that MH Communities and MH Retailers MUST become part of the profitable solution for lenders and consumers to exit successfully without taking a big hit. That exit has to be similar to the effectiveness of Realtors in the real estate market.

Mutual Victories will reward and attract more MH Homeowners

Once we synergize with lenders, we will attract more good credit and cash customers. Rates for chattel lending will be lower and will be more sustainable. That in turn will attract more lenders to our industry.

This is how 'think win-win' and 'beginning with the end in mind' results in huge mutual victory!

This isn't just a pious idea, it is a practical, profitable and proven principle. By Seeking first to Understand, and then to be Understood, along with Synergizing with lenders, we professionally enjoyed some remarkable successes in our industry during difficult times, and the lenders involved where thrilled too. Had that pattern caught fire then, let me flatly assert we would be selling many times more homes as an industry and would do so with more consumer satisfaction and acceptance than we currently have today.

Weaving Principles into Practice

Once a person understand the basic principles of success, it is time to weave those principles into practice. The best ideas that go in-implemented are like that great recipe that never gets used in the kitchen.

dartboard-success-free-digital-photos-net-posted-mhpronews-.jpgDuring my days owning/managing a Top 100 in the U.S. retail center, now as a publisher and industry consultant, applying such principles have been keys to all that we do. No baseball player bats 1000! But if you bat .300, you are already a star, so long as solid win-win principles underscore all that you do.

Get and read the book 7 Habits of Highly Successful People. Learn the principles. Line up the talent and expertise you need, because it is often required to advance.

You may find this weekend's Masthead blog post that shares an incredible success story worth your time too.

The reason for success stories is that real life success stories remind us that if they did it, you can too. And the reason for 7 Steps to Success is to give you one of the tools that will take you from where you are to where you are could be! Think Big! Day by day, by applying proven principles, you can do it. ##

PS: Check our many Exclusive and Red Hot Featured Articles for November and see the other new stories at MHLivingNews.com too.

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach
ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking:

MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090

Connect on LinkedIN:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach 

Once is NOT Enough!

November 1st, 2013 No comments

People are funny, all of us are at different times and in our own unique ways. It pays not to take yourself too seriously! Let's take a look at a behavior that – if we took too seriously – might cause us to laugh our hearts out, because it is just too funny for words (so long as we don't take ourselves too seriously!). And that is the mistaken notion that for most things, 'once can be enough.' Really?

Now, there are some things that are indeed 'one time' events. We are born, once. Billions of people have married only once. So just as many rules have there exception, so does this rule. But remember, the exception proves the rule, but the exception isn't the rule!

To prove the rule, we eat daily, drink daily, bathe or shower routinely, brush our teeth, go to the rest room and do a host of activities on a daily or routine basis. Once is not enough. That is the rule.

Now, this is a marketing and sales focused blog. Let's apply that rule of 'once is not enough' to marketing and sales.

Do you run an ad one time, and then never advertise again?

Do you build a website once time, and then never updated it again?

Do you say something to someone one time, and expect never to have to say that teaching or example again?

Since the time we were kids, we had to learn things the 'hard way,' one step at a time, one example at a time, and then we practiced, practiced and practiced some more until we engrained i! People 'practice' law, they practice medicine. Professional athletes – even high school or college athletes – practice, practice, practice.

Once is not enough!

Does the coach give only one pep talk? Never to be repeated ever again?

Does the cheer leading squad give only one cheer, and then never do it again?

Does the religious leader preach only once?

once-is-not-enough-posted-on-mhpronews-com.jpg

Please repeat after me. “Once is not enough!”

If the poster doesn't have you rolling on the floor yet, please check your pulse or get a cup of coffee, tea, energy drink or whatever wake up beverage you prefer. 😉

Once is not enough.

Manufactured and modular housing is a wonderful product, and we showcase that amazement through numerous – and growing numbers! – of examples located at this link here. Once is not enough, we keep adding to it. Have you visited? Have you shared it with others? Did you do it…more than once?

Once is not enough!

We do websites, marketing and training. We practice what we preach, because it works! When you need the services (and believe me, with all due respect, most of you do need web, marketing and sales development services), do you pick up the phone or email to ask us for our take and fees on what you need? Do you make your marketing and sales training pay?

Because when these things are done well, it is an investment, not a cost! It pays far more dividends than any stock you can name!

But once is not enough!

You don't get motivated once, you don't train just once, you don't learn once, watch TV, listen to radio, shop or go out to dinner just once. You do these things and more, over and over.

That's a huge hint!

Profitable professionalism requires repetition, as does most things in life.

Encourage your team to read MHProNews routinely. We create this as a 'free' resource – with hundreds and hundreds of free marketing and sales tips – to get people started and 'hooked' on the need to learn more to earn more. But Reading one article, one time, is not enough!

When you hit the stage that you realize that you need more than the free level of service, then please call us. Feel free to compare what we do to what anyone else in our out of our industry does! When you are ready to update your website, or need online ads, marketing, sales coaching or training, or whatever you do, please call.

Because when you do, you may find as many do…

…that once is not enough. We have – not one – but dozens of recommendations and hundreds of endorsements via LinkedIn that keep on growing! We didn't help just one person, one time. We've helped many, often! That suggests that we can help you and your organization profit and grow too.

Start out for free. Share all the free stuff. Do it to GROW.

But when you are ready for more, please call us. If you don't get an immediate reply, call or email again!

Because once is not enough. 😉 ##

PS: Check our many Exclusive and Red Hot Featured Articles for November and see the other new stories at MHLivingNews.com too.

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach
ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com | MHProNews.com |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking:

MHC-MD.com | LATonyKovach.com | Office 863-213-4090

Connect on LinkedIN:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach