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Archive for March, 2015

People Don’t Change Unless Forced, The Day the MH Earth Stood Still…

March 31st, 2015 No comments

Do you like to watch movies? In 2008, Fox released their remake of the 1951 classic movie, the Day the Earth Stood Still. One of the key concepts in the movie is summed up in this thought, that people don’t change unless they are forced to do so. Without giving away the story’s punch line, the earth is given a pretty stern death threat from an alien race. How do the people of our planet respond? That’s the story line.

Manufactured housing has had its own death threat. This isn’t being negative, because no one reports the 5 year recovery of MH more than we do here on MHProNews.com; and no one does more pro-industry public promotion that we do on our sister site, MHLivingNews.com. But we’d be naïve if we didn’t admit that we have faced – and to some degree, still have – an existential threat as an industry.

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We are making a slow climb back up, as the chart below shows.  

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But have enough of MH pros learned the lesson?  Frankly, not yet.  

During the recent Tunica MH Show, I shared a breakfast with a pair of pros, one of whom was a younger gent who came to MH from the world of PR and media. His view of our industry was rather dark. He said we were doing the classic (bad) things that ‘aging industries often do.’

That industry newcomer and media pro is not alone in that assessment. The Atlantic reported their slant on the impending death of MH, based on their spin on the IBISWorld report from a few years ago.  Naturally, we disagree!  We work with firms day by day that are investing in their future, and are reaping the rewards of positive change.

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I’m not like those who think that only force causes change. People can and do act for good reasons, not just forced ones. That said, turn-arounds don’t just happen. They occur because people make decisions to act in a goal and solution oriented fashion.

Since the U.S. faces an affordable housing crisis, it is easy to see our potential. But that potential won’t be tapped until we learn to reach out to the broader housing market. That takes a combination of marketing and training.

Part of the answer lies in videos, and we are doing more and more of those, which can happen in tandem with those willing to invest in the future of our great industry.

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/new-homes-for-millennials-boomers-inside-mh-video-terry-decio-skyline-homes/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/an-inside-look-at-manufactured-home-living-a-builders-and-home-owners-viewpoints/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/touring-a-manufactured-home-model-home-village-and-design-center-inside-mh-video/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/jim-clayton-founder-of-clayton-homes-and-clayton-bank-inside-mh-video-interview/

http://manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/builder-wayne-hopper-compares-modern-manufactured-homes-with-conventional-construction-inside-mh-video/

In the weeks and months ahead, we’ll look at what it takes to take a location – a location(s) like yours – and do the marketing and sales steps needed to make you and other savvy players a profitable force to be reckoned with in your market(s).  The industry’s best days can lie ahead, but it won’t happen until enough pros like you make it so.  ##

latonykovach-louisiville2015-mhpronews-business-building-seminars- (1)By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

Comparing Manufactured Home Apples to Conventional Housing Apples

March 17th, 2015 1 comment

As the professionals, it is up to us to help frame the housing conversation in ways that showcase the appeal and value of modern manufactured homes.  All too often, I hear MHPros repeat things their customers are saying to them.  Don’t get me wrong, we need to LISTEN to what they have to say.  But that doesn’t mean we have to accept their viewpoint, when they have the facts out of whack.  When that happens, that suggests many pros need to step back and take a fresh look at the pro/home shopper dialogue and how it should be structured or re-framed. 

When someone is comparing a 30 year old foreclosure with a brand new MH, how is that anything but apples and oranges? 

Take a look at this new video and story, linked here.  It may help you and your team re-imagine how MH ought to be sold, so that sales will grow!

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SuperCharged Manufactured and Modular Home Marketing and Sales!  

Coming to Tunica? We will be discussing how you can Super Charge your Marketing and Sales!

MHPros from coast to coast will be there.  See why our seminar attendees and clients rate us 4 or 5 out of 5 stars.  See why one client’s trainees recently rates our user and customer friendly approach an 11, with ten being the best.  Please stop by the business building  seminars, our booth #73 or catch me among the homes or exhibits! ##

latonykovach-louisiville2015-mhpronews-business-building-seminars- (1)

By L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

Telling the Manufactured Housing Story – Telling YOUR and Your Home Owner’s stories

March 9th, 2015 No comments

We’ve been hammering away at a simple yet powerful theme. Telling the story of modern manufactured housing tale – via video, news, photos and other methods – is critical for a variety of reasons. Few are more important than the cause of raising our new home sales levels, ASAP!

First, prospective home owners are people. Duh, right? Do you think it helps to put someone like them into a video, and then have them tells others how happy they are with their home?

I wouldn’t advocate “fly over” video for just any project. But for some, the investment makes good sense. Here is an example of how the use of aerial video can create a good feeling for visitors to a website.

Interviews are a great way to communicate. Get an expert or industry personality in front of a camera, then put a microphone on or next to that person. Ask questions. Listen. See the amazing things that are said!

Showing homes should be done from time to time with more than just the home video footage itself. Do you see what a difference it makes to have the home tour ‘teed up’ with other kinds of video footage? You have this great feeling about this retailer and Adventure Homes because of the smiling, laughing faces and all the cool aerial footage mixed in for just a few moments before you have the video itself.

These videos all tell a different aspect of modern manufactured housing.  Each one tells part of our story.  We can’t just tell it once and forget it.  We have to tell it and retell it so many different ways, until the viewer has an ‘aha’ moment and ‘gets it.’

As an FYI, we are up north this week, where we will be filming more videos at multiple locations for both independent and large firms. We often drive these, because here is the amount of equipment for two guys to take when we are doing a shoot.  Imagine trying to ship all that gear and tech stuff by plane!

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When you are thinking about a video project, keep us in mind. You need a third party doing your interviews for you, otherwise, it is just a commercial. Plus, what other video guys understand MH better than we do? Who else can interview you or your customers as well?

Enough said for today. See you in Tunica later this month? We’ll be at booth #73. ##
latonykovach-louisiville2015-mhpronews-business-building-seminars- (1)By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.