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Posts Tagged ‘contract marketing’

Who Kicked Your Cat?

July 24th, 2014 No comments

Zig Ziglar continues to teach and inspire me, even after passing onto his eternal reward. We all encounter people, personally and professionally, whose attitude is clearly off. At such times, it is wise to be patient and to ask or reflect on Zig's question, “Who kicked your cat?”

The person doesn't even have to be a pet owner for this to apply. The cat is a metaphor for something someone cares about, and that something has been “kicked” or injured, and so the person with 'the kicked cat' isn't in a good mood! The possible causes are many, and often may have nothing to do with you.

Image-credit = biggsuccess-posted-on-mhpronews-com

Image credit = biggsuccess.

On the consulting and training sides of our operation, we are big believers in positive attitude, but also for tuning in to what the prospect is thinking or feeling. Selling isn't manipulation! At its best, selling is the noble process allowing your or a colleague to successfully engage a person to best determine the prospects needs and abilities, and then professionally guide them to the best options that fit. If you've done your job well, the customer isn't so much 'sold,' as they buy.

If the prospect or the person you are meeting or talking with is in a foul mood, think, what is the cause?

To do that professionally, you have to be focused more on them than on you. When you note that someone is in a foul or off mood, it's best to think HALTS. HALTS describes the routine causes for someone being 'off.'

  • Hungry
  • Angry
  • Lonely
  • Tired
  • Sick/Stressed

Once you discover which of these HALTS factors may be upsetting the balance for yourself or another, it is easier to address and thus get on with the tasks at hand.

people often say that motivation doesnt last well neither does bathing, which is why we recommend it daily - zig ziglar-posted-cuttingedgeblog-mhpronews-com

Photo credit, ZigZiglar.com – graphic  © 2014 by MHProNews.com.

Professionals need daily motivation. Who says? Zig Ziglar, who inspired tens of thousands to do more, including our industry's legend, Jim Clayton! We provide that motivation in articles by Ziglar himself, by thoughtful, successful professionals such as Tim Connor, or by submissions by myself or a number of others to our industry leading motivational module, our free INspirations blog.

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Still by ManufacturedHomes.com – poster © 2014 by MHProNews.com.

I've said it before, and will do so again. Let me recommend that you keep your team informed daily on their industry and on better ways to present the great stories about manufactured and modular homes! 15 minutes a day is the minimum you and your team should be on this site, and 7 minutes daily on MHLivingNews.com. At the end of a year, don't be surprised when you find that your team is doing so much more than they ever did before; and have a better 'can-do' mindset too.

FYI, when you need a corporate or association speaker, marketing, a sales coach or trainer, you can contact me at the phone or email below. If I can't help you, I'll point you to others if needed.

Your-Business-Sign

What's your best investment?
If you don't answer your career or your business, think again.
Which do you have more influence over, your business, or someone else's?

Growth happens because you invest time and resources in yourself and your people. Who says? Ask the legends, almost all of them would agree that applied knowledge is powerful and profitable. ##

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 

War, Peace, Bridges and Newsworthy Promotion!

July 17th, 2014 No comments

CNN. Fox. ABC, NBC, CBS, A&E and any network, newspaper, online or other media all have this in common, they promote! They promote themselves and they promote the products and services of others. They don't apologize for those promotions! They don't apologize for advertising themselves or others.

Tim Connor, CSP, author of 80+ books, one of our featured writers and hired by over 100 factory and other building operations said at a Wisconsin Housing Alliance (WHA) meeting that "You have to be a relentless self promoter." This is a fact for any successful business or professional!

You don't apologize for giving someone your business card, or for advertising, marketing, networking live or via social media, etc.. Successful operations and professionals do these things.

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We are the runaway #1
news, tips and views MH Professional Resource!
Thanks to our sponsors and experts,
we give away more useful info and insights
than anyone else in the Industry!

War and Peace, plus Bridge Building

Is your manufactured or modular home product, community or service a good one? Does it do what you advertise or claim? Does it benefit your customers? Then it is WRONG not to promote it, and do it well!

Guess what, we promote too. And it must be working, because we keep growing and gaining new clients while others have been shrinking, fading or dying.

There are times you have to 'go to war,' and when you do, the smart ones fight to win. Peace is better than war, when you can have peace honorably. That's true between nations and in business too.

bridging-the-gap-is-profitable-the-brdige-frees-those-otherwise-trapped-oneither-bank-the-elk-strawberry-mansion-bridge=wikicommons-poster(c)2014-mhpronews-com-

Bridges pay! You invest in the bridge, but once built, a bridge saves you time and money, and it makes you money.100s-raining-showering-down-2014-cutting-edge-blog-mhpronews- Bridges between you and your customers pay.

Bridges between you and those some might think of as rivals can pay off too. Think win-win, mutual victories and Collaboration vs. Confrontation!

Just the Facts!

We do marketing and sales training. We build websites, we know manufactured and modular homes, retailing and communities. We've won awards, and have been praised by operations of all sizes in our industry. Those are facts, and it should remind you that when YOU need to market better or sell more, you should visit LATonyKovach.com, email or call us!

Some of our clients are very public, and the results are there for all to see.

LouisvilleManufacturedHousingShow.com is a site we've built but also a show we promote! The show hires us to do the education and promotion, and we've been praised for the results, see proof on the link and chart here. As Show Chairman Ron Thomas, Sr. has said in a recent article,

We will once again use L. A. “Tony” Kovach, MHProNews.com aka
MHMarketingSalesManagement.com services to promote this year’s show. His electronic messaging works!”

MHI hired us to promote their Congress and Expo in 2014. Their result? The best attended event since 2008! See and hear the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) President and CEO, Richard “Dick” Jennison, say that and thank us for our pro-industry work, at the video linked here.

We take MH and MOD retailers and community operators who are often struggling and turn them into better marketing and sales performers! We teach a proprietary system that makes the phones ring, the doors swing and the cash register Cha-Ching!

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These 83 calls and 61 net leads came in one week.
We've had locations generate over 200 inbound
calls seeking homes in a week, at a low cost per prospect.
We then teach how to handle that call, resulting in more sales!

We do these marketing and training services on a confidential basis, NDAs are part of the deal. So the graphic shown redacts the names, but are actual results reported by computerized call tracking and a text from the business' owner to me. That same operation did less in a year, prior to our starting their program with us than they reported in this one month, shown above!

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Every professional from almost any field studies and reads, so they can learn more to earn more! You and your team should invest a minimum of 15 minutes a day on MHProNews.com. You should invest 7 minutes daily on ManufacturedHomeLivingNews.com. Not just owners, but staff should be on our site, learning more to earn more.

But at some point, you may want or need paid services. Be it B2B or B2C, talk to us, because we are proven to grow results. But fair warning! What we do is different! To get a different result, you have to be ready to change. We've innovated, and for those who see it as an investment, working together it pays off for those who put our processes to work!

Whenever you can, learn to Win Wars but also Win in Peace. Learn how to collaborate more successfully with others. Learn to bridge the gap between you and your customers, in a win-win fashion! ##

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 

“You Can Pay Me Now, or Pay Me Later”

July 10th, 2014 No comments

Every now and then, you get a marketing approach or commercial message that is seemingly 'timeless.'  One that fits that description is the Fram Oil Filter commercial, shown below, first aired in the early 1970s.

The idea behind their message is akin to the adage, "A stitch in time, saves 9." My hunch is not as many people in the U.S. mend their clothes, so perhaps we should say "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Good marketing – combined with sound sales training – are not only money making, they are also money saving.  Remember, good sales training is more than just learning how to do paper work!

Over the years, I've heard 'sales people' say and do some pretty outrageous things. They may or may not realize it, but at least some times, the business' owner or management did finally catch on to the lost sales or disastisfaction and other costs from the poor use of words.   Those costs trace directly back to a lack of the right training and motivation. 

The Wrong Words at the Wrong Time

greg-mcclanahan-posted-mhpronews-com-manufactured-modular-housing-retailer-.pngMy friend and MH colleague, Greg McClanahan wrote a fine column, "The Right Words at the Right Time." I totally agree with his thought behind that, and FYI, Greg is a successful MH Retailer out West. 

Well, just as there are the right words at the right time, so too there are wrong words at the wrong time.

I've seen the wrong words end up costing tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars, or in more serious cases, millions.  That can happen from law suits or fines, when the wrong words are used.   To help out on that, we have Nadeen Green, The Fair Housing Lady, who is an attorney share a monthly column, one of many in our Featured Article line up. We have other attorneys who informally share legal insights, all designed to prevent avoidable losses.

But it isn't just using the wrong words that results in fair housing or other charges that can cost you.  There are other forms of false, or even fraudulent statements that can cost a business. Hiring the right people, and training them to say and do the right things, truly pays.

Beyond Legal Liability

But let's set the whole topic of legal liability aside.  The wrong words, sadly, also cost you business!  The reverse is also true. The right words – in marketing and in sales – earns you business.

Professionalism pays. Invest in your people, or it will cost you.

As a proven MH marketer and sales trainer, we can honestly say, "You can pay us now, and earn more later."  

Or you can skip the marketing and training, and it will keep costing you until you make the right investment. The choice is yours, and you make it day by day, through action or inaction. ##

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 

Money Motivations

June 13th, 2014 No comments

There are many motivators in life. In sales, some pros speak of the five motivators of pride, profit, love, need and fear. A certain consultant you may know routinely uses fear tactics as a motivator, why? Because it can work. So too the other motivators, in the case of today's column, money or 'profit.'

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The 2008 Financial Meltdown, a Gift in Disguise for Manufactured Housing?

Please don't get me wrong. In an ideal world, we would have had no meltdown in 2008. But our world isn't perfect, so given that reality, the crash of the conventional housing market offers numerous prime opportunities for manufactured housing pros.

Among them is the fact that millions no longer believe that a site built house is a good 'investment.'

That said, a savvy marketer or sales guru can position a message that effectively says… "The money saved by buying our home can be used to invest, for travel, cars, charity, education, you name it!"

Profit is the common motive for why:

  • people invest,
  • or why they try to save, or why
  • they open a business and
  • they may opt for this career over another.

Even in government, money is a motivator. Bureaucratic programs often have a de facto incentive to spend all the money allocated, or they may get less funding the next year. The VA scandal reminded us that bonuses exist at the federal level, and that if staff can't earn the bonus honestly, they may "game the system" to get the money by stealth.

Quality Pays

When someone's budget is tight, there is no point in trying to push a solution the buyer can't afford. But when discretionary spending is an option, a savvy sales pro can justify a higher price through the message that "quality pays."

Resonating not Manipulating

Speaking of the customer, be it this or any sales and marketing methods, let's restate a basic premise. We are not about manipulating the customer. For some 25 years, I've preached that a deal is only a good deal if all involved benefit from it.

So why learn sales and marketing methods at all? Because some customers need to be guided in their decision, and when you see what motivates them, you are in a better position to advise and serve them.

You can get everything out of life you want, when you help enough other people get out of life what they want.” – Zig Ziglar.

The Five Motivators

In all of your sales and marketing, think about how money motivates. And think about how all of the 5 Motivators, pride, profit, love, need and fear. As you ask questions, listen and do your discovery with a customer, you will often pick up the clues that tell you which of the motivators is the best one with the prospect in front of you. ##

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 

Bombs in the Burry

May 22nd, 2014 No comments

"Hurry, hurry, hurry, bombs in the burry!" is a colloquial expression that conveys a sense of haste or urgency. A burry is a patch of burrs, or a bitter cold climate like northern Minnesota's in winter. It was MHC and RE industry legend, Sam Zell, who told some 200 MH Industry pros that we needed a greater sense of urgency, and that among the risks of 'cheap money' and QEs was that it created a diminished sense of urgency.

There are indeed times when urgency is called for – and when bombs are falling, or the cold is bitter – could certainly be among them.

But in business, when you are interacting on a big ticket item – the sale of a manufactured home, for example – one must read the signals and circumstances.

Indeed, sometimes urgency is exactly what is called for to make a deal happen. But urgency with an analytical buyer who is nowhere near the fence – much less on it – can cost you a good customer.

The successful fisherman doesn't try to set the hook before the fish has taken the bait! Fishing takes patience and discernment, when to act in haste and when to be patient.

Customers often fear a decision. There are many reasons that may be so. Once you understand them, and their circumstances, you can better help them in their buying process.

Lifetime Value

Jay Hamilton expressed a truism last year, too many in our industry are stuck in short term thinking mode. They fail to invest injim-clayton-tony-kovach-mhpronews-interview proper marketing and training. There are costs to that which are far greater than may first meet the eye.

Harvard University did a study on the Lifetime Value of Customers, and proposed a formula to calculate that value. Let's keep it simple today and say, that a happy customer is more likely to come back and send their family, friends and co-workers.

Jim Clayton in our upcoming follow up on our video interview speaks about investing and developing people. Around 80, he is still doing that today! Do you think the $1.7 billion dollar payday he made when Clayton Homes sold made investing in people and systems worthwhile?

Answer, you bet.

If you meet someone who thinks they are too smart to learn from others, remind them that billionaire Jim Clayton is still learning, still investing in people and processes that yield satisfied customers. Jim sat near the front of the room when Sam Zell spoke.

Check out part one of Jim Clayton's video. And watch for part two coming in June as a featured article. ABL = Always Be Learning!

Marketing and Training

All of this relates to issues that connect with marketing and sales training.

Pat Curran, a veteran who has spent decades in insurance and finance in MH and has seen dozens of sales operations, sent this in which makes a great point that dovetails with Jay Hamilton's.

pat-curran-inspiration-blog-mhpronews-com-

We must not set our sights too low on marketing.

Should an MHCommunity or MHRetailer be surprised that the 'get me done' customer arrives when many essentially advertise for that profile of buyer?

And when you do attract a good credit customer, are you surprised that you don't close more of them if your people are not prepared to deal with that better qualified buyer?

There are times when urgency is needed, and there are others when patience should prevail. How to identify and know the difference is a matter of training and experience!

Sam Zell's organization and Jim Clayton's both share this success key: they make the investment in developing the right people and processes. The payoff is long term success!

If you are the smallest mom and pop in the industry and have no budget to spare, at a bare minimum, you must require your people to read and study to learn and grow. If that describes you, and you are reading this, great, but then make sure your people read this 'and get it' too!

In the ideal, if you have the right kind of people and have a budget, you must invest in them!

If you have the wrong kind of people, why is that and how do you plan to solve it?

Tim Connor asks the question, how much are your lost sales costing you? We could add to that, what does it cost you to market to the least credit worthy audience?

The lowest hanging fruit is likely already on the ground, and may have worms. The best, juiciest fruit may take more effort to get, but once you do, isn't it worth it?

Everyone needs a good, decent place to live, so don't misunderstand the point. "Selling up" doesn't cost you the lowest rung on theshow-me-the-money-louisville-manufactured-housing-show-2014-posted-masthead-blog-mhpronews-.jp financial ladder. Those 'damaged credit' customers will come your way anyway. Remember, over 58% of the population has a credit score 700 or above, while only 15% have one under 600.

Marketing and selling up, along with investing in the processes that make that a successful reality, that's where the long term value is. Who says? The experts, leaders and legends in our field!

Treating all customers – and your staff – the way you'd want to be treated is how you maximize the lifetime value of everyone you meet.

If you want the better qualified customer, learn to how to market to and attract them, and then learn how to successfully interact with them to earn their business.

If you have good people, invest in them directly via training and indirectly via providing them the tools they need to be successful..

You'll be glad you did. Investing in your people and business is the safest bet you can possibly make, and the one you have the most ability to influence and control. ##

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