Posts Tagged ‘manufactured home sales’

2015: The Five Legged Stool for More Manufactured Home Sales

January 7th, 2015 No comments

Let's go back to basics. Let's look at the obvious things that you need to have more manufactured home (MH) sales in 2015.


  1. New homes. Used is grand, but often hard to get and costly to update. To sell more homes, you need to see, compare, inventory and sell more new MHs.

  1. Marketing. Did you know that the average credit score in the U.S. is over 700? Yep. Do you know that many site built houses are all cash sales? Yes again. Want to sell more homes in 2015? Learn to attract more customers with cash or good credit.


  1. Professional Sales Systems. If you had all the sales you wanted, you wouldn't be reading this column. Want to sell more homes? You need to make sure your sales team is made up of well trained team members. Good appliance and electronics sales people get 300 hours of professional sales training a year. How does that compare to your operation? Enough said on this bullet for now.


  1. Financing. Obviously needed! Why not learn the latest on the various plans and lenders available at the rapidly approaching Louisville Manufactured Housing Show?! Odds are good that there is more lending out there than you are using or know.


  1. Happy Customers. There is nothing more important than happy home owners. There are few things more important than building relationships between your business and other housing pros in your market. They need us, even if they don't yet know it.

Come to the Seminars – linked here – that are free to most MH pros. Come see me at booth #115 and/or on the show floor or in the Seminar room. MMHF increased space 30%, so we can accommodate the standing room only crowds of last year. Want to grow in 2015? Make these 5 legged stool basics part of your basics. Come to L'ville, you'll see what some 2,500 MH pros did in 2014. ##


Manufactured Housing Institute – Suppliers Division – Product Placement Project

October 6th, 2013 No comments

At the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) annual meeting, the Suppliers Division voted in favor of doing a creative MH industry image building project that would use Product Placement in videos.

Video is hot online. The number two search engine right behind Google is YouTube! You can find YouTube videos on seemingly countless subjects. The MHI Suppliers Division vote was a strong endorsement for using a spin-off of an idea Eddie Hicks suggested here on MHProNews some years ago.

Here are the basics of the concept:

A volunteer committee – including newly elected Suppliers Division board member L. A. 'Tony' Kovach as a point man, with support from MHI's Lois Starkey and Cheryl Beard – will reach out to state associations with the idea of identifying the following:

  • A school of performing arts (likely a college or trade school, but might be a specialized high school) for volunteers who would like experiencemanufactured-home-community-by-lake-credit-wikicommons-posted-on-mhpronews-com.jpg at doing video projects that would involve acting, filming and editing.
  • Short stories would be scripted ("story boarded") that would favorably use manufactured homes as an important element in each video.
  • Drama, humor, "reality," "news," "documentary" or other forms of story telling could all be used. The common element would be to showcase the appeal of manufactured home living in a favorable light.
  • For example, it might include a story or report set in a development or at a manufactured home land lease community, inside a real home in an appealing neighborhood.
  • Even one star communities could be showcased favorably compared to other older, low cost housing options (example, older apartments) by taking a positive spin on story telling and product placement.
  • Sponsors would be identified who would support the modest costs of the project.
  • Besides placing the videos on YouTube or a site like Vimeo, the videos would be embedded and showcased on the website for distribution and promotion.
  • A YouTube Channel would be created for this project.
  • Additional industry volunteers who would like to serve on the Product Placement Video Project committee to advance this effort would be welcome.
  • As the project advances, other MHI divisions or factory built housing industry corporate involvement would be welcome.

It should be noted that this is the start of a work in progress, and the ideas above can easily be adapted at this early stage. So NOW is the time to get involved!

By creating mutual victories for all involved, quality engaging videos could be created that would showcase our industry favorably while providing practical, real world experience for the performing artists who would volunteer. Once produced, those videos can be used for many years to come.

Should we identify more than one school, contests might be held that would award some recognition to those who did the best in some category, a manufactured housing video version of the Emmy Awards.


Who knows? Perhaps we could through a project like this fuel the career of video producers, actors or actresses!


The videos may be useful with public officials, as well as marketing and educational efforts that can sell more homes and thus the products and services that would go along with more manufactured home sales.

As noted, the concepts are in their infancy, so your input and that of others in the factory built home industry input is encouraged and welcome.

By showing people how you cook, clean, eat, live and love the same in a manufactured home as in other housing options and how you can do so with –

  • lower costs,
  • lower energy use and
  • less maintenance costs than standard housing

– we can break down some of the barriers that are currently holding our industry back.

Please feel free to contact us with your interest and support! Working together, we can make this and other good efforts happen. Thank you. ##

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

L. A. "Tony" KovachL. A. 'Tony' Kovach | |
Business and Public Marketing & Ads: B2B | B2C
Websites, Contract Marketing & Sales Training, Consulting, Speaking: | | Office 863-213-4090 

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Friends and Family

May 17th, 2013 No comments

The main manufactured housing industry users of the power of indirect marketing to sell more homes are our clients and followers. The flip side of that fact is that the vast majority of MHPros uses direct message marketing. For those in both the indirect and direct camps, tapping into the power of friends and family ought to become a must.



Back circa 1993, MCI led the charge with an early loyalty and referral program they dubbed Friends and Family. Here is a sample video commercial that promoted it.

MCI was acquired in 1998 by WorldCom, which eventually became part of Verizon in January 2006. MCI was known for their historic role in breaking the AT&T monopoly on telephony, as well as this Friends and Family marketing.

social-network-logo-posted-on-MHProNews-compngToday, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other forms of social networking are the 'friends and family' options of choice.

But don't limit yourself to just those social media tools. Think about the powerful fact shared below as you develop – or redevelop – your operation's or location's marketing!

Manufactured housing and its precursor, the pre-HUD Code 'mobile home,' has some 23 million people in the U.S. living in one of our homes. What if just 5% of those residents in the next year became 'evangelists' for manufactured housing to the extent that they would bring a family member or friend to your community, retail center or development to buy a new home?

That would be a record setting 1.15 million new manufactured home sales! It would roughly double the highest water mark ever set by our industry.

You don't have to wait for the industry at large to get together on such a concept. You can start a friends and family program all your own! Tapping the power of friends and family could put your operation, career or location into overdrive. If you need help creating a successful friends and family – or other! – marketing and sales program, send me an email or pick up the phone and call. ##

PS: Check our many Exclusive and Red Hot Featured Articles for May and see the

other new stories at too.

l-a--tony-kovachL. A. "Tony" Kovach and Spotlighting the MHLifeStyle = Industry News, Tips and Views Pros can Use

Services:B2BandB2CAds, Proven MH Marketing & Sales Systems, Websites other Industry Solutions.

Office –815-270-0500 or connect with me on Linkedin.


Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't, you're right. – Henry Ford

Progress, Status Quo and Failure

May 22nd, 2012 No comments

We all say that we want to progress or advance in sales and profits. Certainly some companies are selling more new homes in manufactured housing. That means more loans are being closed, more insurance policies are being written, so the whole range of products and services that go into every new manufactured home sales takes place.

But what makes the difference between progress, status quo and failure?

Let's look at five true-to-life examples to answer the question. While these examples are ours, they could apply to other circumstances too. So use the open mind to success, enjoy and profit.

Example of Progress:

A client not only thanked us for the work done and their significantly enhanced results, but they introduced us to another MH company. Not a 2 minute introduction, this was a 45 minute 3 way conversation.

The client heard Tony sharing an idea at a meeting. That lead to a conversation. The conversation led the firm becoming a client. This owner had an open mind. He was curious. He investigated, he listened, he acted.

He profited.

Like many of you, this man was "busy." But he wasn't too busy to learn more to earn more! He made time for what was important. That is the takeaways from this first true tale.

Examples of status quo:

This is perhaps the most common group.

Professionals all tend to run a similar path every day. You follow the same road to and from work. You do things at work similarly too. Is it any surprise when you do the same things the same way, that you keep getting the same results?

By contrast, another gent sent us a message to say thank you. He confessed he was a status quo guy for a long time. But then it happened…

The thank you was first for the insights they gained from reading at (, then later from using a specific program and process. A page long message said in part, that he had been in business for decades. He thought he "knew it all." It wasn't until he stopped to consider something new that he was able to advance.

So if you are satisfied, don't change. That is the status quo. But if you are looking for more, be open minded and ready to do more. Then, do what it takes to make that more a reality. The takeaway here is leaners are better earners.

Not every story has a happy ending.

One business owner wanted to grow. They "wanted" to advertise. They invested serious dollars in their operation. Limited on funds, they felt they had to "protect" their resources by "playing it safe." No ads, no growth. They played it so safe, their doors finally closed.

The takeaway from the above is this: the 'safe' center may look safe, but it is the center lines where you find the dead carcasses on the road.

Example of Going Backwards.

The truth is that you typically are advancing or retreating in business. Tony Kovach shared an experience with me of an owner who spoke to him at a large industry meeting. The man described how he had grown tired of all the "fights." Which fights?

"SAFE Act, Dodd-Frank, state and local regulations! I finally got sick of it all." said the owner. "I stopped trying to figure it all out." He turned, and left the meeting.

While we can sympathize, is it any surprise why the occupancy of that community owner declined after he got "tired" of all the "fights?" Note too that the same meeting produced some very motivated attendees.

This takeaway? "You don't tell the fire place, give me warmth and I'll give you wood!" You get out the heat to the measure that you thoughtfully and purposefully put in.

Some tips:

  • Be open to new ideas. The "Know it all" means you can't learn.
  • Keep the bottom line in mind. It is more important to be ready to change directions in a new, better direction than to keep following the same line day after day.
  • Reach out: to peers; network and don't be afraid to hire a professional to get your job done. You wouldn't hesitate to go to a doctor for a medial worry. Why hesitate to hire a professional to help your business?

Progress, the status quo or failure. The choices are yours.##

Posted by:
Tim Connor
Business Development and Ads Manager ( and

If your sales are ailing, call the Doctor

July 6th, 2011 No comments

It takes someone special to open and successfully operate a business.  Similarly, it takes someone special to take up the management of a company, and get or continue it on the past to customer good service, growth and profits.

So it is not surprising that such special and successful individuals may, at times, think they can manage and 'do it all themselves.'  Oh, they may want a sales, administration and support staff, or other managers in their chain of command.  But when trouble surfaces, and results are not what they need to be, what happens when the answers are not to be found in house?

What do wise and successful professionals do?

If your marketing and sales are not getting the job done, do not make excuses for yourself or for your team.  Everyone has strengths and weaknesses.  Not many of us are wearing a red cape with a big S, jump tall buildings in a single bound and are faster than a speeding bullet.

At various times, we all need a second set of eyes! We all need other people's professional talents.  We need someone willing to be objective.  A professional or expert that tells it like it is, rather than tells us what we want to hear.

Self-help books or articles can be useful.  We publish them and believe in them!  But there are also times you simply must call in an expert.

When you are ill or are suffering pain, do you try to heal yourself? Or do you go make an appointment to go to the doctor?

MD writing a prescription, classic image

You know MDs prescribe medication.
Maybe your location is giving you pain that keeps you up at night.
Why not ask a marketing and sales Doctor what you need?


Are your sales suffering?

Is your marketing bringing in the kind of credit worthy clients that third party manufactured housing lenders are ready to finance?

If you are doing self-finance or 'captive' finance, lease-to-own or other 'in house' programs, are you still suffering from a lack of sales or closed contracts?  Do you still have vacancy challenges?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions and you aren't getting it done in house, understand the value of a second set of professional eyes.  Call the necessary 'doctor.'

Let's show at a glance how important objective perspective can be.

Black iron gate against a brick wall

Black iron gate against a brick wall.
The gate looks good from this angle.


From this angle, the objects in this photo looks good.  This is how most owners or managers see their businesses.

But from this new angle, you can clearly see the rust and dust that have collected on this iron gate.


Same black iron gate agianst the brick wall.  Photo by Tony Kovch From this angle

Same black iron gate agianst the brick wall.
From this new, close up angle, the dirt and rust are clearly evident


The point is that we get used to doing things the same way, day after day.  So we may see the first angle on the gate, and completely miss the second angle needed to spot the real problems and thus treat the ailments.

We are big believers in web-based marketing here at  With good reason!  The National Association of Realtors (NAR) says 90% of home shoppers start on-line.  So many today invest in a website, and rightly so!

But stop and think.  Are you advertising ONLY on line? Think about those Realtors.  Don't they still use print ads, too?  And is your website visible?  Appealing?  Attracting the traffic you want and need?

Are you getting all the referral business you should be getting?  Do you know how to tap the referrals that years of taking good care of customers in business should be yielding to a struggling location or company?

Or let's dig deeper still.  What if you have unhappy customers.  Do you know how to take their negative energy, and turn it positive energy again?

Do you know how to then take once unhappy customers or residents, and get them to be your Raving Fans, ready to promote you to their family, friends and co-workers?

You may think you are in a marketing and sales desert.


Oasis in the desert.  T Kovach

Even in the most barren desert, careful planning and execution can create an oasis.
You may think you are in one of the toughest markets in the country.  You may be right.


But it is almost guaranteed that someone in your area is making money in the housing business!  If they are, you can, too.  If others are not, then you have that much more opportunity to earn more and grow more.  Some creative business types have taken a desert and turned in into an oasis.

In one sense, it doesn't matter if you have a 1 star or a 5 star location.  There is a marketing plan that can make almost any location in the country successful.  There is a target market in your back yard for as many stars as your location has.

Yes.  Spend time reading self-help articles and books, such as those found here at every month or in volumes like The Manufactured Housing Revolution.  Those can and do help.

If you want to be at the Cutting Edge in manufactured homes and factory-built housing marketing and sales, sooner or later, one way or another, you have to tap into cutting edge professionals.

But if your business is ailing, and you can't fix it in house, call a doctor.  The right doctor is there to support your efforts and your people.  If you don't know who to call, read through our list of writers, or just give me a ring. # #


L. A. “Tony” Kovach
To learn about award winning, record breaking results: