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Posts Tagged ‘principle’

Amway and Autos – Lessons in Branding, UnBranding and ReBranding for Manufactured Housing

October 13th, 2013 No comments

Perhaps the best time to write a column on branding, unbranding and rebranding is prior to the Fall Leadership forum of the National Community Council (NCC) at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). Their workshop on that topic will be one of the items yours truly plans to take in with keen interest, as it is something we deal with routinely in our marketing, sales training, website building and consulting.

The Business Dictionary defines branding like this:

“The process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumers' mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers.”

Let's begin with a fundamental principle to rapidly drive home the point for today's topic.

The value of branding a product or service is dependent in part on the perception and demand of the product or service in question.

For example, autos are in demand. Branding your car company or dealership makes sense, because Ask reports that in 2011, 12,778,885 cars, trucks, SUV and other automotive types were sold in the U.S. alone. Branding your product and/or service to grow your piece of the automotive pie in such a huge market makes perfect sense.

The Free Dictionary defines rebrand as follows:

rebrand [riːˈbrænd] – (Business / Marketing) (tr) to change or update the image of (an organization or product).

As an example, if your company's brand in automotive is suffering, you'd want to consider rebranding.

Let's imagine for a moment that an import auto company like Yugo wanted to change their image, rebranding combined with improved quality controls, marketing, service and sales training could have made the kind of sense that could have saved that automaker from 'crashing and burning' in the U.S. car market.

Almost no one in our industry (besides us and some of our select clients) grasp and use the powerful concept of parallel paths and unbranding, along with when it makes sense to use this principle.

Macmillan defines unbranding as:

Unbranded goods are not marked with a name of the company that makes them.

light-bult-with-trapped-man-credit-flickrcc-swarno-kamal-posted-cutting-edge-blog-manufactured-home-pro-news-mhpronews-.png

What if your dealership, community – or the industry at large – has an image issue? Does rebranding make the most sense? Or would a possible combination of unbranding and/or rebranding make more sense?

Before you answer, consider this fact. Manufactured housing has tumbled from having 21% of the new home starts in the last 20 years to some 8-12% in more recent years.

So rebranding in a shrinking market is like deciding to be a bigger fish in a smaller pond. Wouldn't you rather go after the large housing marketing place, by whatever strategies are necessary to get you there profitably?

Lessons from Amway and Unbranding

As an example to drive home the point, think about Amway. How many people do you know that have run out to sign up to sell or buy vitamins, home cleaning products etc. from a multi-level marketing (MLM) distributor or company?

The image of MLM in general isn't that hot and hasn't been for many years! So what does a savvy MLM distributor or company do? Answer: they teach their marketing minded distributors to avoid the company name and the marketing method in their initial contact.

In no small measure due to their dual campaign of unbranding and branding, Amway became a multi-billion dollar empire for its founders and made millions for key 'direct distributors.'

At MHC-MD.com and in part via our LATonyKovach.com – websites, marketing, training and coaching platforms – we have garnered dozens of recommendations and hundreds of endorsements by using a proper combination of branding, unbranding and rebranding, along with other proven strategies.

Which of these – branding, unbranding and re-branding – does your operation need? The answer to that question can be worth millions to you and billions to our industry. ##

PS: Check our many Exclusive and Red Hot Featured Articles for October 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 

Foreigners!

November 18th, 2012 No comments

Those who come from a 'foreign' land speak and sound differently than we do. When they learn English, it is their second language. It takes some time to learn how to communicate effectively, so that natives and foreigners understand each other.

The same principle often holds true in business.

We learn a way – "our way" – of doing business. We express or communicate that a certain way. When we hear a new way, it may sound strange, almost like a 'foreign language.'

That experience of something being foreign or different doesn't make what is new right or wrong. It means one must first seek to understand or learn the new idea, lingo and terminology. Once learned, the once foreign concept may make good sense, if properly applied.

One key to such new ideas is to approach them with an open mind. This is often easier said than done. We are used to doing something 'our way' ('my way,' etc.). But if we are unwilling to consider or try what is new, then we are limiting ourselves – perhaps robbing valuable solutions from our business – in the process.

Competition

While held in disdain by some, competition truly is a good thing. A person or a company decides to strive for excellence. Over time, they perform at a level that makes a comparable person or operation "look bad."

The fact that some in a market, arena or field do better than others is proof that other can too. As a successful man share with me, the principle of 'prove one' applies. As soon as you can accomplish a result, you've proven it can be done. Once proven, it can be refined and improved.

Trapped by old ideas

posted on mhmsmThe most common thing that holds owners, managers and professionals back is a lack of willingness to try what is new or different. So there tends to be four broad groups.

First are the leaders. By following a new path that they have tried, tested and works, these may build up an edge so wide that other competitors may never match them. Think McDonald's, Facebook or Amazon as examples.

Then there are those who watch their competitors. They see some new approach tested, they follow suit. If they work hard, they demonstrate that they can do it too.

There is a third group, often larger than the other two. This third group will in time buy into the new idea. But they do it later in the curve. As a result, they often may not benefit as much as the first two groups.

Then there is the fourth group. These are like the buggy whip manufacturer. They don't change at all or not in time. They may fail and go out of business as a result.

Manufactured housing

It is self evident that manufactured housing has gone through a cathartic experience in the last 14 years. This is a wake up call for those who remain. Some have learned to adapt and thrive. Others, may only survive.

That there are thrivers proves that the open mind to success – by embracing what at first seems foreign – you or others can advance and thrive too.

Marketing. Sales. Management. Training. Are you doing things the same old way? Are you hoping for the cavalry coming to the rescue? A different, better result without making any changes? Isn't that just wishful thinking?

Positive changes comes through an open-minded willingness to learn and do what is new. What is foreign shouldn't scare you off! This is true in online marketing. It is true in all marketing, sales and management systems.

So long as the new is ethical and positive, it ought to be embraced. History proves that sooner is better later than later!  

Speaking of foreigners

pilgrim-indian-thanksgiving-flickrcc-credit-enokson-posted-mhpronews-com-cutting-edge-blog…our ancestors or us were all foreigners here in America at one point in time.

Safe travels and enjoy Thanksgiving with those whom you hold dear. ##

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

other new stories and 'Purely Political' cartoons at MHLivingNews.com too.

l-a--tony-kovachL. A. "Tony" Kovach

MHLivingNews.com=Re-Discovering and Spotlighting the MHLifeStyle

MHProNews.comMHMSM.com = Industry News, Tips and Views Pros can Use

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

Office –815-270-0500

latonyk@gmail.com or tony@mhmsm.com

www.MHC-MD.com

http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach= connect with me on Linkedin.

http://pinterest.com/latonyk/manufactured-home-lifestyle/

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

Habit forming

June 21st, 2012 No comments

First you form your habits, then your habits form you.  This maxim is true in our personal life, and it is true in our professional life.  That includes how you approach management, marketing and sales too.  Let's see how this principle plays out in manufactured housing.

In this new economy and more rigorous regulatory environment, you have either:

  • adapted to the new situations,
  • have not,
  • or are seeking to find ways that will drive profits for your business.  
  • If you are stuck in old ways that no longer work, then that old habit is now limiting you.

We strive to practice what we preach here at MHProNews.com/MHMarketingSalesManagement.com.  We test new ideas.  We strive to use old tried and true ideas only when they still apply.

Videos are nothing new.  We have had TV available to the masses for about 60 years now.  There have been motion pictures for about a century.  What is a newer development is the ability for a firm like your to make their own video.

Here is short one we just did as an introduction video.  Take a look.  Then think about how you could do a video project that could help your firm too. The technology today makes this so much easier than even a few years ago.

 

 

Tony like's to quote a saying of G. K. Chesterton, on a theme that Zig Ziglar has touched on in his recent column on our site. The original quote is this:

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.”
 
– G. K. Chesterton

This is a paradox, so it needs a bit of commentary, that the Ziglar article linked above does nicely. Let's try to get the meaning down to a phrase. You have something worth doing, but because you are new at it, so at first you do it 'badly.' Later, as you do more of the 'thing' – whatever it is – you get better at it. You also get more comfortable doing the something new over time too. Just as a child learns in stages, so too we adults. We improve by doing!

Putting our own principles to work, here is the Updated (improved) version of the video above.

 


Let me also give you a big tip. Sometimes the slickest pieces are not the ones that connect you to your target market. Many people want GENUINE, not 'slick.'

Is there some area of your operation that you want to improve?

  • As a manufactured home community owner, could you be filling more vacant homes and sites? Do you want more happy residents that pay better as a result?
  • As a manufactured home retailer, would you like to have more sales and more happy customers, who bring you referrals so you sell even more homes?
  • As a factory builder, wouldn't you like to get more market penetration, and offer something unique to your retailers, developers and communities that would drive more sales for them, and thus for you too?
  • As a lender, insurance company or other vendors and suppliers, don't you also want to stand out from the crowd and land more business that sticks?

There is only one honest answer to questions like these: of course, yes. Who honestly wants to sell less or do worse?

So why not try something new in your business today? Why not start a new habit, starting right away?

There are many ways to learn and do something new.

You can talk to someone or read articles and books – like this one – pick up an idea and then experiment with that idea yourself. You can put someone on your payroll that does that new thing for you. Or you can outsource, which means you could learn from someone who knows, and then when you have that new thing well in hand, you can shake hands and move one without the hassles or long term commitment that comes from hiring an employee.

When you are ready for proven ways to grow your business, please take a look at our services menu, attached here. From websites, to training in management, marketing and sales, to Business to Business (B2B) advertising here on MHProNews.com or Business to Consumer (B2C) outreaches to manufactured home owners and MH Shoppers at MHLivingNews.com, come to us, first, last or in between. Give me a confidential call. I'll listen to your situation. We can tell you if we can serve you or if you need to think about someone else instead.

You see, we have a habit. We want to work with companies that we truly believe we can benefit. If you win, then we win too. When everyone in the mix benefits, that is the basis for a solid professional relationship. It is a habit worth forming. Just see what some of our clients have said or take a peek at many more letters, awards and testimonials linked here. ##

Posted for
Tim Connor, CSP
Business Development, Ad Manager & MHSpeakerTrainer.org Coordinator
MHMarketingSalesManagement.com = MHMSM.com = MHProNews.com
Factory-Built Housing's #1 Online Trade Publication (biggest and most popular)
ph 704-895-1230 email tim@mhmsm.com

21st Century Marketing and Sales

June 18th, 2012 No comments

For those or us old enough to remember, sales was often viewed by millions as something you did to someone, rather than doing something for someone. Sales was seen – and taught – as a kind of manipulation. A person or a company wanted to manipulate their way into a sale, they did it via a process. An example that comes to mind might be the time share industry. Let's take a look, because understanding this principle will be key to the much of what follows. You will see the application and power this can have for the manufactured housing industry. Don't be surprised if an "aha!" moment or two comes your way that will make you or an associate of yours some good money.

Let's start by using the time share example. You get someone into an appointment, often through a promise of a discount at a resort or some gift or a chance at a prize. You then put the prospect through a long sales processes that is virtually choreographed. "You say this, when the prospect says that." Much is scripted.

There are values to scripts and memorization. But one problem is what happens when a person goes off script? What happens when the prospect is to some degree "in the know" as to what you are going to do, as in fact began to happen in the time share Industry? Over time, you dry up your target market, because more and people realize what will happen and so they want no part of it. They either don't come, or they simply "just say no" because they don't want to be manipulated. The wrong intention kills it all.

The above example makes a few key points that at first may seem contradictory to some things we have written and said. Let's take a step back, to understand a key relationship, and then return to the point.

Marketing should set up sales with a prospect, that sums up the goal of marketing. Marketing doesn't sell, it delivers a prospect, and hopefully a steady stream of them. Once you get the prospect, sales takes over. In the modern era of CRM (Customer Relationship Management), prospects may move fluidly in and out of sales and follow up marketing, as with an email campaign to prospects and clients.

But obviously the job of sales professionals is to the MAKE a sale. Many of them!

Some MH Retailers – for example – in their haste to be "unsales-like" and not turn off a prospect, use no sales process. They let the customer wander around open, model homes, hoping they bump into the house they want and magically fall to the floor, open a checkbook and say, "sell me this one!" It can happen, but not often enough. I recall a successful retailer who went from 5 locations to 4, then 3, 2 and 1 doing this. Finally – of course – the last location closed. No system, insufficient sales, overhead far outpaced the sales which took place. They were done.

They had gone from a system, to no system. From success to failure.

But on the other end of the spectrum are those retailers who had a highly scripted process. It was much like a time share sales system in that sense. I am thinking of another example, in another market from the one above. The retailer had good product, somewhat high pricing, did a lot of marketing, had overall good locations (meaning, high traffic spots off major highways in good towns). But as the highly scripted systems became better known, guess what happened? The company I am thinking about in a good state, in better economic times than these are, went from 5 locations, to 4, to 3, then to 1 and done. Their lack of a customer-friendly process made them fail.

As in much of life, the answer is simple. The Solutions are always there if you look for it! Another example or analogy will make the point.

Imagine a professional football team that didn't practice. They had no play book. They had no process for success. How long would a team like that last? Not long! Even great players need a plan! Great players need coaching and play calling. So training is fundamental and a having a process are both critical. The same is true in selling.

Great sales talents realizes their potential precisely through training that is ongoing and routine, just as great teams keep training season after season.

Let's circle back to the top.

The sales process MUST begin with the right intention! If you are trying to manipulate someone, the intention is wrong. Over time then, the sales process that seeks to manipulate will self-destruct.

What works is having a process that is user-friendly for the sales person, and user friendly for the customer.

Now we get to a profound key! Don't sleep, don't snooze, or you will miss it!

Coach Lou Holtz said the following, in his three rules of life:

  • 1) Do what's right
  • 2) Do your best.
  • 3) Treat others the way you want to be treated.

Three questions people ask you (either openly, subconsciously, or often to themselves):

  • 1) Can I trust you?
  • 2) Are you committed?
  • 3) Do you care about me?

When companies, politicians, sales professionals and others get these 6 points down, look out! Good to Great Results wills follow! And so long as such principles are put into place and set in motion for the long run, long term success will follow!

But notice how all 6 points go back to the intention. If you intend to serve, if you want to serve well, you are setting up the other 6 rules. Coach Holtz started simply with, Do What's Right. The Right Intention, the Right Training will yield the Right Results for the customer AND for the company alike!

The 21st century has more ways to communicate than we never would have dreamed about at the dawn of the 20th century. We had person to person, signs, books, newspapers and magazines 100 years ago. So telephones, radio and TV were all on the horizon a century ago. Those innovations were followed by cable, cells, satellite and finally in the 90s we saw the rise of the Internet. Today we see branches of online, with tablets, text and smartphone use, social networking and more.

We have an amazing ways to reach out and touch someone. But how we do what we do is the difference between long term sales success and eventual failure. And in the end, for a big ticket product like a modular or manufactured home, it still comes down to one on one with people.

Factory built housing is an amazing product. Imagine what would happen if you had two cars, both had the same features, but one was 25% less in price than the other. Which would sell more? All things being equal, the less expensive one, right? With the HUD Code you have entry level VOG homes, and you have more 'residential' tape and textured/finished drywall styles of construction. So you can hit a variety of price points and target markets!

Then why doesn't that make a huge difference in manufactured housing sales? Aha! Therein lies a different subject for a different time. Don't worry, we will continue this periodic series.

A closing message.

MHProNews.com is being branded as the publishing arm of what we do here at Manufactured Home Marketing Sales Management (MHMSM.com). All 3 of our web address will bring you to the same site.

That said, there is a complementarity but also a distinction between the two.

MHProNews is Industry News, Tips and Views You can Use. (c)

At MHMarketingSalesManagement.com (= MHMSM.com) we are doing the contract (think consulting or short, medium or long term outsourced) professional work for companies like yours. MHMSM is Innovation – Information – Inspiration for Industry Professionals. (c)

Think about it. You have to have news and information in order to stay current and be successful in the long run.

You also need professional development for your organization.m this might be done via associations. It can be done via the web, or live for mid-to large sized companies.

Both are essential to long term success!

Here is our link to our current services menu here.

See a copy of our business building, twice weekly emailed news updates sign up for your free emailed newsletter at this link here: MHProNews.com/newsletter

Sign up for that free email here: MHProNews.com/subscribe

And when you're ready to join the ranks of those who make more money by working smarter, not harder, gives us a call or email us. My contact info is below. Years of success in factory-built housing follow in our wake, as testimonials, statistics and letters of reference at LATonyKovach.com prove. The initial consultations are free. The results, priceless. And we mutually commit to confidentially, our process is proprietary.

When you are ready for 21st century results in marketing, sales and management, call, click or connect.##

(Editor's note: see more of Tim's columns in the Words of Wisdom and in our Feature Articles section of MHProNews.com. See our news by scrolling the center and left side columns on our home page, and keeping up with Tony Kovach's The Masthead blog.)

 

Posted for
Tim Connor
Business Development
MHProNews.com
MHMSM.com
And the new MHLivingNews.com
704-895-1230

tim@mhmsm.com

The Players

April 14th, 2012 No comments

In professional sports such as football, knowing the players and their tendencies gives your team a possible edge.

The exact same principle holds true in an industry such as manufactured housing.

Be it the players on the business to business side, or the patterns of players in the consumers seeking a home, knowing their tendencies gives you and your associates an edge.

Learn and apply this principle and you can take it to the bank. ##

Post by L. A. "Tony" Kovach
Contract Marketing and Sales services
In B2B and B2C in the manufactured housing industry.
815-270-0500
tony@mhmsm.com