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Posts Tagged ‘sam zell’

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.

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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 

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.

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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 

Explode your manufactured housing results with personality, events and companies marketing!

May 28th, 2013 No comments

In marketing, there is theory and then there is practical reality. “Talk can be cheap,” so we'll show you tips we've done successfully for years, and yes, you can too!

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Let's jump in and get started with events, personality and organizational marketing (EPO Marketing). We will offer actual examples and each will be followed by one of 4 key tips to online "Dominate Your Market " success using EPO marketing.

Remember, no one can guarantee an unpaid top ('organic') search result every time. But when you see how often we hit page 1 on Google, you'll know deep in your gut that these tips are for real. These searches were all done late May, 2013.

As you read this, keep in mind that Search Engine Watch stated that in December of 2012, 69.1% of all searches online were done using Google. So the screen captures below are all in Google, and were all done using an iPad (yes, with search engine algorithms, that fact matters, as do so many others).

4 Tips on EPO Marketing

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1) Get and use a blog!

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As you can see from the screen capture above (the screen capture was done using Jing, a free download), we use more than one blog. Depending on the size of your operation, you should install and use at least one blog on your website. If you don't have a website, you can actually have a website built 'that is a blogging' CMS platform.

Questions? Call815-270-0500for basic, down to earth details.

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  • Use your blog the smart way. Companies and professionals are naturally tempted to hog their own digital 'stage.' Don't hog that blog stage, share it!

We share the MHProNews 'digital stage' with a wide variety of personalities, companies, organizations and associations. See some examples below.

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mhpronews-manufactured-housing-professionals-news-randy-rowe-chairman-green-courte-partners-

 

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Among the keys to our success is just that, “sharing the spotlight,” sharing the stage. You can do the same too. Make sure that what you do is a 'win'
for the one you cover as often as possible. There are exceptions to this rule, more on both of these topics below.

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3) Cover events! As much as possible, cover events that make sense for you and your firm. In manufactured housing, we cover national, regional and state meetings and events that we promote, speak at or attend.

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Notice that the yellow arrow above points to a website that MHPronews and the Louisville Show's website both pointed to, which increased that online registration page's SEO and web positioning.

Another important point to remember. As a rule, don't delete content. The fact that MHProNews has covered key manufactured housing events for years now helps us to dominate on those searches. The more you blog on a topic using 'white hat' SEO tactics (avoid black hat tactics at all costs), you will over time build up ever more authority in the eyes of Google and other search engines.

Remember, events are also about people. Showcase others in their role at events, when possible.

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When you are selling a home or a longer term commitment like a site or home lease, don't hesitate to 'give away' coverage of events. The audience you can build over time is traffic you want that makes the effort worth while.

For a retailer or community, you could cover state or county fairs, sports events, educational or entertainment events and more. Be creative! Share information about area events near your location. Over time, it will pay off in more traffic to your website, more traffic to your location and more business for you.

  • 3) As much as possible in your blogging, report facts and when earned, showcase others looking good.

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There are firms and people who develop a good reputation. Feature and focus on them as much as you can.

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  • 4) With controversial people or negative news, share it intelligently.

Bad news happens. Controversies occur, and some figures court it. Cover those intelligently. Stick with facts, vs emotion or opinions!

mhpronews-manufactured-housing-professionals-news-bradley-sherry-mcmillan-_001.png

Don't hesitate to spotlight “bad behavior” within legal and moral guidelines, even if it means some controversy for you. When in doubt, ask your attorney.

Just for Fun.

If you or your company been covered before on MHProNews, why not input your name and the words “manufactured housing” into Google. See if your name pops up on page 1 or 2 of Google on our website. (Editors Note: we use a number of URLs or web addresses, so MHProNews.com, 301 redirects to, = mhmarketingsalesmanagement.com).

EPO Marketing

EPO Marketing works. It is part of what has made MHProNews.com the runaway #1 website for manufactured housing industry trade news, well ahead of publishers who had a 20 or 30 year head start.

All of these tips – indeed, all our tips and systems – have as their foundation the belief that the professional or firm should deliver on what they promise. Give your customers exactly what your promise. Document your promises, you don't have to give more than what is in writing, but don't give them any less either.

As a bonus tip, use testimonials, like those found on MHProNews.com or on virtually every page of MHC-MD.com! Questions? Call815-270-0500for basic, down to earth details.##

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

other new stories 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