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Lessons from The Patch

The article linked below in the Patch suggests some of the reasons why manufactured housing pros – no matter who you supported in the primaries or general election – should be hopeful for positive outcomes from a Trump Presidency.

But as or more important is the fact that there are many ways to take an issue, and make it into an opportunity to favorably spotlight manufactured housing.

Please read the below before finishing this column.

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http://patch.com/florida/lakeland/print-all-new-window-thousands-protest-industry-celebrates-incoming-trump-administr

Now let’s look beyond the particular article above, and make a broader point.  Which is this: how does manufactured housing achieve greater acceptance

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L. A. “Tony’ Kovach doing an educational worksh0p for MH Industry professionals.

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When speaking at events, one of my questions to the audience might be – “Do you believe that the media impacts your sales, for good or ill?”  In reply to that question, it is normal for every hand in the room to be raised.

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Part of the long-term plan for MHProNews and MHLivingNews.com was a simple idea. Trade media – trade journals and multimedia – are a subset of the larger “mainstream media.” As such, we could influence media, as media.

Whatever you think about the mainstream media, this much is certain. Our society and culture are influenced by it. People may or may not agree with an article, news report or editorial, but there can be real value to having certain manufactured home related topics in the mainstream media.

As the publisher of the manufactured home industry’s two leading trade media sites – MHProNews.com and MHLivingNews.com – we can often become part of that mainstream media conversation in a variety of ways. Let’s look at two more examples of mainstream media picking up articles about manufactured housing.

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The Hill is a respected news site in Washington, DC. It is routinely read by Congress, those working on Capitol Hill, lobbyists and those working in federal offices. Many others from coast-to-coast follow The Hill too.

http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/economy-budget/248665-regulations-for-manufactured-home-loans

Or here is another example:

gainsvillesunmanufacturedhousingimportanttomillionslatonykovach-postedmastheadblogmanufacturedhousingindustrycommentary-mhpronews

http://www.gainesville.com/opinion/20161016/letter-important-to-millions

We strive to practice what we preach. Over the years, from major metro publications such as the Chicago Sun-Times News Group, to local or regional markets, we’ve practiced engaging with the mainstream media.

It just makes good sense.

Imagination Station

Beyond the public and our factory-built housing industry’s professionals, among those who visit MHLivingNews.com and MHProNews.com are researchers, media, investors and policy advocates. Federal officials have cited us in their research.

We have an increasing impact on the media and others who influence or make policy.

Professionals who team up with us can increase and accelerate that impact in ways that benefit their location(s).

Via our:

  • own publications, or
  • press releases that have been picked up by hundreds of mainstream media sites each time we do a release – which we did many times in the past 18 months and
  • via columns we write for the mainstream media (see examples above),

we are influencing the broader conversation with each effort.

We have routinely engaged third party experts to debunk outdated or errant ideas about manufactured homes that causes people to think anew about our industry’s homes, communities and services.

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In depth articles that feature third party experts demonstrate that manufactured homes don’t just look nice, they are a smart option for millions.

Let me state for the record that “puff pieces” and pure marketing efforts clearly have their place.

But what those efforts will oftentimes miss are the more qualified home seekers and those who influence or make policy decisions that – right-or-wrong, for-better-or-for-worse – impact out home owners, shoppers and our industry.

We have never done these efforts alone. From day one, we’ve shared multiple MH Industry Voices and viewpoints.

By tackling those nettlesome issues that hold MH back, we are promoting via truthful story telling what is necessary to make manufactured housing an ever more obvious solution to the nation’s growing affordable housing crisis.

There are a variety of ways that others – or you or your organization can – work with us.  Ways that will help businesses serve more people, more profitably. The truth well told, pays. Routinely engaging the media has a cost, but it also pays.

That’s one important lesson from the Patch.

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We must either define ourselves, or others will define us, often to your, our home owners and our great industry’s detriment.  ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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Publisher and industry consultant, L. A. “Tony” Kovach.

By L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach.

 

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