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Fumbled: Lesson No. 1

November 7th, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

It is unlikely that anyone one else will provide this post-election MH perspective. What did this election prove? There are many take-aways, we will focus on one. It is this.

Manufactured housing could have decided this race in either direction.

Let's see how.

There are approximately 4 million residents of HUD Code manufactured homes and pre-HUD Code mobile homes living in land lease communities. There are another 15+/- million living in our industry's homes located outside of land lease communities. We have perhaps 250,000 who work in our industry.

In the following states, by shifting enough of the votes cast, Mitt Romney would be the president-elect right now.

VA (13): O= 1,854,723 R= 1,747,386 = <107,337>

FL (29): O= 4,141,300 R=4,093,807 = <47,493>

OH (18): O= 2,672,302 R:= 2,571,539 = <100,763>

CO (9): O= 1,230,902 R= 1,119,874 = <111,028>

This election is over. But our future is not! Sometimes the lessons of defeat or missed opportunities are greater than when an easy victory is 'won.'

The time to organize our "voting block" for factory built housing, for the good of all concerned, ought to begin immediately. Look at the strong tilt that Obama enjoyed in some demographic groups. Why don't we realize that we have our own group, and we need but do what it takes to pull it together?

There is certainly the possibility that President Obama will take a page from Bill Clinton, and pivot to the center. The fiscal cliff may push that, we'll see. If grand bargains are struck between D's and R's that promote North American energy independence, a stable regulatory and tax system and thus job creation, we could still see economic growth.

But the key – Lesson Number 1 – is that we let this one slip by not Microtargeting our own customer base! We will need that customer base again in the very near term.

Let's learn that lesson and begin to apply it asap. The beauty of this is, done properly, it would also result in more sales for communities, retailers and manufacturers. It would mean more financing, more insurance sold, more products, services needed.

Lesson Number 2 is related, we need better engagement and Lesson Number 3 is building more and stronger alliances with others beyond MH.

Its Time

We had our first month down following a 13 month recovery, that followed a 13 year decline.

The time to paper over differences between camps within our industry is upon us.

The time to forge an alliance with our customer base is also long overdue.

Doing what common sense suggests above opens new opportunities and profits. It would improve our image. These thoughts all fall ought to fall into the category of a no-brainer. Look at what the RV industry has done with their GoRVing campaign and by being better aligned with their customer base. They no longer suffer as much when fuel prices go up or down.

Let's learn Lesson 1. Let's pick up that ball and run with it.

Want more political yet industry connected commentary? It is linked here.

Moving Ahead!

It would be great to see you this weekend in Iowa. I look forward to seeing many in Louisville for their Money Tree and in Tunica as well.

Let's get it together and pull together. Business building events, our associations, pro-Industry trade publishing and you. It is a combination that provides opportunities and victories for those who seek them. ##

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

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

L.A. 'Tony' Kovach, MHM - Publisher, Marketing Director and Industry Consultant
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