Okay, where’s the motion sickness pills.
I need a handful.
Readers of this blog-logue know that I get a lot of my press perspectives from the Wall Street Journal and the cable news nets.
On this Black Friday shopping day, the WSJ posts an article complete with graphs and charts titled, “New-Home Sales Still Sluggish.”
Ahhhh… just last week the WSJ and the cable news nets talked about how much the housing market is coming back.
And then a full month ago, the story was about how new home sales are not moving as fast as predicted.
EXPERIENCE works in the House and Home category. A lot. That’s coupled with my personal passion for home décor and style.
Earlier this month, the Brookhaven Chamber of Commerce had a nice get-together at MODA Floors & Interiors new store location in Brookhaven.
MODA is a past client of mine that I worked with in retail expansion and development.
Today’s WSJ article cites stats that show this calendar year might not even be as good as last year in new home sales. Even home real estates sales are stagnant.
Just over a year ago, one of my House and Home clients that invested a lot of money in my crafting a target marketing model for their corporate brand and both U.S. and Canadian retailers, elected to follow the lead of a Washington firm that lives and dies by new home sales.
The Washington firm are the experts according to the client. They are the ones that have the "inside track" on builder and contract housing sales.
There had been a good share of turnover on the corporate marketing team.
The new comers had risen through the ranks and a good number came in out of the sales field.
God love the sales people. If they perceive that the model ain’t broke – or in need of a major overhaul -- they see no need to fix it.
See no evil… Hear no evil… speak no evil.
I will never forget this Washington financial modeling guy standing up at the podium and presenting a “refined” way of defining market groups that “would much better capitalize on the forecasted housing growth return.”
Course the corporate marketing team newcomers loved what they guy said.
Sales would come back. He would lead them down the pathway to harvest the payout.
Shoot… all that hype that EXPERIENCE talked about in terms of “Blue Sky Working Families” and “Millennial Home Cocooners albeit Rental Cocooners” was just false.
And the need to re-adapt the full scope of marketing from inventory packaging to website content to in-store customer bonding to sales dialogue re-crafting were all for naught.
All that money and time and beta tests and in-depth customer modeling was for naught.
The Washington experts were not involved. And in just three short weeks, they had built the model needed to capitalize on the great housing revival the firm was predicting.
Did EXPERIENCE not understand that the housing market – particularly new home sales – was going to hit the 2014 ground running.
The client even waved copies of the WSJ with articles saying that their number churning was right on track.
While much of the programming on HGTV is actually staged, I am the first to say that HGTV understands House and Home a bunch more than statisticians and financial geeks in DC and Wall Street. There is more programming today about remodeling and renovation than new home building and design.
As I have stated in this blog-logue and the annual Trendcast Reports, the MILLENNIALS ARE HERE.
Today’s WSJ article states that the Millennials are leaving their parent’s home and going through the rental stage. The authors of the article then state that as soon as the Millennials lease for a couple of years, then the housing market will take off running.
In some ways, the factors that drove the rapid growth of the U.S. housing market… the post-WWII manufacturing boom, the surge of young families – Mom, Dad, Two Kids, Cat and Dog, the expansion of automotive and interstates, the image change of home mortgage debt vs. home pay-offs, the shift from the rustbelt to the sunbelt… have not only run their course, but are much more likely to replaced with new change dynamics than repeat.
I am not a strong supporter of Global Warming. And as far as Climate Change is concerned… I am the first to observe that yes, the climate does change… and change… and change…
The Millennials are no longer affecting the market… they are driving it.
The House and Home market is not going away. There will still be a need for flooring, lighting, plumbing, gardening supplies and home furnishings in the future.
BUT… the market model will not be the same. The past… is long past.
The rental market demands a different perspective. Home remodeling will stream versus be start-to-finish like seen on the staged HGTV shows. Flexibility in terms of room purpose and use will expand. Millennials never knew much of a non-tech world, but they do crave it. And square footage will be less important -- no pun intended!
Many, many of my clients ranging from financial to healthcare to house & home to consumer package goods to travel-tourism-lodging are discovering that Millennials are not just a fluke.
Each year I issue the annual Trendcast Report that cites the top ten market drivers that will affect brands in the next year.
In the next few weeks, I will issue the 2015 Trendcast Report. BUT… unlike past reports, the 2015 report will be dedicated 100% to the Millennials and the depth of how they are driving the marketplace and its impact in 2015.
Brands that embrace the Millennial change will win. Brands that cling to the past will soon discover that the mirages will not survive.
And individuals who read the press about the housing marketplace need to take a Dramamine.