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I am incredibly proud to work in the home building industry, and so is the entire team here at BATC. – David Siegel, BATC Executive Director
Of course, building and remodeling houses involves the technical aspects of creating a home or changing a house to fit a homeowner’s lifestyle. But it’s much more. It involves creating a very special place for people that they call home and which elicits from them tremendous emotion and passion.
I recently came across a blog which asked the question, “What does home mean to you?” The answers included words like comfort, security, love, family, community, friends, joy, peace, cozy and blissful. Equally as important, homebuilding means jobs, opportunity, income, wealth and future. Homebuilding and remodeling to a large degree drives our economy. All of us involved in this great field look at the work we do as more than just a job. We are the ones who make the words above become reality.
And yet, as we look at our state legislators, regulators and policy makers, we often see actions that don’t reflect an appreciation of our industry – of the power of home. We see costly and unnecessary regulations that make building market-rate affordable homes difficult. We see actions by cities that make creating wonderful communities challenging. And we see efforts to keep building and remodeling out of key markets. To address these challenges, BATC has identified in its strategic plan the need for a communications effort highlighting the values of our industry and what we stand for. We will begin this work as we often do, with research, so we can make informed decisions based on good data.
BATC is in the field now conducting research to help us develop a strong positive message as we pivot toward sharing with key audiences what our industry stands for. Our central goal here is to develop an overarching positive message and tagline that we can use in our broad array of communications to enhance our industry’s stature. One example is the Minnesota Nurses Association, which today advertises using the phrase, “We Put the Care in Health Care.” Another example is Education Minnesota (the teachers union), which always positions itself as fighting for kids.
This industry communications campaign will gird our broad advocacy efforts – whether lobbying at the capitol or engaging in independent expenditures on behalf of candidates who support home building and remodeling. It’s easier to achieve legislative, regulatory and media success when the industry is illuminated by the warm glow of positive public relations.
As an example, one question we asked on a recent statewide poll was whether Minnesotans felt that homebuilding must be strong for our state’s economy to be strong. A powerful 74% of Minnesotans agree. We’re off to a good start, and we can’t wait to get back the full results and begin our industry communications efforts. We’ll share more with you as we gain greater insights. And we hope that when we launch the effort, you’ll stand with us and use your communication opportunities to reinforce the impact of our industry. We don’t just create a house, we create a home, and that makes all the difference.