The Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating Northeast Business Unit Diamond Contractor Conference (MEHVAC NEBU DC Conference, for short) was held last week on November 9th and 10th at the Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket, CT. CSIpgh Vice President Brendan S. Heckler was in attendance, along with several of our Diamond Contractors, learning about all things new and exciting in the world of MEHVAC ductless systems (and maybe playing a little blackjack, too).

The conference kicked off on Wednesday with a recap of the current industry outlook. The residential ductless market has seen extraordinary growth over the past decade – averaging nearly 20% growth year over year. MEHVAC currently occupies approximately 35% of the market, and they have no plans of slowing down. As Antonio Brown might say, “Business is booming!”

Looking forward to 2017 and beyond, Mitsubishi has ambitious plans to outpace market growth and increase their footprint in the industry, with a particular focus on the new home construction business.  Currently, this is an untapped market for residential ductless systems, and MEHVAC is rolling out an awareness building campaign among new home builders to capitalize on this opportunity. This enthusiastic goal was well-received among the contractors in attendance, many of whom have made installation of ductless systems their life’s work.

Of course, the success of MEHVAC is mutually dependent upon the continued success of their Diamond Contractors. Mitsubishi discussed plans to support growth by nurturing relationships with their existing channel partners, rather than simply increase the number of DCs in the market. In addition to spending millions of dollars in advertising, one of the biggest support functions provided by MEHVAC is lead management. Currently, nearly 85% of leads turn into MEHVAC sales – this statistic should surely make every contractor offering MEHVAC smile and see dollar signs!

During one of Thursday’s Breakout Sessions, Mitsubishi’s Patty Gillette and Carney Daley discussed lead management in further detail.  MEHVAC does a lot of the heavy lifting when it comes to acquiring leads, and so it is up to each Diamond Contractor to capture those leads and turn them into sales. Carney and Patty discussed numerous ways to ensure that a customer is ‘wow-ed’ from the beginning to the end of the buying cycle. A happy customer becomes a brand advocate, so focusing on customer satisfaction is surefire to pay future dividends for both contractors and MEHVAC alike.

Mike Cappuccio also led a breakout session, focusing on the application of ductless systems. He noted the importance of providing the correct solution to the customer’s problem, rather than focusing on a one-size-fits-all approach. Whether the customer is looking to retrofit an aging HVAC system, or they just need to heat a home addition, it is important to take each customer’s specific needs into consideration and provide a tailor-made solution. Oftentimes, a customer is willing to spend more money if it means that all of their needs are met.

Finally, the conference also addressed important product and control updates. One of the most sought-after improvements was the new thermostat interface, which allows a user to pair compatible M & P Series systems with their preferred thermostat, such as Nest, Xfinity, and Honeywell. Several updates were also recently made to the Kumo cloud application. These updates include scheduling improvements, initial settings for indoor units, and the ability to transfer ownership from the contractor to the homeowner.

All-in-all, the conference was a great success and a good time for all those in attendance. Diamond Contractors and Distributors alike left with a sense of accomplishment over the successes of 2016, and a feeling of excitement about things to come in 2017.

Here’s looking forward to future growth and success in Personalized Zone Comfort!