Lighting: The Customer Disconnect

Posted by Energy Wire on May 14, 2015 at 3:05 PM

Control: Consumers are demanding more control over their homes than ever before. They want lighting that's flexible enough to be tailored to their individual needs and moods, and offers more functionality than on/off.

Home Intelligence: Consumers adopting connected technology need to know that it will all work together – whether it’s their lighting, thermostat, music, TV, or security system. They want to be able to manage these aspects of their home efficiently.

A couple of weeks ago, I heard a Boston architect talk about these top trends in the future of lighting. And throughout his presentation, I kept thinking… “Are consumers ready for this revolution?”

Last year, KSV conducted qualitative interviews with consumers regarding the shopping experience for lighting. Over and over again, we heard:

“It’s so overwhelming. I don’t know where to begin.”

It’s a complex situation. On the one hand, customers want a more connected home and lifestyle. According to Accenture, more than two-thirds of them plan to buy connected technology for their homes by 2019.

On the other hand, the shopping experience is so overwhelming that interested customers aren't taking action. In many cases, there’s a disconnect between the customer’s idea and their experience.

The problem is that while technology evolves to meet the customer demands, it's also getting more complex. How do we break through what is already seen as an overwhelming experience?

It starts with a personalized message. (You may be thinking, this is the answer to everything. And you’re right.) In this instance, I’m talking about selling the right product benefits to the right customer.

In our newest E.E. consumer research on homeowners, we saw a stark difference in the values of smart technology.

For example, younger consumers (under the age of 45) value “control remotely” above anything else (including: family security, financial savings and home comfort).

Almost 50% of older customers (ages 45+) value financial savings the most. And interestingly enough, this group overwhelmingly described “control remotely” as giving control away. Their skepticism of the cloud and smart technology is clear. Over 50% stated they would not install smart technology all together.

Breaking through this complex lighting market starts with personalizing the message around the benefits that they actually value. It’s also about making your product benefits relatable to their every day lives.

Would it simplify the shopping experience if we…

  • Sold light bulbs in terms of room and correlating activities? Which light is best for applying makeup? (Women, you hear me.) Which light is the warmest and most soothing for a newborn’s room? Which light is best for your late-night reading lamp? Which light is best in a room where the family watches TV every night?
  • Promoted the “right” bulb near the “right” products. On the makeup aisle? With the baby essentials? Cross-promoted with brands in these categories?

KSV has more than a decade's experience communicating about energy efficiency lighting programs. Maybe we can help you. Get in touch with Lauren Bell to describe your challenges and we'll work on some solutions.

Andrea Estey / Copywriter / aestey@ksvc.com / 802.862.8261 

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