Much has been written about the differences between DIY and DIFM homeowners.
DIY, or Do-It-Yourself homeowners, purchase their own tools, shop online or at big box building product stores, and handle their own remodeling and repair projects.
If they don’t know how to do something, they often figure it out watching online tutorials.
DIFM, or Do-It-For-Me homeowners, don’t like getting their hands as dirty. They typically hire professionals for their construction, repair and remodeling needs… and want everything done right, even if it costs more.
Reaching DIFM Homeowners
While the DIY audience can be reached directly through point-of-purchase displays and in-store promotions, the DIFM audience is a bit more elusive, as they rarely set foot in those stores.
They certainly watch Home and Garden television shows, consult social media and read home-related magazines and websites; most frequently to gain inspiration and ideas, rather than to learn construction tips. In fact, they enjoy very much browsing design and decoration ideas online — for example, through photo galleries on Houzz and Pinterest. As such, your content should be adjusted with this audience in mind, with less information on “how-to” articles for example.
Partnering with Local Dealers
Another way for national marketers to reach the DIFM audience is through partnerships at the local level with growing exposure available at expanding local and regional Home Shows.
These dealers and contractor service providers are typically the primary point of contact for DIFM consumers — so it makes sense to partner with these firms — with co-op advertising, marketing support and cross promotions. In return for co-op funding, these local companies will feature your name-brand products and logos in their signage, brochures, newspaper and outdoor advertising. As a national marketer, it’s important for you to standardize your brand experience at the local level by offering booth graphics, product displays and presentation support to your home-service-provider partners.
When the target market warrants, consider staffing Home Shows with your own specialized national or field sales personnel who can train local presenters and exhibitors, or even attend the local shows as sales representatives.
Controlling the Message
Your brand’s personality and positioning shouldn’t change at the local level. Your service provider partners may prefer their tried-and-true sales messages over the latest strategies from your brand; resist this temptation, as it’s vitally important that you control how your products are represented.
You must maintain a consistent brand for your customer experience… from your national advertising all the way through to the end user. Why devote all of your efforts to “push” products professionally into distribution, while you risk the results of poorly executed “pull” promotions at the local level?
Booth graphics and marketing materials should always reflect your brand’s approved strategy and differentiated messaging. Sales training for all exhibitors will ensure that everyone adheres to the same brand promises, in the same voice.
You may be tempted to simply forego the branding experience at these local shows, but the truth is, they’re often a “necessary evil.”
Local home shows and conferences are a great way to reach the DIFM audience, and empower your national brands to cross sell and support local dealers and contractors… even if your participation is limited to a supporting role.
Kleber & Associates is a full service advertising and PR agency specializing in commercial / residential building products and construction materials.
Want to know more about the DIFM audience and Home Show marketing? Would you like to compare what you’re doing now to the industry’s best practices? At K&A, we’ve been participating at of all the key industry trade shows for some three decades, and can share with you which tactics work best and most importantly, which strategies deliver the highest ROI for your marketing investment.
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