How did Febreze join the “$1 Billion Club,” noting the company’s recent success according to the Wall Street Journal? While the declension in the housing market brought a lot of home products down with it, certain small aspects of daily home life are, in fact, flourishing. Febreze has managed to prosper during a stark decline in the industry, which has some people in the field scratching their heads. What caused the trend? Some experts suggest that more people are spending more time in their homes as a way to save money; as part of the aftermath of the recession. As a result, it has become increasingly important for families to eat out less, drive less and spend less time shopping. Still, data suggests that people will splurge from time to time, just not in the same ways they used to.

Many families have started to spend their money on accessories for the home, giving reason as to why Febreze defied market trends with its profit gains. It is perfectly reasonable that a family which spends most evenings indoors will want a home to look, feel and (as we’re seeing now) smell nice. The recent movement to all things green may have played a role, as well, as Febreze has been effectively labeled as a green product; simple and clean. Regardless of what the future holds for Febreze, businesses and consumers should take note that new consumer trends are reshaping industries in unexpected ways. In light of that, we have assembled a comprehensive guide for appealing to different consumers.

Strategies to Appeal to Current and Prospective Customers
A solid customer base is the backbone of any thriving business. It’s essential that companies effectively tap into their pool of dedicated customers to identify prospective customers’ motivations and purchasing habits in order to successfully achieve market share growth. This is precisely how Febreze saw its opportunity when consumers started spending more time in their homes. Below are strategies to market home products by reaching your niche audiences, while increasing sales and market share.

Leverage Current Customers to Propel Sales
You’ve already established a strong customer base. They’ve purchased from you in the past or are current customers sustaining your sales. Now, what are you going to do to maintain them as current and future customers?

  • Instead of sending information out to customers, create a distribution channel where your customers can access your company information when and how they want.
  • Offer customer referral promotions and incentives. You can develop a club for high-value customers where they can access discounts on your products or services or retrieve monetary rewards for new customer referrals.
  • Provide ways for customers to comment about your company’s products and/or services. Research from MarketingSherpa found that 58 percent of consumers prefer Web sites with peer-written product reviews.
  • Create a Facebook business page or Facebook group where customers can interact online.

Giving your customers a voice allows them the opportunity to become influential brand evangelists.

Be at the Forefront of Emerging Demographics
Aside from your existing customer base, it’s important to be knowledgeable about emerging, lucrative demographic groups as they have the potential to alter your business. Take for example the newest generation to influence the home and commercial building products industry: the tech-savvy Millennials or Generation Y. This group is quickly becoming of first-time homebuyer age, and for those of us in the home and building industry, this is the group to watch closely. The immigrant population is another vast and influential demographic group that needs to be watched closely by our industry, the Hispanic marketplace in particular. According to an analysis of census figures released recently, racial and ethnic minorities account for a large percentage of Americans under the age of 20, a strong indicator of America’s changing makeup.

Think Strategically, Target Accordingly
Whether you’re marketing to your existing customer base or potential customers, you need to know your target audiences. Ask yourself:

  • What is this group like? What defines them?
  • What are their likes/dislikes?
  • What are their motivating factors to buy?
  • How do they buy?
  • How do they want to be reached?
  • How can my brand target and attract them to increase sales and market share?

The key to marketing home products successfully—whether operating in an economic downturn or not—is reaching out to your customers the way they want to be targeted and in the places they are comfortable.

Kleber & Associates is an Atlanta-based integrated marketing communications agency serving the home and building products industry for 25 years. Visit the Kleber & Associates website for the latest news and information about marketing for home and building products for consumers, architects, builders, remodelers, designers and manufacturers. Through our marketing, advertising, public relations and digital marketing expertise — we build better brands that build a better home.