The Bonding Moment: How Home Improvement Brands Create a True Connection from the Start
December 20, 2016
How Home Improvement Brands Create a True Connection from the Start
Developing a bond. It’s crucial in so many areas of life. Whether it’s the emotional bond between a parent and child or a writer developing bonds between characters to create a meaningful experience, there are moments when the opportunity to strengthen a bond are greater than others. For home improvement brands, it’s often at the first moment of product use or, “The Bonding Moment.”
It’s that singular moment you fall in love with a brand. It’s when you step back and realize the paint really did cover everything in one coat. Or even that moment when you turn on the water, flush and experience no leaks after installing a new flush valve and flapper set yourself.
For home improvement brands, “The Bonding Moment” can occur at different points from opening the box to cleaning up after you complete a project. Here are a few examples (and characteristics) I’ve noticed that truly exemplify “The Bonding Moment.”
1. Intuitive Packaging
How many times have you bought something only to spend considerable working time just taking it out of the packaging? In some cases, it takes a box cutter, a knife and a pair of heavy-duty scissors and that doesn’t make a strong first impression. Conversely, think about Apple product packaging – it’s intuitive and welcoming, which inspires a strong desire to bond with the product.
2. Intuitive Product Design
The squeezable weed killing spray made pulling weeds a thing of the past. However, repetitive squeezing is tiresome and you still had to get down on your hands and knees to spray it, lest you kill all of your grass too. Round-Up recently introduced a comfort wand with an automatic and continuous spray trigger. It’s a great example of how a brand can create a bonding moment by improving an existing customer experience, even if only slightly.
3. First-Use Success
Home improvement brands can borrow a page from home meal delivery brand Blue Apron, which not only sends you every ingredient you’ll need to construct a meal, but also a one-page card with step-by-step instructions. The brand is setting you up to have a memorable meal just by the delivery. Their bonding moment happens as soon as you take everything out of the box and rather than being overwhelmed, you realize the meal is something you can totally do!
4. Registrations Become Introductions
Product registration is an important, but oft-forgotten or disregarded task. That’s because many brands treat it like paperwork rather than what it truly is – an introduction to the brand. Offer something in return for their data, like a discount or exclusive access. This can be the difference between a short-term customer buying your product or a long-term advocate buying your brand.
5. Celebrating the Wins
Changing a front door lock or the replacing a kitchen faucet are not easy tasks for the average DIYer. A successful installation instills pride in both the activity and the brand. A brand can use the final step in the instructions page to encourage photos and postings of the effort via the brand’s Pinterest, Facebook and other social media properties.
“The Bonding Moment” is going to be different for everyone. The key for brands is to create as many magical moments as they can throughout the customer journey.
David Sladack is senior vice president, director of channel marketing at BRUNNERWORKS, and leads the agency's Home Enrichment practice.