Where will you be when the smart home market takes off?

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Where will you be when the smart home market takes off?

Smart homes are so much more than just cool gadgetry. They’re the new point of connection for consumers when it comes to combining energy efficiency, security, beauty and convenience in their homes. It’s true that the overall market for home automation has been slow to take off – but new homes and home products are being designed with wireless communication in mind, so it’s only a matter of time. The untapped potential is absolutely enormous.

That’s why, as part of this year’s Energy Pulse™ study, we polled 2,000 American consumers about their interest in smart home technology, including what they’ve purchased, how satisfied they are, what their barriers are to buying, and their gut reactions to the technology.

The result is two special reports that are must-reads if you’re in the smart home space or would like to be:

The Smart Home Gender Gap: What it is and how to bridge it, which explores what we think is the real barrier to mass market adoption,


Smart Home Strategies for Utilities: Five reasons you should get in the game, a look at why utilities should be offering smart home packages to their customers – and why procrastination on this front is a big mistake.

Utilities: we really can’t imagine a better opportunity for you than smart homes. In an environment where reducing energy use is becoming the norm, you’ll need a more proactive business model to stay relevant, and smart homes are a natural fit to get your customers engaged in DSM and time-of-use programs – plus provide a valuable service beyond just selling units of power. Smart homes are your manifest destiny! We’ve been hammering this point home for a few years now, and now we have numbers to back it up.

For the makers of smart apps and home-related products: have you been hyping the cool factor rather than emphasizing the end benefits? You may have lost half your audience. We were surprised to see how significant the gap was between women and men for interest in home tech, even though smart homes provide many of the benefits women clearly want. Are you ready to make this connection for them?

You’ll want to develop a smart strategy sooner rather than later. Not a day goes by that I don’t see a new article about advances in smart technology, a catalog in my mailbox offering smart products for the home or a new promo for hub devices at my local big-box store. (In fact, as you read this, the entire consumer technology world is gathered in Las Vegas at Consumer Technology Association’s CES® 2016, learning about the latest advances that will make all our homes infinitely more connected, more comfortable and more convenient.)

Interest is growing rapidly, but because marketers haven’t capitalized on making the benefits clear, the field is still wide open. (If you’re thinking that some of the big guns have already cornered the smart home market, think again – our research suggests that current smart tech users aren’t particularly likely to buy from the same company for their next smart purchase.)

That’s just one of the key insights we’ve uncovered to inform your marketing strategy – so be sure to download your special reports!


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Posted on

January 6, 2016

About the Author

Suzanne Shelton

Suzanne Shelton

Where Suzanne sees opportunity, you can bet results will follow. Drawing on her extensive knowledge of both the advertising world and the energy and environment arena, Suzanne provides unparalleled strategic insights to our clients and to audiences around North America. Suzanne is a guest columnist in multiple publications and websites, such as GreenBiz, and she speaks at around 20 conferences a year, including Sustainable Brands, Fortune Brainstorm E and Green Build.

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Suzanne Shelton

President and CEO

Suzanne is the voice and the vision of Shelton Group. Drawing on her extensive experience in energy and the environment – and 25+ years in the marketing and advertising industry – Suzanne provides high-level strategic insights for our clients and guidance for our research and creative departments. She regularly speaks at conferences around the country, including Sustainable Brands, Fortune Brainstorm E and the International Builders’ Show, and serves as a guest columnist for publications like Fast Company, Green Builder and GreenBiz.com.

Susannah Enkema

VP Research & Insights

Susannah directs our research team and plays a key role in extracting the nuggets of information that pave the way for recommended marketing strategies and creative approaches. Susannah has nearly two decades of market research and strategy experience, including her role as president of SE Consulting, where she led the services for the likes of DIY Network and the makers of GORE-TEX®.

Matt Brass

VP Creative

Matt steers the creative department in concepting, designing and producing campaigns. He ensures sound strategy and deep insights inform everything his team develops, and works closely with the accounts department to ensure copy and designs will meet our clients’ goals. As a designer and filmmaker himself, he’s also a principal contributor to all of Shelton’s in-house photography and videography work.

Courtnay Hamachek

VP Operations

Courtnay oversees our day-to-day operations to keep us running smoothly and support our growth. She establishes project management systems and processes to help our teams anticipate bottlenecks, prevent process issues, and keep projects on time and on target. Courtnay has built extensive experience over 25 years in all aspects of marketing, from account services and project management to design and production.

Aaron Crecy

Digital Marketing Director

Aaron is responsible for planning, executing and measuring digital marketing strategies for Shelton Group and our clients, with an emphasis on inbound, content, SEO, social media, email and paid initiatives. He constantly researches and explores new tactics and strategies to improve digital campaign performance and results.

Aaron brings to the table more than 20 years of marketing leadership experience with premium consumer-facing brands. He came to Shelton Group by way of Malibu Boats, where, as Director of Global Marketing, he oversaw strategic marketing planning and execution for multiple product lines, with specific emphasis on social media and digital. Prior to that, he served as CMO for a leading daily fantasy sports operator, guiding it from startup to the industry’s third-ranked site.

Scot Case

Senior Consultant

A sustainability strategy consultant since 1993, Scot has served as non-profit leader, as a partner in an environmental marketing firm that he grew and sold, and as an executive in a multi-billion-dollar, international company. He has published dozens of articles and case studies, was co-author of the original “Sins of Greenwashing” study, testified before Congress, and been quoted on NPR, Good Morning America, CNN, The New York Times, Business Week, and the Wall Street Journal. Scot was also highlighted in an Emmy award-winning documentary on sustainable purchasing.

Casey Ward

VP Account Services

Casey manages our relationships, growth and development with a specific group of clients that includes Environmental Defense Fund, Cotton LEADS and CertainTeed Insulation. She provides leadership and support for the account team members who manage the day-to-day processes for these clients. She contributes to strategic direction for each client and guides our creative efforts to ensure everything we do builds toward meeting – or exceeding – the client’s goals. Her ability to simultaneously see the big picture and pay close attention to the details helps her champion her clients’ needs and identify new growth opportunities for them.