“C4Yourself” how installers are leveraging Control4 Certified Showrooms
The opportunity for new smart home business is ripe, as homeowners have begun to get a taste of experiences like smart lights, thermostats, surveillance cameras, and voice control from singular DIY devices. But, as industry professionals, we know that experience is far from what’s possible today.
The promise of the smart home is for all of the devices to “just work,” and to do so together; but this is hardly the DIY experience, and few homeowners are equipped to install smart devices like door locks and thermostats, let alone to troubleshoot. According to a study by iQuor about DIY devices, “nearly one in four consumers (22%) couldn’t resolve the issue or simply gave up, and returned the product for a refund.”
Professional installation is critical to create an orchestrated smart home, whether it be a one-room, multi-room, or whole-home installation with hundreds of devices. Recently, Charlie Kindel joined the Control4 team as SVP of products & services, and he noted that managing his own smart home “was a second full time job to make all that really work.” A smart home is more than the sum of its parts; it requires a relationship between the homeowner specifying what they need and the integrator programming the system to succeed. Many Control4 integrators also have a dealership in the form of a retail space or showroom where they can connect with potential and returning customers to show off the possibilities of smart home technology with device and scene demonstrations, as well as a home base to design new systems.
"Since we opened the showroom we have found the experience to be extremely positive – having a reliable and consistent demo has helped us present what we offer with confidence."
To introduce homeowners to their nearest dealer, Control4 debuted its Certified Showroom programme, with over 150 locations opening in 25 markets worldwide, including within the UK and across Europe. The showrooms give dealers the chance to say to homeowners: “You want a smart home? Come see for yourself what we and Control4 can do.” So, in launching the Certified Showrooms, Control4 dealers worldwide coordinated “C4Yourself” Day as a global event inviting homeowners, architects, designers, builders, and press to an evening of smart home demonstrations, discussion, and refreshments. Thousands of smart home enthusiasts or those new to home technology attended C4Yourself events at their local certified dealer, representing a flood of new business opportunities for participating installers.
Images: Evolve AV
During the C4Yourself events, attendees to local Certified Showrooms were able to try out a Control4 smart home experience hands-on, including features such as one-room entertainment, smart lighting, multi-room audio, security, comfort, voice control, and networking.
“Certified showroom dealers are verified experts in wow-ing homeowners through interactive storytelling, visually stunning displays and hands-on demonstrations. These dealers have demonstrated a deep understanding of how to properly convey and deliver the real-life benefits of living in a truly automated, personalised Control4 Smart Home,” commented Martin Plaehn, CEO of Control4.
The showrooms make it easy for homeowners and home design professionals to learn about and interact with smart home products to work with their dealer to design a bespoke smart home experience to suit their lifestyle. In addition to serving as a sales tool, Certified Showrooms also allow dealers to build relationships with builders, architects, and designers, and open up opportunities for them to collaborate on projects and host more events going forward that can engage and educate their local community in smart home possibilities.
Control4 Certified Showroom dealers started getting new business following the C4Yourself Day events and many are reporting a continuous increase in customer traffic over the past few months since then. Luke Macfarren, director of Evolve Audio Visual in Berkshire, UK said, “Since we opened the showroom we have found the experience to be extremely positive – having a reliable and consistent demo has helped us present what we offer with confidence. The future of our Certified Showroom is very exciting.”
The Certified Showroom program continues to grow from the 140 of the initial program launch, twelve additional locations added since, and dozens of dealer applications in process, with more expected to be certified before year-end.
The next C4Yourself Day will take place on Thursday October 18, 2018. Learn more and search for your local Control4 Certified Showroom here.
Brad Hintze is senior director of product marketing at Control4