BSH, parent company of Neff, Siemens, and Bosch, believes that creating an experience in the showroom is a way for retailers to better explain smart technology and appliances to customers.
Speaking to kbbreview from its stand at the kbb Birmingham show, Tristan Sherlock, independent sales director for BSH UK, said he had seen retailers use smart technology as a way to engage customers and create a unique experience in the showroom.
Sherlock said: “One of the key features of smart appliances is that it gives retailers the opportunity to add theatre into the showroom. With retail these days people want an experience – they want something different.”
He went on to explain how – during a recent visit to a showroom – the retailer programmed Alexa so that as soon as he walked through the door the coffee machine turned on and the oven started to heat up a chocolate croissant, while the showroom speakers played music.
“For me, that highlighted how you can personalise the experience for the consumer,” said Sherlock. “So, imagine you are the consumer and you go into two different kitchen retailers. At one of them you get a personalised welcome, where they know what coffee you like, that attention to detail and that theatre can really add to the showroom. This is what retailers really need to add to their showrooms – that point of difference to make their business stand out.”
Alex McNeillie, consumer strategy lead at BSH UK, said that demonstrating smart appliances is a way to make the consumer ask questions. He said: “It is really to do nothing more than make the consumers ask: ‘tell me more about this.’ The designer has a way to talk to the consumer about connectivity, because all of a sudden the consumer is curious and wants to ask questions.
“First and foremost, when people walk into a showroom, they won’t be directly thinking that they need a wi-fi-connected oven and we have to create curiosity in the product. We need this wild experience to make people willing to listen. It is not as simple as explaining that your oven can be controlled by an app on your phone as it is not theatrical enough. You are not capturing their attention enough.”
BSH’s team of home economists were cooking food on the stand using live appliances – from its Neff, Siemens and Bosch brands – to demonstrate the functions and features of the collections.