Lowe’s Home Improvement store returned to CES 2016 in Las Vegas to showcase its Iris smart home solutions with an evolved concept: a village. The retailer last year erected a life-like suburban home, yet despite having half the booth space and half the budget to work with this year, the brand activated a larger marketing message with the theme “Iris can be there throughout your life.” The 28-foot-tall build gave attendees a glimpse into three home management tech scenarios, targeting millennials, families and retirees all within a 1,500-square-foot footprint.
What the brand lost in space it made up for in the details. Attendees on-site found themselves in an urban setting on the corner of Lowe’s Boulevard and Iris Way (green street signs positioned on the corner of the footprint in a cross section of travel lanes on the show floor). At a newsstand (reception), they perused magazines and newspapers, among them a custom circular similar to the newsletter at CES but branded with Lowe’s and Iris, explaining the offerings on display. Also new this year, Lowe’s staffers wore the signature red vests that employees wear in the retail stores, along with jeans and a shirt.
“This was a nice nod to the overall corporate brand, but also a great equalizer in that we’re no different than the guys you meet when buying a hammer or materials for a project. We happen to be on the trade show floor, but we’re always here to serve our customers,” says David Felgner, Lowe’s project manager.
As for the demo journey, it started in the loft living portion of the booth focused on home automation solutions and products applicable to a younger consumer. Among demos was the Iris app that at the touch of a button can make window blinds rise, thermostats lower, lights switch on and music start. From there, attendees moved into the suburban home zone, which represented kids, family safety and security. In the “retirement condo,” demos emphasized peace of mind solutions with Iris products that allow users to, among solutions, shut off the water in the event of a leak.
Like last year’s booth, the space featured a merchandising area where attendees could peruse about 50 Iris products, ask questions with experts and make purchases.
“This year we reused probably about 40 percent of last year’s booth including wall panels and physical structure,” Felgner says. “The nice part about that is it allowed us to control some of the new construction costs, but it also helped us in a neat way in that people remembered us from last year and could experience the evolution of the booth message.” Build: Studio Displays, Pineville, NC.