Know Your Clients' 'Value Equation,' Dealers Advised

Know Your Clients' 'Value Equation,' Dealers Advised

"Knowing the key customer segments and what's important to them enables kitchen and bath specialists to design in a way that meets their needs," said Mark Nowotarski in an address to kitchen/bath dealers and designers during the recent K/B West Conference here. Nowotarski is director of brand management for Masterbrand Cabinets, Inc., the Jasper, IN-based parent company of Aristokraft, Decora, Omega, Schrock and Diamond.

Citing consumer research
conducted by Masterbrand, Nowotarski identified each of the five key consumer segments and their "value equations" as follows:

  • Group 1: "These people are enthusiastic, and very involved," Nowotarski said. "These are the people for whom the kitchen is a primary focus of their home life. They are typically gourmet chefs, and entertain a lot. They want their kitchen to reflect upscale styling, the latest trends, special finishes, embellishments, the 'best' of everything."

    Nowotarski estimated that this type of client represents almost half of the money spent annually on kitchen remodeling.
    Value Equation: "They want someone to listen to their ideas," Nowotarski said. "After the remodeling process has been completed, they believe they're really the ones who designed their new kitchen."
  • Group 2: "They want their kitchen to have good looks but, in truth, they rarely use their kitchen," he stressed. What they're looking for is a 'shrine' that reflects their status. They want fashionable door styles and storage accessories."

    Value Equation: "These people, in essence, are looking for a project manager," Nowotarski said.
  • Group 3: "These people are anxious, and easily overwhelmed," Nowotarski pointed out. They're generally younger and more constrained with their money. We call them 'dream seekers.' They want kitchens that have a nice appearance and represent a step up in quality from the typical new-home construction choices."

    Value Equation: "They want assistance in simplifying the process, and a sense of reassurance about the choices they're making," Nowotarski said.
  • Group 4: "These people are self-assured and confident," Nowotarski noted. "Typically, these are your do-it-yourselfers."

    Value Equation: "They seek functionality more than style, and they want assistance in answering their questions."
  • Group 5: "These people are focused primarily on budget and are typically only undertaking
    the project out of necessity," Nowotarski explained.

Value Equation: "They want immediate solutions."

Masterbrand research has revealed that actual product accounts for only about one-third of total client satisfaction. In contrast, service accounts for two-thirds of client satisfaction.
Therefore, Nowotarski noted, "Listen to what your customer wants. Design to meet your customer's expectation of value."