Home Automation Product Marketers Can Target Techies with Mobile Apps

BY Courtney Huckabay

Smartphones and voice commands vie for control over the rapidly growing smart home market, according to The NPD Group. Home automation sales are up 41 percent year-​over-​year in 2015.

As the desire to create intuitive home spaces continues to increase, so too do the opportunities for devices and technologies to gain share in the smart home market. According to The NPD Group Connected Intelligence Connected Home Automation Report, nearly two-​thirds (64 percent) of smart home product owners used a smartphone to control or monitor their home automation devices. Additionally, 73 percent of smart home owners already use voice commands, with 61 percent of those consumers expressing an interest in wanting to use voice to control more products in their homes.

According to AudienceSCAN data, 14.9% of U.S. adults enjoy "working with technology/​gadgets." And 25.8% want to buy things that make them feel "connected" in the coming months.

This reliance on smartphones to control and monitor the smart home is due, in part, to app compatibility, as nearly all home automation devices have an iPhone or Android app,” said John Buffone, executive director, Connected Intelligence. “As apps and devices become more intuitive, voice recognition – and thus, voice control – will begin to play a more prominent role in the further development of the smart home.”

AudienceSCAN also found 19.6% of U.S. adults said "tech savvy" best describes how they see themselves or their personality. And 29.3% of these Techies want to buy things that make them feel "in control" in the near future.

In line with the momentum to automate and control the smart home, The NPD Group’s Retail Tracking Service has also recorded that Home Automation sales are up 41 percent year-​over-​year in 2015 versus 2014. This tracking service’s metrics incorporate not only systems controllers such as thermostats, but also the broad range of smart capabilities across technologies such as power, sensors, lighting, security/​monitoring, locks, and kits.

AudienceSCAN found 15% of Techies intend to buy Stereo/​Home audio equipment this year, so highlight how they can control these new additions to their homes from their smartphones in the marketing you do.

In addition to wanting compatibility, consumers also desire convenience, evidenced by the increased usage of voice commands in the smart home market; and that number is only expected to increase as the majority of smart home product owners have indicated their desire to better integrate speech recognition technology throughout their homes. Rising to meet consumer demand is a new product set that showcases the functionality of voice command technology, such as the Amazon Echo, which leverages voice controls to turn on a Phillips Hue bulb or change the temperature settings on an Ecobee thermostat.

Techies want to control all aspects of their homes, and are willing to invest in the last tech to be "smart" about it. AudienceSCAN reported 23.7% of Techies will buy new video game systems this year and 16.8% will purchase cameras/​video cameras this year.

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies, or with the SalesFuel API. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.