Engaging Customers at Home—and at RetailConnecting to younger customers and increasing foot traffic at retail serves as an overriding goal of the coalition. Using the Smart Plant Home app, customers create a digital garden of their plants, giving retailers a footprint of all the plants the users own. Based on the app’s information, retailers understand their customers’ buying preferences, allowing the retailer to send customized notifications that encourage like-plant purchases at the IGC, instore promotions, or announcements of special events based on the customer’s zip code.
Additionally, the app creates loyalty and engagement with customers by providing expert advice. Users receive a custom care calendar, reminding them of when and how to tend their plants. Customers can upload a plant photo for identification, take a photo of a problem plant for diagnosis, or search for plants that work well in specific situations, like on a balcony. The personal, expert interactions build trust among millennials and enhance their knowledge and confidence for future plant and garden purchases. Smart Plant Home also builds community: with more than 81,000 Instagram followers and the 40,000 posts with its custom hashtag #peoplewithplants, millennials spread plant love on social media. (Smart Plant Home even offers a plant-driven book club to bring green lovers together.)
Creating Trust and Assessing Trends for Bottom Line ResultsSmart Plant Home retail members benefit both from the trackable information available and the direct contact with customers in their region. As a Smart Plant Home retailer, all of the IGC’s plant and product inventory is uploaded to the platform, allowing customers to scan bar codes on site for product information and to upload plants to their digital gardens. When a customer scans a plant on site, the app changes to feature that store’s home screen, plants, promotions, events, videos, and more. Users’ zip codes connect them to their local IGCs. “As a distributor, it is our mission to provide complete fulfillment solutions that are accurate, clean, dependable, and on-time to our retail partners so that they can continue to grow their businesses,” says Shaun Quinlan, President and CEO of Prince Corporation. “Partnering with other industry leaders to share information and leverage today’s technology for the benefit of the IGCs and their customers is a win-win for everyone.” While the four partner companies offer services that might be seen as competitive, the individuals behind the brands realize that to reach the lucrative millennial market—and boost the bottom line of IGC customers—working together to achieve common goals outweighs individual concerns. “Our goal is to help grow local nurseries and independent garden centers to their full revenue potential using the scalable power of technology,” says Jeff Dinslage, CEO/President of Home and Garden Fulfillment, Inc. “By offering an easy pathway to web solutions, we give green businesses the opportunity to establish and grow their digital presence. Younger customers expect top technology experiences, and by working with our green partners and sharing information, we help our IGC customers meet the demands of those consumers.” The in-depth reports provided by Smart Plant Home keeps an eye on trends and actual traction points of customer behavior. It shows what the customer owns at home and what they’re looking for, which aids retailers in cross-selling and upselling appropriate plants and products. “There needs to be inherent value in the products and solutions we provide customers,” says The Perfect Plant’s CEO Ken Klopp. “My ultimate goal is to help businesses and people succeed; to serve people and solve problems others haven’t been able to. When an IGC performs well, all of us in the green industry benefit, so it makes sense to combine resources to help our retail customers succeed.”
Technology Savvy and Local LoversOne of the main reasons the partners decided to focus on IGCs involves the purchasing habits of millennials. Younger consumers expect excellence in purchasing experiences and demand top technological tools to make the experience seamless. Plus, millennials eschew chains and “Big Box” conglomerates in favor of locally-owned stores. By offering top technology, enhanced customer in-store and in-app experiences, and engaging with customers on site and through thoughtful post-purchase follow-up, the partners feel confident that IGCs will win millennial consumer loyalty—and long-term profits.
InfoWant to know more about how Smart Plant Home and its partners can benefit your business? Contact us:
Smart Plant Home
The Perfect Plant
Home & Garden Fulfillment, Inc.
firstname.lastname@example.org / 866-335-0975