Thinking and Designing the Upscale Experience

By Buzz Delano
Published on: November 13, 2020

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We find ourselves eleven months into the year with no shortage of things to do; ideas to act on and creative eggs to hatch. What to do and how to go about it is something you need to think through wisely for the benefit of your customers and your business. After all, everything you do is a reflection of your brand and your business principles so these had better be darn good decisions you make, right?

More than ever before I believe that developing upscale opportunities, campaigns, and products should be your priority. When you read “upscale” what do you think of? Go on, your thinking of it right now, aren’t you?  Whatever it is, your thinking of doing it really well. If it is an opportunity to present your ideas for a system design, a campaign  that shows the value to others or to embark on a new product development plan, there’s no doubt in my mind that you’re thinking somehow about making it a great and lasting experience.

When you begin this “upscale” plan, you must be mindful that everything about the endeavor will need to be very well done or the outcome will have shortcomings.  After all, a great experience, message or product is the result of lots of really important little details adding up. Think about a project you did for a well-heeled client with a lovely home. Their budget was ample for you to really impress them and for you to profit nicely from the work.  You spent months planning, designing, implementing and finally, finishing the system. Everything worked well, looked nice and was easy to use. However, you know that you chose a couple of products that were a bit easier to install and program than ones that would have performed better. You hear something that you realize could sound better. You play with the UI and secretly wish it to do something it cannot. You walk the home at dusk and note that the lighting doesn’t have quite the character needed to bring out the interior décor assets as well as it should. You regret that you could have done better. Don’t be this person. Don’t cut corners. Think, design, install and deliver the upscale experience. Always!

Businesses in our profession have a wonderful opportunity to always sell upscale and enjoy the fruits of doing so:

1) Take the extra steps for quality when designing and implementing a home system.

2) Carefully choose the images and words used in a marketing campaign.

3) Make the fit and finish of that product better than it needs to be.

4) Customers will notice.  You will be more prideful.  Customers will be happy.

5) You will be more profitable.

6) Customers will recommend you or your products.

7) You will be motivated to do it again.

Think about the beautiful projects that win awards and are promoted in magazines and how much work went into them and your thoughts of “wow, I should have done work like that.” Or the latest marketing campaign that got you so excited that you bought the product or are learning more about its brand experience. Or a product that a competitor just launched, that seems to have an edge on yours. If you choose to exceed those experiences in your own work, you will be delivering an “upscale” experience.

Buzz Delano

Buzz Delano

Buzz is a strategic business development consultant to the residential and commercial systems channel. His consulting firm, Delano Associates, works closely with companies on strategy, brand positioning, marketing, sales, product development, sourcing and manufacturing. Buzz has been deeply involved with CEDIA and served on the Board of Directors from 2007-2013 and has been Chairman of CEDIA Management Conferences, Governance Committee and currently serves on the CEDIA Advisory Board.

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