In our time covering the Nationwide Marketing Group, they’ve made clear their intentions to help consumer tech retailers get a firm grasp on the world of the connected home. They’ve put a strong emphasis on the segment, in particular, at their biannual PrimeTime show where the Connected Home pavilion has been a staple the past few years; and their budding partnership with Google and Nest Labs has resulted in some unique offerings for their retailer members.
Proving that there’s always room for another major step forward, Nationwide announced the launch of a Connected Home Division within the buying group.
“Connected devices are everywhere – from phones and appliances to thermostats, televisions, speakers and even adjustable beds,” Tom Hickman, Nationwide’s president and chief member advocate, said in a statement. “But while the opportunities to connect are numerous, consumers are struggling to make this new technology really work for them in a cohesive fashion. Nationwide Connected Home will give our members and vendor partners the resources and support they need to move the connected home experience from a novelty to a necessity.”
Central to the group’s efforts with the new Connected Home Division, the statement said, are its partnerships with Google and Nest, as well as their partnership with AT&T that was announced at February’s PrimeTime event. The former, launched in 2017, provided their independent retailers with exclusive access to Google Nest’s entire line of thermostats, entertainment, security, and home assistance devices. And the latter brought their retailers a convenient and seamless way to offer home internet, DIRECTV, and cellular phone service to their customers.
The Connected Home Division will be tasked with building on those partnerships and providing their independent retailers more ways to differentiate themselves from big-box competitors.
“Connectivity is going to be the next battleground for premium retail,” Hickman said. “We are the only group positioned to connect all of these divergent pieces and create an unmatched in-store experience that benefits both our members and our vendor partners.”