Tom Kraeutler: This is the Money Pit’s Top Products Podcast coming to you from the 2015 National Hardware Show in Las Vegas Nevada. I’m Tom Kraeutler.
Leslie Segrete: I’m Leslie Segrete.
Tom Kraeutler: Spring has sprung all over the country, and we want to see beautiful green lawns.
Leslie Segrete: Finally.
Tom Kraeutler: Finally, after a really nasty winter. One of the reasons that lawns are green across the country is because of the Scotts’ company and the Scotts Miracle-Gro products that helps us be so successful as gardeners for our home. Makes pros out of us.
Leslie Segrete: They even make myself successful, and you know I kill everything in the garden.
Tom Kraeutler: One of the guys responsible for that is Glenn Neilson, and Glenn is the director of brand marketing for Scotts Miracle-Gro. Hi Glenn.
Glenn Neilson: Hi, thank you very, very much for having me.
Tom Kraeutler: Thank you for our greenness.
Glenn Neilson: You are very welcome.
Tom Kraeutler: For making us smarter gardeners.
Glenn Neilson: Mother nature has a little bit to do with that as well.
Tom Kraeutler: Yeah. I’ll tell you what my mom and dad were fans of Scotts Miracle-Gro. I always remember growing up in the house, and always having bags of it around. My parents always adding it to plants and everything they wanted to grow and make successful in our gardens.
Glenn Neilson: That’s great. At this point in the history of Scotts’ itself, we’re coming up on our 150th anniversary here.
Leslie Segrete: Oh my goodness.
Tom Kraeutler: Wow. Quite an accomplishment.
Glenn Neilson: We’ve been around for many generations of gardeners.
Leslie Segrete: That is so fantastic, and I feel like the National Hardware Show is an excellent venue for you guys because you sort of cover the gamut of a lot of outdoor lifestyle product, and outdoor materials. Let’s call it materials because you use it in the garden. You’re really from the soil, to the actual bulb you put into it. Tell us a little bit about, I know you’re engineering some bulbs that will just be super successful and make my yard look amazing.
Glenn Neilson: Yes, we are. I think when most folks think about Miracle-Gro, they go to potting soil and garden soil and the blue powder, right?
Tom Kraeutler: Right.
Glenn Neilson: Miracle-Gro plant food. One of our new initiatives here for the last couple years is to actually expand our brands into some new categories. Leverage the knowledge that we have, and we’ve partnered with some top folks in the industries. Leslie mentioned one, bulbs. We partnered with a company called Garden State Bulbs.
Tom Kraeutler: Are they New Jersey based?
Glenn Neilson: They are New Jersey based. Big office in New Jersey.
Tom Kraeutler: All right. My home base.
Glenn Neilson: They’ll be offering a Miracle-Gro line, beginning this fall of premium bulbs. Again, allowing our consumers who’ve come to trust the brand, to actually take things to the next step, and interact with the brand in new ways, and deliver superior performance for them.
Leslie Segrete: I think you’re really giving every end user of every product that Scotts offers, that’s success feeling. You make gardening so simple if you understand the process, and you really give that sense of pride and success, and that’s why I think everybody trusts you so much.
Glenn Neilson: I think that’s exactly right, that’s what we strive for. Particularly today, where everybody is so time strapped. It’s about delivering innovation that brings convenience and success to people. If they’re going to spend a couple of hours working in their yard, they want it to result in results that they’re expecting and things that they’re happy with.
Tom Kraeutler: In addition to the bulb partnership, you also have a partnership with Swan who makes hoses and nozzles. Products that are very well respected, been around for a long time. You’re going to be rolling out some of their lay flat technology?
Glenn Neilson: Correct, with out Scotts branded max flex hose, which is available in multiple lengths, but is a special kink resistant lay flat technology that is guaranteed to never kink for you. Again, looking to partner with folks who are at the cutting edge of their particular categories.
Leslie Segrete: Work smarter, not harder.
Tom Kraeutler: Yeah.
Glenn Neilson: Exactly, delivering innovation.
Tom Kraeutler: We’re all about that.
Glenn Neilson: Sure.
Tom Kraeutler: That includes our friends at TTI, who are making some lithium tools together with you.
Glenn Neilson: I’m very excited about the TTI program, actually. We’ve partnered by TTI, who is by far the top in their industry, and developed a Scotts sink system, which is a 20 volt lithium ion based platform that delivers a full line of outdoor power tools.
Tom Kraeutler: Were talking about string trimmers, hedge trimmers, chainsaws, and blowers. This is an amazing of you to do a chainsaw, battery powered chainsaw today.
Leslie Segrete: That’s so great.
Glenn Neilson: Correct. Where lithium technology has gone these days, people would be amazed at the power and duration that you can get out of a battery. It’s approaching the point where it’s replacing gas for most homeowners.
Tom Kraeutler: We’re talking with Glenn Neilson, he’s the director of branch marketing for Scotts Miracle-Gro. Company’s been around for 150 years. How are the consumer needs different than they were say, ten, twenty, thirty years ago?
Glenn Neilson: I think time is a big key right now, as well as new technology. The days of sitting down Sunday morning reading the newspaper are slowly disappearing, right?
Leslie Segrete: Gone.
Glenn Neilson: We’re reaching out to consumers in ways in which they want to be reached. That’s through mobile application, through digital, and through radio even.
Leslie Segrete: You have to, because as these millennials are sort of getting into this home buying age, and home maintenance, and yard maintenance. This is a group of people who were never given a course in home economics, or construction, or gardening.
Tom Kraeutler: Exactly.
Leslie Segrete: They really don’t know, so if you’re not speaking their language, and reaching them in a method they respond to, you’re lost.
Glenn Neilson: You’re exactly correct. You need to make the process simple, enjoyable, and you need to deliver on those results. It’s about delivering products that enable people to be successful, but utilize the limited amount of time that they have more efficiently. I think our snap spreader is a great example of that as well. It’s a cartridge based spreader, it’s a 4,000 square foot bag, it’s self contained. You snap it into the spreader, press a lever to lock it in, and you go. There’s no mixing.
Tom Kraeutler: There’s no mixing. There’s no calculating.
Leslie Segrete: That’s fantastic.
Glenn Neilson: No spreader settings.
Tom Kraeutler: Exactly. That’s a great idea. Folks just want to do it one, do it right, they want to have confidence in their purchase. They’re afraid of making a mistake, and they certainly don’t want to make a mistake with their lawn and their garden and have it kind of go yellow on then or die.
Leslie Segrete: Be the laughing stalk of the whole neighborhood.
Tom Kraeutler: Yeah, exactly. You guys have been doing this so well, and doing it for so long, you just have a lot of respect in the industry. You have our respect. We really appreciate you filling us in on kind of where you are with the company now, and many more years of success with Scotts.
Glenn Neilson: Thank you, we appreciate that very much. A pleasure to be here. Thanks for having us.
Leslie Segrete: Thanks for joining us.
Tom Kraeutler: If you’d like more information about the Scotts Miracle-Gro product line, where should we go Glenn?
Glenn Neilson: Thank you for having me.