CHC believes that if the hydronics industry is going to gain a greater market share of new home heating installations in Canada that “outside the box” thinking is required. What remains to be seen is if it can get funding.
The plan is to launch a massive marketing effort aimed at Canadian consumers, particularly high-income families (making $150,000 annually). The theme will be “Beautiful Heat,” in hopes of making high-end consumers desire hydronic/radiant heat much in the same way they desire granite countertops, Sub-Zero refrigerators or Jenn-Air gas ranges.
First-year costs for the program would be just over $3 million; the first three years would cost $8 million.
For comparison sake, the Hydronic Industry Alliance, a marketing arm of the Hydronics Institute that was formed last year in the United States, had a first-year budget of $100,000. The U.S. economy is 10 times the size of Canada’s.
CHC’s funding will try to copy that of the boating industry in Canada, which launched a similar type program a couple of years ago, in that there would be a surcharge of approximately 2 percent on all hydronic sales in Canada.
The group now needs wholesalers to buy into the concept. But because there are only two big wholesalers and two big buying groups in Canada that amount for 80 percent-plus of hydronic sales in that country, CHC feels it’s workable. If funding was approved by early 2008, the ad campaign could be launched by the Fall of next year.
Currently, hydronic’s share of market is just below 6 percent of new home heating installations in Canada. The goal of the Beautiful Heat program would be to boost the share of market to 15 percent by 2012.