SmartStrand Silk: A success story

Home Inside FCNews SmartStrand Silk: A success story

September 2/9 2013 Volume 27/number 10

Just over a year ago, Mohawk introduced the next generation of its successful SmartStrand fiber innovation, SmartStrand Silk. “The bar was set high with SmartStrand, so Mohawk had a lot to live up to with Silk,” said Justin Atcheson, president, Builders Floor Covering & Tile, with four stores in the Atlanta area. “The carpet is hands down the softest on the market today, and the cleanability story is simple and powerful. Silk has taken our business to the next level.”

Originally launched with four styles—two casual textures and two tailored textures—Silk was enhanced in the summer of 2012 with two multi-color products. Then, earlier this year, Mohawk brought four distinctive, stylized products into the fold: three LCL patterns and one loop pattern.

Colors on the four new products range from 16 to 24 depending on style and will join the six existing Silk products in its own display.

Donna Morris, RPM Carpets, East Harwich, Mass., told FCNews that Silk has been great for business. “It sells itself because as soon as you show people the comparison to old fiber and you tell them they can have it this soft and it will last, voila—they buy it.”

She also appreciates the new styles. “They are good additions to the basics we already had.”

Mohawk customers aren’t the only ones who prefer Silk. The company developed a mall intercept study in 10 cities across the United States with 300 consumers that were recent carpet buyers. In a blind test of two parts, consumers felt two samples, one SmartStand Silk and the other soft nylon. SmartStrand Silk was preferred 5-1 over soft nylon.

According to David Duncan, Mohawk’s senior vice president of marketing, SmartStrand Silk has brought retailers’ tremendous sales growth backed by unmatched styling and performance attributes. “Retailers are sharing positive experiences every day on how customers are responding to SmartStrand Silk,” Duncan said. “SmartStrand delivers the only product in the industry with lifetime built-in stain and soil protection that never washes or wears off.”

Mohawk introduced SmartStrand to the market eight years ago. The product has since become a top choice among retailers and consumers because of its softness, durability and cleanability.

“Consumers who have purchased Silk are coming in here to tell us about lemonade stains, wine spills and pet accidents on their new carpet, and it cleans up easily with water or mild detergent,” Atcheson said. “I tell our customers that you must experience it to believe it. We encourage customers to touch Silk on the colorwall and test the cleanability with in-store demos. It’s an easy sell.”

Based on walk testing, Mohawk demonstrates that SmartStrand Silk remains beautiful three times longer than soft nylon products and, based on consumer comparison testing, is preferred by consumers five to one over soft nylon.

Mohawk is communicating the SmartStrand Silk story to consumers through national print advertising, digital outreach and the company’s License to Spill experiential tour, where consumers can experience the performance of SmartStrand firsthand.

“SmartStrand Silk is only successful if it stands behind the product’s impressive claims and generates strong sales for our retailers,” Duncan said. “We’re excited about the astounding success of the product and look forward to continuing to build on our leadership in this category.”

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