ST. LOUIS, MO. — American homeowners spent more than $126 billion on home improvement projects in 2012, and the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University predicts that number to be eclipsed in 2013. With homeowners investing in home improvement/remodeling projects at record levels, home improvement product manufacturers see an enormous opportunity to sell more products.

But are they missing out on an even greater opportunity to increase sales? A new white paper, just released by Geile/Leon Marketing Communications suggests they are.

Entitled “A Special Report For Home Improvement Product Manufacturers: The Big Payoff Awaits Those Who Invest In Their Contractors’ Businesses,” the paper makes a compelling case that manufacturers who invest time and resources in their customers’ businesses through marketing assistance, can reap major benefits.

“In preparing this white paper, Geile/Leon conducted extensive one-on-one interviews with multiple contractors, and surveyed hundreds of others who provide a variety of professional services to homeowners from around the U.S.,” said Tim Leon, president and brand strategist, Geile/Leon Marketing Communications. “Our research shows while manufacturers look to the contractor to support their business by selling their product, contractors say it should be the other way around.”

According to contractors interviewed for the white paper, the kind of support and assistance they would value most from manufacturers includes providing marketing dollars, products for display and demonstration, IT and website services and anything else that will raise the brand awareness of the contractor.  The white paper cites specific manufacturers, large and small, who provide this kind of support, and offers details of those programs. 

Said Leon, “If more manufacturers followed the lead of those who have invested time, talent and yes, money, in their remodeler/contractor customers, they would very likely see true partnerships formed, and realize the measurable impact those partnerships have on the bottom lines of both companies.”

Based in Clayton, Mo., Geile/Leon offers clients an integrated approach to marketing, including brand discovery and development, advertising, social media and online capabilities, sales promotion, public relations and direct marketing. The company has a staff of 20, and had more than $4 million in billings in 2012.