It’s no secret that consumers are demanding products that are safer and healthier for themselves and their families. But many brands are capitalizing on this by making health claims that are scientifically unfounded. What separates the companies that are delivering on their brand promise from the ones that are not, and how can companies tighten their messaging to cut across the noise?
Here, Allergy Standards’ Digital Marketing Manager, Léa Daulan, interviews leaders, brand managers, and marketers who are part of a global movement towards healthier products that are rooted in rigorous science. In this interview, meet John Vanderpool, True Value‘s Divisional Vice President of Paint, a multinational corporation specialising in the production of floor and wall coverings.
Léa Daulan: True Value is a brand that has positioned itself as not just being community driven but having a lasting impact on community and occupying a permanent position within local areas. What are the key long-term community driven projects True Value hopes to have completed over the next decade?
John Vanderpool: The asthma & allergy friendly® Certification of EasyCare Ultra-Premium products and our EasyCare Platinum products, along with our “Painting a Brighter Future” grant program, shows True Value is committed to local communities. We are particularly excited for this grant program in terms of how it relates to the asthma & allergy friendly® Certification Program. When we provide paint for schools, it’s important for children to have a colorful environment to work and play in that is also safe and healthy. The “Painting a Brighter Future” program has been in place for several years and will surely go into the next decade. We have donated thousands and thousands of gallons of paint to communities and schools across the US, and we work hand in hand with the local True Value retailers who then coordinate with the local schools on their particular project needs.
Léa: True Value recently attended the Mom 2.0 Summit, the premier gathering of women leaders in media and business, as well as influencers. It’s an opportunity for brands such as True Value to connect directly with those who purchase the brand. With True Value taking such a hands-on approach to connect with consumers, what do you hope your customers will take away from your brand and the EasyCare paint specifically?
John: Our real takeaway from the Mom 2.0 Summit is that we want moms to feel comfortable with our EasyCare Ultra-Premium product: that it is healthy for their homes, for their environment and most importantly for their families. With the EasyCare Ultra-Premium product being asthma & allergy friendly®, LEED, MPI and Green Wise® Gold certified, we can promise these mothers that they are getting a high-performing, third-party certified product that meets their requirements. We ensure consumers that our paint products meet the strictest scientific requirements in the industry, and we also tell consumers that this is one of the highest-performing products they can use for their homes.
Léa: By taking the care to go through the rigorous scientific testing to reach asthma & allergy friendly® standards, True Value has proven itself as a brand that is committed to providing a healthier home through the products they carry. Why was it important for True Value to commit to reaching this standard and what does the certification mean to you?
John: The asthma & allergy friendly® Certification is very important to our overall paint strategy in the marketplace. True Value provides not only the highest-performing but also the safest products for a beautiful and healthy home. The Certification was the icing on the cake for us, and we are very excited about it. We plan for a long-term relationship, making sure that the raw materials in our product meet the stringent requirements of the Certification Program.
Léa: One of the biggest challenges facing paint brands at the moment is the high volume of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) that are released which can lead to an unclean air environment. In terms of product development what steps were taken to reduce the emissions of EasyCare paint?
John: I think it’s very important that we talk about the VOCs that are released into the air. In any gallon of paint, a significant amount of that gallon evaporates into the air. Up to half or 2/3 of the gallon evaporates over time. Having a product that has low VOC emissions, which is one of the parts of our certification, is super important for us. Going through all the testing that we did for this Certification Program really reinforced our values and proved that we have a really fine product with very low VOC emissions. The bottom line is our products do not send triggers to those that suffer from Allergy and Asthma.
Léa: Since launching the Certification, what response have you seen from your store owners and consumers?
John: It has been almost a year to the day now of officially being CERTIFIED. It has really placed True Value paint in the marketplace as a premium product with superior safety and performance. Consumers know EasyCare is a product they can trust in their homes. We spend a lot of time in our homes, and we want to make sure we have products that are healthy for families. The certification is very important to us. We will continue to meet and exceed the standards that the Certification Program puts forward.
Léa: Through all its community driven efforts, True Value seems to focus particularly on the youth and strives towards painting a brighter future for children. For example, The True Value Boys & Girls Club has recently entered its 55thyear of service. What steps do you feel the modern retailer must take in order to allow a better future for the younger generation?
John: If we think about the way True Value goes to market with 4500 retailer stores across the US and in 60 countries, it is really important we provide a high-quality product along with the many community initiatives led by local True Values. We want to make sure that we are not self-certifying, and this is why we pursued and achieved a third-party certification for emissions and toxicology. Frankly, the asthma & allergy friendly® Certificationis a prestigious achievement. It’s important for the younger generation to have these quality products in their homes as they grow up, and, when they get their own homes, they continue to trust EasyCare as their paint of choice.
Léa: Thank you.
About True Value
True Value Company, headquartered in Chicago, is one of the world’s leading hardlines wholesalers with a globally recognized brand and over 70 years’ experience serving independent hardware retailers. True Value Company provides its customers in over 60 countries an expansive product set with market-customized assortments at highly competitive prices, superior product availability, innovative marketing programs and a la carte value-added services like eCommerce ship-to-store, store remodel support and True Value University all within a flexible model which requires no membership. Serving over 4,400 stores worldwide, additional information on True Value is available at www.truevaluecompany.com
About Allergy Standards
Allergy Standards Limited (ASL) mantra is design thinking and an innovation for healthier indoor air for the allergy aware consumer. As an independent, international certification company, it creates meaningful scientific standards for testing a wide range of products and services to determine their impact on improving indoor air quality. ASL’s intellectual property portfolio includes unique testing protocols and suitability specifications for products to be CERTIFIED asthma & allergy friendly® . ASL’s mission is to improves lives by empowering people create the healthiest possible indoor environment through science, education and innovation.
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