Get It Done
When it comes to chemical specialties—the aerosols, disinfectants and sanitizers con-
sumers enlist in their battle against dirt, germs and grime—efficacy, speed and conve-
nience are top demands.
Christine Esposito • Associate Editor
SC Johnson is testing the All In One, which houses any three cleaning solutions in one
device, allowing consumers to tackle multiple cleaning chores with one unit.
Homeowners, she said, want “the most effective and
quickest” product because they already spend quite a bit
of their valuable time keeping their living spaces livable.
On average, American adults spend 13 hours a week
cleaning, according to Jelmar, which took advantage of
2012’s Leap Year status to reinforce CLR’s multi-tasking
capabilities with a marketing campaign reminding consumers how its original Calcium, Lime and Rust cleaner
has helped them clean faster and“get their day back” for
more than 30 years.
The Skokie, IL-based firm also expanded its roster
of products to include CLR Stainless Steel Cleaner, CLR
Stone Cleaner, CLR Outdoor Furniture Cleaner and CLR
Bathroom & Kitchen Cleaner, offering consumers targeted products that can clean specific surfaces and areas
both inside and outside their home.
AS THE WEATHER gets warmer here in the US, homeown- ers’ thoughts switch from snow shovels and rock salt to budding trees and sun-filled afternoons—and tidying up
too. According to research from the American Cleaning Institute
(ACI), 62% of those surveyed said Spring cleaning is an annual
ritual in their home.
But that doesn’t mean they like it. The reality is, very few consumers actually like—and we mean really, really enjoy—tasks
like mopping the floor, cleaning the toilet and disinfecting the
kitchen counter. Homeowners would much rather be doing anything else, with a few exceptions (like hanging out with the in-laws, for instance.)
A recent survey conducted by consumer publication Real
Simple and the nonprofit research organization Families and
Work Institute shows just how much women (the ones who still
do most of the housekeeping) loath keeping up with household
chores. When asked which chore they would like to get off their
to-do lists, women overwhelmingly replied“cleaning.”
Makers of chemical specialties—those aerosols, disinfectants and
sanitizers that keep homes tidy and healthy—are in a tough spot for
sure. Imagine trying to build rapport with a consumer whose main
goal is to spend as little time as possible with your product.
“People don’t like to spend time cleaning,” admitted Alison
Gutterman, president of Jelmar, maker of CLR and Tarn-X brands.
As expected, the sluggish economy has been hard on the chemical specialties market.
According to SymphonyIRI Group, the Chicago-based market
research firm, sales of household cleaners in US supermarkets,
drugstores and mass merchandise outlets (excluding Walmart)
fell 1.4% to $1.44 billion dollars for the 52 weeks ended Jan. 22,
2012. Unit sales declined 3.34% to 474.3 million (see chart on p. 58
for more details).
But luckily, cleaning isn’t discretionary (in most homeowner’s
“Even with the slow economy, people must still clean their
homes; they just have less time to so do because they’re spending more time working and just trying to make ends meet,” said
Cheryl Holliday, general manager of the household division for
BioLab, makers of Greased Lightning cleaners.
According to Holliday, Greased Lighting has “consistently
offered affordably-priced products for consumers who have less
time on their hands.” One of the brand’s main benefits is its versatility, and along those lines has recently updated select SKUs to
showcase the many places and scenarios in which consumers can
use the products. In addition, the company last month rolled out
Greased Lightning Multi-Purpose Cleaner in a spring rain scent.