All business owners know it’s important to listen to their customers. But how many delve into that insight to better understand customer needs and act on those business opportunities instead of filing the knowledge away as good to know? Gutterglove®’s founder is among the few who take action, and the company’s recent milestone of outfitting over one million single-family homes with the Nation’s Most Trusted Gutter Guards® proves the value of that mindset.
It all began before Gutterglove was an idea in visionary founder Robert Lenney’s mind as he listened to the concerns of his tree care company’s customers about their gutters. Here’s how that transformed the course of his business and the gutter industry.
Tree Care Customers Planted the Idea
In the late 1990s, Lenney owned a successful tree care company located in Northern California. It was during this time customers made him and his team aware that the trees the company maintained often posed problems for their gutters.
Lenney looked at this as a business opportunity to fulfill an additional customer need and expanded his tree care company’s services to include gutter cleaning. Over the next few years, his team cleaned millions of feet of gutters. In 2000, Lenney formally incorporated this thriving business.
Branching Into Gutter Repair and Installation
Lenney’s expanded company continued to grow and included customers such as Stanford University and prominent skyscrapers in San Francisco. During this time, the company further evolved to fulfill yet another customer need beyond gutter cleaning: repair and installation services.
However, the prevalence of poorly designed gutter guards in the market became a recurring issue when performing these services. After removing countless ineffective gutter guards for their customers, the team found it impossible to recommend any of the available products in good conscience.
Again, Lenney listened to customer needs, and the team decided to take matters into their own hands and develop a new gutter solution. As such, the team explored new designs and the best materials to create an extensive patented portfolio of the highest-quality gutter guards available.
In 2003, Lenny poured his focus into the mission to provide customers with a premium product that protects one of their most valuable assets — their homes. To address customer issues with previous gutter products, Gutterglove introduced an innovative design featuring stainless-steel micro-mesh securely affixed within an anodized aluminum frame.
The company chose the specific materials to eliminate the risks of rusting, cracking, or warping, which were common among inferior products in the market. What’s more, the decision to permanently secure the mesh into the aluminum gutter frame ensured it would not peel or detach, another issue plaguing subpar products at the time.
Innovation Keeps Gutterglove Thriving
As indicated by a 2021 gutter guard industry report conducted by the Freedonia Group, a division of MarketResearch.com, the demand for gutter guards is projected to experience a steady annual revenue increase in the coming years.
To maintain its competitive edge, Gutterglove focuses on not only products but also programs and technology for the home improvement space. The company manufactures gutter guards and accessories designed to protect any home, regardless of roof type or gutter size, and they offer both do-it-yourself and professionally installed product options.
However, their innovation extends beyond products into new programs and technology that deliver seamless support to customers and contractors nationwide as well. Gutterglove firmly believes that the customer’s experience is just as crucial as the quality of its products.
The company continues to seek customer feedback to refine its designs and materials actively and, as a result, amassed an impressive patent portfolio. Gutterglove’s commitment to quality and innovation is unmatched.
When asked about the company’s milestone of outfitting over one million single-family homes, current CEO Matt Smith states, “I am so proud of all the great work that our team members have done over the years to listen carefully to what matters most to our customers. We use this feedback to keep the spirit of innovation alive and well at Gutterglove 20 years after we first went to market with a gutter guard. We are so grateful that homeowners have chosen to protect their homes with Gutterglove technology. We couldn’t have done this without the support of all the suppliers, distributors, contractors, and homeowners that we serve.”