- GE Appliances is seeking to hire a professional grandma and is advertising a one-year paid gig to help the company demonstrate how its new kitchen technology can simplify life, according to a press release.
- The company announced the search at CES, as it introduced the GE Appliances Kitchen Hub. Thirty "grandma interns" auditioned at the show, as the job listing and application is available online and the search is kicking off for "hip, fun and energetic grandmothers."
- To celebrate nontraditional grandmas, GE is offering a $50,000 salary for 10-15 hours a month from March 15, 2019 to March 15, 2020, plus five brand-new GE Appliances kitchen products. Candidates can submit a video online about why they are the Great American Grandma. Friends and family can submit applications on behalf of a grandma by including an interview with her.
GE Appliance is aiming to bring a "human element" to its kitchen appliance technology and is looking for a "professional grandma" to demonstrate how easy its connected kitchen appliances are to use. The stunt was inspired by the stereotypical idea that a grandma is the "antithesis of technology." Millennials and Gen Zers are widely considered the most tech-savvy generations, but older age groups are embracing more technology in their daily lives.
The messaging and spokes-grandma approach could help GE Appliances tap into consumers' interest in smart home technology by demonstrating how they work with a spokesperson who presumably will be expected to come across as authentic and relatable, something more consumers are looking for messaging from brands. Awareness of smart appliances is high at 62%, but 67% of consumers age 35 and older and 52% of those 18 to 34 say they don't know much about them or fully understand how they work, a YouGov poll revealed. Twenty-six percent of the younger age group said they were aware of smart appliances and knew about them.
Along with promoting its smart kitchen appliances, GE announced an update last fall to its Wi-Fi connected home appliances, which now work with the voice-powered Google Assistant. The change works with the brand's connected refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers, washing machines and other, which are linked to the U+ Connect app. The direct connection with Google Assistant eliminates the need to add an additional command when talking to GE appliances. Before, many had to use the Geneva Home Action for voice commands, asking questions like, "Hey Google, ask Geneva Home to preheat the oven to 425 degrees."