Roborock wants to do “the right thing”

roborock logo on leafy background
Pictured: Roborock logo on leafy background
// Working towards a rock solid brand
Anula Wiwatowska
May 01, 2024
Icon Time To Read3 min read

As it embarks on the mission to grow it’s global brand, Roborock is insistent on “doing the right thing” according to Marketing Director Dan Cham. Popping up in conversations around customer lifespan, brand recognition, new products, and data privacy, “The right thing” is more of a guiding philosophy than a hard line in the sand. 

For brand building, Cham told that Roborock’s plan isn’t your usual set of KPIs and deliverables.

“That's not the correct way to go about it. What we want to do is come up with a good product, let it run in market, and then let the first batch of customers try it, and by year three of four that's where the momentum comes in.”

The robot vacuum company is in its fourth year in the Australian market, and while it currently holds the global number one position for robovac sales, it hasn’t cracked the top spot in Australia.

“I would say we have got a good first set of customers. We have got, you know, media that doesn’t hate us because it’s a shit product and people are complaining everywhere. So I think we have got a good start.”

When asked about where Roborock sits in the country right now, Cham said that the brand wasn’t chasing outcomes.

“We’re not prioritising chasing that because there are many ways to get to number one. There are many, many ways. You can go on the strategy of aggressively discounting stuff, playing price strategies. You can go on a very heavy advertising campaign that splashes marketing budget to get the exposure that you need, and you can get the conversion that you need probably because it's about that.”

“That's not what we’re chasing. We’re chasing excellence in product design, we’re chasing excellence in quality control, we’re chasing excellence in communication.”

Cham is confident that this approach will pay dividends for the brand however, telling that he’s not brushing off the possibility that in the next few years Roborock would be number one in Australia as well.

“If we continue to do our right thing.” he qualified.

This ‘right thing’ ultimately boils down to cultivating consumer trust in the Roborock brand according to Cham who told it isn’t about what the brand does per say, but about who Roborock is as a company.

“For every product that we put out, we need to make sure that it's well thought out. Is this function something that is either providing options or is it too complicated to use? Is it safe enough?”

That trust, Cham hopes, will help consumers take a leap of faith when the brand ventures into new product categories. For now however, Roborock continues to concentrate on robovacs and other household cleaning technologies. Its latest robot vacuum cleaner, the S8 MaxV Ultra, introduced the brand’s voice assistant Rocky, and a camera which is pitched as a way to keep an eye on your pets remotely. Cham acknowledged potential privacy concerns stemming from the camera and microphone on this device.

“[every Roborock product] is put through this rigorous testing and what we call certifications by a third party institute… Every model is put through this certification. And these cyber security experts would sort of run this through stress tests and make sure there’s no loopholes.”

“This is hard to do, but it's necessary. If we are doing all of this then you can be sure to place your trust in us and to buy these products and have them in your homes.”

Other Chinese-owned companies have been in the spotlight over data privacy in the past few years. Huawei and Google parted ways, TikTok needs to change ownership to continue to operate in the US, and even Roborock investor Xioami was found to be transferring user data to several parties related to the CCP. Despite being a Chinese-owned company in the current climate of mistrust, Cham says Roborock isn't feeling any additional pressure.

“If we were an American company, we would still be put through all of this scrutiny right?”

“From where we are today, we are actually practicing and acting as an international company. We have members across the globe, so regardless of nationality and what we are doing in different regions, so long as we stick to that principle of doing the right thing, the necessary things, the hard things, and the things that are important for the customer experience, we believe we can navigate through with transparency and integrity, maintaining trust with our customers worldwide."

Disclosure: This author travelled to Cairns as a guest of Roborock to attend the S8 MaxV Ultra international launch.

Anula Wiwatowska
Written by
Anula is the Content and Social Media Editor within the extended universe. Working in the tech space since 2020, she covers phone and internet plans, gadgets, smart devices, and the intersection of technology and culture. Anula was a finalist for Best Feature Writer at the 2022 Consensus Awards, and an eight time finalist across categories at the IT Journalism Awards. Her work contributed to WhistleOut's Best Consumer Coverage win in 2023.

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