Get closer to consumers
Multiple reasons for the shift in power can be found, but one major impact can be identified easily. COVID-19 made leading tech companies to undertake comprehensive portfolio and strategy reviews, redefining their business models and their way to sustainable growth.
Pandemic not only empowered consumers in their online activities by radical digitalization efforts, it made them even more open to the “convenient way” of purchasing goods. A study of fore fronter Deloitte found, that 8 out of 10 consumers today expect their trusted brand to get closer as ever, abandoning retail for the time being. Hello D2C!
One could say that it becomes natural and expected for consumers to buy desired products and services directly from their favourite provider, more and more uninviting retail from the party. But it isn’t only for the pandemic to impact consumer electronics heavily.
Omni presEnt Social CommERCE
Manufacturers, OEMs for that respect, don’t rely on their own webshops as showcases anymore. The vast amount of additional sales and marketing channels, increasing on daily base, sets the scene for the new clash between brands and retail. Newly established competitors, direct- or micro-brands, even increase the pressure to an unbearable extent.
But it’s not just the industrial side that profits from new weapons. Consumer empowerment has a huge impact, too, riding on the waves of “customer experience” or even “customer success” pathways.
Consumers want it all. They push online for becoming almost like on-site, store that is. New tools like Xoonio even extend the boundaries, making shop visits real social events. And that is, what consumers missed for quite a long time. That “new social”, live, interactive, convenient and safe at the same time becomes a new standard for shopping.
So, what’s on today’s menu?
For OEMs it is like finding an audience that was waiting for them for so long to become actively involved. Apple showed the way, at least partially and others will follow. New D2C flagship stores are opened all around the world, providing an unfiltered and undistracted engagement with your favourite brand.
But again, it is not just that. OEM’s menu must be extended for the social part of buying stuff. Perfectly designed 8K movie-like advertisings have lost a bit of spark based on the emotional and social gap during pandemic. People want to party with their brands together with their social environment. Social Video has its saying, live interactive access to products, being discussed with others in “look-a-like” shops, online of course, will push boundaries of traditional brands and retail in particular.
I recently read a nice tagline that describes it almost perfectly: “Where we are going, we don’t need stores”. Well, almost perfectly said. Of course, stores are needed, but the definition of it will become blurrier in the future, opening way for great new innovative experiences in the D2C world. As a result, brands will regain their direct power to consumers, trying to avoid the retail “filter”. If it just wasn’t for the cost reduction, the sheer hunger for unfiltered data will do the rest to make D2C a competitor for the fist place in that never ending games called revenue and profit.