Digital campaigns help reach the target group, which primarily obtains information online. That’s why Verena Meier and Malte Glosemeyer specifically include online activities in the marketing measures for sales of the AEG brand. In the interview, the two report on the importance of close cooperation with suppliers and retail partners – and how socialPALS can efficiently support this with a trade marketing platform!
Digital TMO & Campaign Specialist DE/AT | Electrolux
Head of Wellbeing & SDA DE/AT | Electrolux
Verena und Malte, please tell us something about you and your roles at Electrolux!
Sure, we would love to!
Verena: At Electrolux, I’m part of the digital retail marketing team responsible for running campaigns for our retailers, across both small and large appliances for the AEG brand. Among other things, I plan which campaigns we want to run, book them and send the necessary material to the retailers, all in cooperation and coordination with my colleagues. The evaluation of the campaigns is also part of my job. Since April of this year, the topic of socialPALS has also been in my hands. This means I am responsible for project management involving socialPALS, developing new campaigns and coordinating individual activities.
Malte: I have worked in sales since April 2011 and have held several positions here. Most recently as Sales Manager Germany and since 01 September as Head of Sales Wellbeing & SDA for Germany and Austria. In this area, I am responsible for operational management, coordinating sales activities, and overseeing personnel and budget.
You have been using socialPALS since 2019 to provide your retail partners with high-quality AEG campaign content. Why did you decide to integrate this form of automated retail marketing into your communication concept?
Malte: Our retail partners are an essential and valued pillar to us – especially as they act as intermediaries between our customers and us. They inspire the utmost trust and support us in anchoring awareness of our premium brand AEG with its sustainable and innovative concepts and products. To achieve this, we want to provide them with high-quality content tailored precisely to their needs. With socialPALS, we succeed in doing just that!
What was the goal of previous campaigns?
Verena: Our primary goal is to strengthen the presence of the AEG brand for in-store retail. In addition, we strive for a uniform appearance in our brand’s image and text language across all channels. Through socialPALS, we have the opportunity to supply the brick-and-mortar retailers with our premium content and to play it out via the channels of our dealers on social media and Google Display – without great effort for the retailer.
How difficult was it to motivate your retail partners to participate? Is the "online marketing" module accepted as an integration into the sales concept?
Malte: Our campaign for the AEG ULTIMATE 8000 cordless vacuum cleaner required little persuasion. All the retailers took part without hesitation and were impressed by the content. The online marketing module was also very well received by all participants.
Participation in a socialPALS campaign and the playout of the turnkey content calendar is confirmed by all retail partners involved after a one-time registration via 1-Click. Were there also retail partners who took a closer look at the platform and, for example, planned (additional) postings or advertising budget themselves?
Are you planning campaigns for other brands or product categories to support your retail partners? Most retailers made use of the ready-made posts and played them out. Some merchants have dealt more intensively with socialPALS and manually scheduled individual posts. The confirmation of the content calendar and, thus, the playout of the finished content per 1-click is a tremendous advantage for the retailers and an essential argument for choosing socialPALS.
Have you been able to extract any useful insights from the campaigns you've run so far - for example, which channels are best suited to the product you're promoting?
Verena: For us, Google Ads seems an excellent way to generate clicks on our ads since the right target group can be addressed there, and potential customers are made aware of our AEG brand and the advertised product. Being able to track the campaign in general and the individual ads, in particular, is a great help in assessing the success of the campaigns, gaining experience, and carrying these learnings into subsequent campaigns.
Do you see an advantage in that retailers generally offer several device categories and that there are overlaps, e.g. in onboarding by the sales force?
Verena: The fact that retailers, after a one-time onboarding, have the opportunity to be invited and participate in various AEG campaigns across all product categories allows them to take advantage of a broader selection of premium content. In addition, the simplicity for sales reps is that even while planning a new campaign, retailer interest can be inquired about at short notice. In the following step, retailers only need to be invited or added to the respective campaign online. Retailers can then confirm or customize the existing content calendar and are once again involved in the upcoming campaign.
What challenges do you currently see for AEG / Electrolux, as well as for your retail partners? Is the still ongoing supply chain issue affecting the industry? Are customers postponing significant purchases such as home appliances indefinitely due to the economic situation? Is the multitude of such "crises" also changing the requirements for local marketing in the long term?
Malte: The home appliance industry has grown significantly in the past two years and has benefited enormously from trends such as cocooning, homing and home office. Here, we are seeing growth in our advanced AEG technologies. However, we are realistic about the future: we expect a general reduction in demand in the coming months due to inflationary pressure and the energy crisis. We are in close communication with our suppliers to best minimize supply chain constraints and support our trading partners in getting our high-quality AEG appliances to consumers on time. In addition to relevant innovations, especially in the area of sustainability, we continue to build on our strong partnership with retailers, who are indispensable support for us.
As a retail marketing platform, how can socialPALS help you meet these challenges?
Verena: Through socialPALS, we can reach our customers more effectively and intensively and bring them closer to our products, features, innovations, and sustainable actions and campaigns. Even in these times, we want to offer our customers excellent, sustainable products and give them a positive view of the future!
How do you see the future of brick-and-mortar retail in the context of the market power of the big online players, price search engines, etc.? Does the local household appliance store still have a chance if it invests in digital measures now? Or is it too late?
Malte: Recently, we have seen a trend away from online retailing and towards buying from local retail partners on-site. Above all, the advice of experts is a significant advantage over online retailing. Digital campaigns help considerably to reach our target group that primarily obtains information online. That’s why we include online activities in our sales marketing measures.
Are you already planning campaigns for other brands or product categories to support your retail partners?
Verena: We plan to carry out further campaigns in cooperation with socialPALS in 2023 and to activate even more retailers for socialPALS and AEG’s campaigns. We would also like to cover several different product categories to reach a broader spectrum of interested customers and win over more retailers to join AEG and socialPALS as part of our retail marketing efforts.
Here's what the retailers say:
We successfully participated in the AEG campaign. The varied image motifs and texts were very well received. The posts are easy to plan and can also be customized on request. At the start of the campaign, socialPALS call you personally and help if required. All in all, very satisfied. We will continue!
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