The global pandemic acted as an innovation accelerator for many industries – and the lubricant industry was no exception. Digitalization had been on the rise for more than a decade, but the crisis certainly accelerated its disruptive potential.
One area in which we have observed a clear impact of digitalization is the change to sales models. As companies could no longer rely on in-person sales due to movement restrictions, the pandemic eliminated de facto the competitive advantage of companies with an extensive sales coverage. This opened up unprecedented opportunities for SMEs, as virtual technology enabled a geographic reach that would put them on a par with larger competitors.
The ”zooming” of interpersonal connections forced by a prolonged period of social distancing and travel restrictions has opened up new business opportunities to SMEs and has prompted us to rethink our sales strategies and expand our potential market.
Another aspect of the impact of digitalization on sales is e-commerce. E-commerce of lubricants already existed prior to the global pandemic, but it has undoubtedly increased over the past two years, with several SMEs setting up an e-commerce platform or being in the process of doing so.
But how will we benefit from digitalization and how will we avoid the risk of commoditization that could come from the adoption of e-commerce?
To answer these questions and to help us develop a strong sales and marketing strategy, we have dedicated a full session of our 2022 UEIL Annual Congress to Innovation in Sales and Marketing.
Join us in the beautiful city of Athens, Greece, from October 19 to October 21 to hear more about tailoring your sales approach based on your customer needs, and about strategic and tactical aspects of e-commerce, to optimize resources, improve customer experience, and increase profitability.
I am looking forward to meeting you all there to shape together the future of our industry.