Digital retail methodologies call for continuous innovation: Dassault Systemes expert

by Sricharan R 19 Dec 2020

“We can see the digital transition happening and we have to be prepared for it. And, marketing products would not be the same again,” said Matthias Szeszat, Director Strategy, Dassault Systemes, 3D Excite. He was speaking at the virtual master class on ‘Why digital services will become the predominant factor when buying a car?’, held on December `18, which was moderated by Mayank Dhingra of Autocar Professional.

“OEMs have to innovate in this space. New players like Facebook and Instagram are heavily trying to capitalise the huge audience they have. So, the overall direction is clear. It is all about when,” he added.

In the past, buying a car or a vehicle was determined by the return of investment it offers. Now, this has changed. People now look for the product value. And, digital plays a major role here. “Going forward in 2020, it is clear that both the purchase of vehicles and consumption ability is an increasing online business. Digital is changing the business. It is also developed by the demand it creates, and OEMs have to embrace the change. Many OEMs have started working towards it, but it will grow further,” he mentioned.  

Some of the key takeaways from the seminar included, marketing is changing, the value is in digital services, the power is in the ecosystem, standards drive differentiation and experience needs system-awareness. Matthias pointed out that a decade ago, we had a tough time to understand what the car is. Now, with the help of an app, we can understand everything about a car. Going forward, in a ride share with the help of digital service we may even control music or the AC. Giving out examples from various OEMs, he said, “The car and the app is fused together to give the customer an unique experience.”

When the moderator posted a question on how connectivity is going to be part of the ecosystem and whether people will accept it, the director stated, ”We are now used to connectivity in our daily lives. Though, these are just beginning and experimental, they will further grow. It will be adopted ultimately. And, once it is evolved, there will be more innovative stuff coming in. So, digital is going to be the future.”

Also, sharing his thoughts about the rural markets, Szeszat mentioned that with the pandemic, the usage of digital is being pushed forward. Though, people still value face to face interaction, there will be places where one could interact and understand about the product. But, it will be more digital. “It is the role of OEMs to bring this and orchestrate it. There is an issue governing this, but the digital service is rising and it has to be managed. Who would be better than the specific partner to have better dialogue with customers,” he concluded.