Get in Touch
With Our Experts
+49 711 / 75886-600
Please Type A Message
Let us know where we can contact you
Please click to start verification
Send message
Thank You For Your Message!
We will contact you as soon as possible.
Close Window

5 Questions with Tobias Schlotter

20 July 2021
Ida Lorenz
As General Manager Central & Eastern Europe, Tobias Schlotter leads Akeneo's fortunes in over ten countries. He studied International Business & Management and gained more than ten years of experience in the technology environment before joining Akeneo and their vision of Product Experience Management (PXM) in 2015. Together with partners and an ever-growing local team, he has successfully managed PIM & PXM projects over the past years.


Tobias Schlotter
What impact does the digital transformation have on your customers?

If you don't pull the lever now and go digital at full speed, you may be out of business tomorrow. The days of advertising pillars and fax are long gone. There are more and more digital touchpoints that require a quick rethink. The change in customer communication also has an internal impact on companies: They have to simplify and optimise processes in order to be able to serve this multitude of channels and must not lose sight of the bigger picture. Our customers have understood that. They know how important a single source of truth is to work collaboratively on the product experience, which in turn is a prerequisite for a unique customer experience. Companies can only grow if the customer experience is right.

What are the key trends in e-commerce?

Since Corona, e-commerce has experienced an acceleration. There is practically nothing that cannot be bought online. But how can I stand out from competitors in this oversupply? That's the big question from which the current trends are growing.

Personalisation is one of these trends. We know from our studies that people are willing to pay more for a product if they are provided with the right information. A new customer in a shop has different needs than someone who has ordered there more often. Someone who bought a box of wine three months ago will probably be happy to be asked if they want a refill. Through personalisation, we create positive customer experiences.

Another trend is diversification. More and more companies are setting up their own subject-specific digital marketplaces. Manufacturers face the challenge that they cannot provide the same information to all platforms, keyword duplicate content. So they have to diversify product information even more.

The third trend concerns after sales. After being neglected for a long time, large industrial companies are now starting to digitalise this area. Our customer Volkswagen Heritage, for example, has set up a great online shop for spare parts for young and classic cars. Those who used to search with difficulty in the scrap yard to find a spare part for their old VW Beetle are now only a few clicks away.

What are the three biggest advantages a company gains with the introduction of a PIM?

The company regains control over its data. Sounds simple, but it is not natural. It's not without reason that countless lorem ipsum product texts and image placeholders haunt the relevant platforms. Incorrect or incomplete product data is the most frequent reason for returns. For example, we were able to enable our client Melvin & Hamilton to reduce the return rate by adding the attribute "fit width" to the product description. The end customer now knows at a single look whether the shoe is more suitable for narrow or normal feet - and saves himself the disappointment of trying it on at home. But a PIM system does not only make customers happy, but also employees! Stupid copy-and-paste in Excel sheets kills all creativity at some point. If a PIM makes this work superfluous, employees have more time to create a real product experience - with a lot of passion, fun and creativity. And last but not least, a PIM makes companies fit for the future. No matter what new digital channel shoots out of the ground tomorrow: The push of a button is enough to fuel the channel with up-to-date and relevant product information.

Why do clients choose a data strategy with Akeneo?

We often hear from our customers that we are not just selling a piece of software, but are partners at eye level who have a genuine interest in them and the subject. Furthermore, we offer the fastest developing system on the market. Since our PIM is based on open source technology, our customers know that they are relying on a future-proof, secure system. It is very efficient to maintain - the Tesla of PIMs, so to speak. Another strength is its simplicity, it can be used intuitively. Onboarding an employee takes one and a half hours. In project implementation, we are two to three times faster than the market average. And not to forget: Intuitive software that they can master quickly motivates employees immensely.

What advice would you give to companies planning a product experience management project?

Be courageous! Try out new things, make mistakes. Mistakes are good, because they allow you to make adjustments and move forward quickly. Don't give in to the temptation to build castles of thought for half a year and only then move on to implementation. I guarantee you: Your assumptions from back then will be outdated and no longer fit.

Get the right people on board! Class instead of mass. A PXM project always has an immediate effect on corporate strategy and sales. So management must be fully behind the project and give everyone involved the necessary freedom. Talk to the people who will ultimately shape the customer experience, such as sales and marketing.

Exchange experiences! Talk to companies that walked this path before you. This can be a real treasure trove of experience that will save you from making mistakes and show you valuable perspectives.

Ihr Webbrowser ist veraltet

Aktualisieren Sie Ihren Browser damit diese Webseite richtig dargestellt werden kann.

Zur Infoseite