Making an impact: New Electrolux CMO shares his plans

Electrolux new Chief Marketing Officer Lars Hygrell, who stepped into his new role earlier this month, talks about what’s first on his agenda, his mission to make marketing more ‘impactful’ and why connectivity gives Electrolux a fantastic opportunity to be invaluable to the consumer.

So what’s first on the agenda in your CMO Role?

We have a big opportunity at Electrolux to really set ourselves apart from the competition, delivering a truly best-in-class consumer experience. Marketing has a big role in making this happen. At a time when consumer expectations are evolving fast with the rise of the Internet of Things and digitalization, it’s more important than ever before to make marketing more impactful and data-driven.

A key objective for me and for Electrolux to meet this challenge is to build the best team to establish a way of working that builds strong collaboration and engagement across all markets – a competitive strength to Electrolux. We need to identify and where needed, add the right expertise and competence to support the transformational marketing agenda for the coming years. So whether it’s in digital transformation, consumer experience, brand strategy, ownership or marketing effectiveness, to mention a few areas, we need to make sure we have the absolute best team in the industry to win in the market.

Why should the world’s sharpest marketers be attracted to Electrolux?

We come from a heritage of entrepreneurship and innovation. There’s an enormous level of creativity in our team, and the willingness to change and take on the challenges ahead of us – especially through the digital transformation – makes this an extremely interesting place to develop and grow. Here you can fully develop and collaborate with the best people in the industry to help us in becoming the number one appliance company in the world.

What can you tell us so far about the marketing agenda you hope to drive?

The mission is to make marketing more impactful, both commercially and from a brand perspective. This means we need to bring more science to marketing, to become data-driven, and there are certain focus areas to deliver on this.

Firstly, I want to evolve how we build brand desirability. We must better understand the role that each main brand plays in the portfolio and to define the branded consumer experience, the brand positioning, values and promise.

Another area of focus is of course the 360 digital transformation. Marketing is going through a tremendous transformation, becoming fully digital, with the consumer in charge, expecting full and relevant brand and product information anytime and anywhere.

Some great work has already been done at Electrolux to understand this transformation not only in our industry but also in the consumer world in terms of their purchase journey. I now hope to apply these learnings and leverage best practices around the world. This way we can take our consumers on a seamless and rewarding path to purchase using our digital tools and technology to drive conversion more effectively.

Finally, not a new area but a new focus area where we see enormous potential is through the ownership experience. If we can find ways of incentivizing our customers and making it easier and more valuable to register with us, we can start to have very valuable discussions – offering maintenance, warranty, add-on sales, recipes and so on.

We know from research that the cost of acquiring a new consumer is five to six times higher than retaining an owner to continue to stay with us and buy more of our products. We have 300-400 million appliances in people’s home around the world so there is a huge opportunity in focusing on improving loyalty.

And as connectivity develops and product registration becomes automated, we can have more individualized personal dialogues with consumers so they get more value both from the products and their relationship with us.

You mention the role of connectivity – how will this change the role of an appliance company?

With leisure time dropping, priorities have changed and our research tells us people are placing more value than ever before on the home experience. Electrolux is absolutely at the heart of this consumer need.

Our strategy is to provide remarkable experiences in the home to help people create great-tasting food, care for the clothes they wear and achieve a sense of healthy wellbeing for themselves and their loved ones. And now with the rise of the Internet of Things, this offers Electrolux a huge opportunity to shape the future of connected living.

If we at Electrolux build our brands and partnerships to be part of this connected system – and focus on our insights and our strengths to deliver an outstanding consumer experience – we will be invaluable to the consumer. We will be a part of their most important place in the world, their happy place.