At Switzerland-based company TROX HESCO, the focus is on digital marketing and the intelligent use of data in product development. The goal is to offer professionals an innovative environment – and thus attract fresh talent to the field of ventilation and air conditioning. We talked to Managing Director Christian Frei.
Christian Frei, CEO from TROX HESCO Schweiz AG
Mr Frei, what are the core competences of your company, in your opinion?
We always try to take it one step further: that is why we not only produce and distribute, but also continuously develop our products and systems. Putting innovation into practice is becoming more and more important for us. We are particularly active in ventilation and air conditioning technology, but we are also firmly anchored in the market for fire and smoke protection.
Is this the best way to meet the current challenges in your industry?
No question. The struggle for good skilled workers is going to become more intense! Therefore, it is more important than ever to provide an environment where talent can flourish and experiment without fear of making mistakes.
What do you understand by innovative product development?
Well, to name a specific example, the further development of intelligent components that communicate with each other in an overall system and provide us with data that we in turn use to optimise the products we use.
The fact that we are continuing to push automation in production is also part of this.
How important is the internet for sales of your products?
Very important – even construction is becoming increasingly digital, and the internet is becoming more and more important as a sales channel. For example, we now also offer our customers Easy Product Finder, a software that enables the digital selection and design of our products.
Focusing on sustainability: is this an important issue for you?
Is it ever! Sustainability is a high priority throughout the TROX Group. This is also reflected in our orders; for example, we are currently planning a new building in Switzerland that will be made primarily from wood and will be supplied with both geothermal and photovoltaic energy.
What makes Visable and “Wer liefert was” so attractive for you?
First of all, its good reputation and experience in the industry. But we were also specifically looking for a partner for digital marketing, and Visable came out ahead early on. We mainly use the AdWords service: so it was important for us to work with a provider who not only knows Google, but also brings a lot of know-how from our industry.
How long have you been involved and how is the cooperation going today?
We were using “Wer liefert was” way back when it was still a catalogue! We have also been working with Google AdWords for two years. Contact with our Visable contact person, who regularly drops by in person, has been very helpful in this area. It allows us to clarify questions directly and adapt our strategy dynamically.
In other words, our AdWords service has an impact on your marketing?
Yes. As an external partner, Visable does an excellent job – so we can concentrate on other important tasks in marketing. We can see from our figures that the concept is working.
And what is your marketing department currently working on?
At the moment, we’re very active on social media: we offer insight into our everyday business and use the platforms to specifically address younger applicants. In general, we always try to provide a complete package with our employer branding strategy, because this is a decisive factor in retaining and attracting good employees today.
Another major project is currently the development of a Product Information Management (PIM) system to organise our digital data as cleanly as the analogue data.
In your view, what could “Wer liefert was” do even better?
I could imagine an exchange of experiences among the participating businesses or workshops on specific marketing topics. This would be a great extension of the existing services; after all, “Wer liefert was” has an exciting clientele.
Mr Frei, thank you so much for talking to us.