EP1: Nicolas Vanden Avenne, Ocular, How can virtual technologies contribute to a more sustainable industry?

During this interactive session, Nicolas Vanden Avenne, Founder and CEO of Ocular, and Julie Lietaer, Founder of Ariadne Innovation, discuss how virtual technologies contribute to making the industry more sustainable, based on the Xperify® case. 

(only available in audio or read the short recap below)

Some key takeaways from the session

Relevant trends:  

  • 67% of businesses use virtual events complementary to in-person events. (link)  
  • 64% of sales leaders who invested in remote selling met or exceeded revenue targets this year. Sales leaders who did not invest in remote selling fell behind. 50% of this subgroup did not hit their sales targets this year. Next year (2021), 68% of sales leaders plan to implement a hybrid or fully remote sales model. (link) 
  • 47% of event organizers say that hybrid events are a solution for connecting internationally dispersed audiences. (link

The potential of virtual technologies goes further than digitally presenting your textile products, it allows for more sustainable and efficient operational processes: 

  • Marketing: introduce your new collections digitally, directly to all your customers and prospects. 
  • Sales: 
    • Allows for more frequent and more interactive connections with (international) customers 
    • Can be smoothly integrated with existing business logic like ERP systems.  
    • Optimize time opportunities with customers by combining video interaction with experience, and make optimal use of the waiting time before the start of the call with a digital lobby. 
    • HR:  organize virtual job fairs or train employees in a very timely and cost-effective manner. 
    • Fairs and Events:  save time by plugging in your own virtual showroom for external events, or organise your own fairs and events. 
  • Textiles are tactile products, which people like to touch, how do we translate this digitally?
    • By offering a hybrid approach: combining samples (boxes), and physical booth stands with a virtual component, interested parties have all information available and can re-experience the collections at any time, from anywhere. 
    • Integrate your textile visualisation software in the showroom for a detailed product view.  
    • Combine your virtual presentation with a live product demonstration.  
    • Use the virtual application to connect with (potential) customers and gain their interest and attention.  
  • Continuous developments: use technology to optimize your product offering
    • All behaviour in the digital space can be monitored, use the insights captured during your digital meetings to anticipate the attention of your meeting participants as well as to optimize your product and service offerings. 

Ocular offers interactive technologies to bring stories to life in digital spaces. With Xperify®, Ocular developed an innovative virtual showroom platform. 

Ellie.Connect, a service by Ariadne Innovation, is a digital ecosystem for sustainable textiles. “Ellie.Talks” aim to inspire and inform the ecosystem members on various topics around textiles & technology relevant to the industry.