LIXIL makes pioneering water and housing products that solve everyday, real-life challenges, making better homes a reality for everyone, everywhere.
Updated: June 15, 2021.
Halfway through 2021, the pandemic continues to affect the world. We are still adjusting to “the new normal” in all aspects of life, trying to find the right balance; keeping a “social” distance but trying to remain close; challenging new lifestyles but staying true to our values. This unprecedented time is fast-tracking change for individuals, companies, and entire industries – including all things digital.
The results of a McKinsey survey show that the crisis has accelerated the digitalization of customer interactions by several years. According to the study, at least 80 percent of customer interactions are now digital in nature.¹ In order to adapt to the rapidly evolving nature of digitization and respond to changing consumer behavior, companies are being challenged to provide more personal experiences.
Breaking with well-known practices and embracing challenges by way of new opportunities is key to successfully embarking on a digital transformation. For LIXIL, this means elevating from the norms of a traditional manufacturer by bringing the company even closer to the consumer, supporting business partners and empowering its people. Within its digital revolution, which is transforming its existing and creating new businesses, its digital experience hub GROHE X shows how this idea can be transitioned into reality.
Consumers are more willing than ever to engage online, yet they equally seek what "real" life doesn’t offer in the current climate: unique experiences. Combining both, GROHE, one of LIXIL’s leading global water product brands, launched its industry-first digital platform. Here, visitors have the opportunity to create their own individual brand experience, coursing a journey through a mix of informative and inspiring multimedia content tailored to the needs and interests of business partners and consumers.
Available so far in four different languages, GROHE aims to add real value to the daily life of its customers: how-to videos for the latest shower systems, training programs to improve retail sales skills, and 360° rooms that allow architects and designers to immerse themselves in new product highlights – always available on demand. GROHE X also breaks down barriers: formats such as ‘A Glass of Water with…’, provide behind-the-scenes glimpses of the many different faces of the brand, from manufacturing to technology and design, through a series of interviews.
Under the motto "Discover what's next," the platform is driving new ways of interaction: business partners can use the platform to make appointments with their sales contacts and exchange information directly about the innovations introduced on the platform, while various events like panel talks invite guests to directly discuss the future of living spaces with experts.
Originally intended as an alternative to the biennial ISH, the world’s leading trade fair for water technology, GROHE X is just the beginning of a personalized digital ecosystem that will define engagement with consumers and partners in the years to come. It successfully fills the current vacuum, but it is more than a pandemic-related trade fair substitute - a digital platform to be joined by hybrid online-offline and truck tour events in the imminent future.
So far, GROHE X has proven to boost engagement dramatically: during its launch week in March, the platform hosted more than 68,000 visits from 140 countries. On the first day alone, GROHE welcomed 4,000 guests to its keynote and panel talks on consumer insights or ‘Green Buildings’.
“We were blown away by the positive feedback from our consumers, suppliers, and other stakeholders. GROHE X is a true milestone for the brand. It opens up unprecedented opportunities to experience GROHE; from discovering products to informing our stakeholders about what drives us to do what we do. We have embarked on a new journey with GROHE X, and it’s a truly authentic and digital one,” says Jonas Brennwald, Leader LIXIL EMENA.
One thing is clear: In the future, companies will have to prove themselves more and more in the digital world. While consumers are embracing new means to adapt to the change, preferences and customs of businesses have also changed dramatically within the last year. B2Bs say omnichannel works—and even surpasses past approaches. Eight in ten B2B decision makers say that omnichannel is as or more effective than traditional methods. Around 85 percent of B2B decision makers worldwide expect remote and digital business practices to stick around for the long run. About 2 in 3 buyers prefer remote human interactions or digital self-service.²
LIXIL's digital journey started with a series of explorative initiatives before even the pandemic, but the company stands firm on its commitment to leverage digital in creating true value. GROHE X proves that its employees are driven to do just that.
“My biggest thanks go to the team who made all this possible while working remotely. I’m extremely proud of the courage and leadership they demonstrated in taking an idea, and developing it into something that redefines how we can continue to deliver ’Pure Freude an Wasser’ - the joy of water - online,” says Brennwald.