Looking back at Connecta 2020 – what will the future be like?
Due to the pandemic, Swiss Post’s “Connecta” digital conference was held as a purely digital event this year. But even in its new format, it was inspiring and remains one of the most important events in Switzerland on the topic of digitalisation. Our experts were happy to be there again. We would have been happy to support Connecta as a local partner again this year, but the infectious events in Switzerland and neighbouring countries made it necessary to change the familiar format. What the Orga team had put together, however, was more than just a substitute. Instead of simply recording the planned lectures and distributing them via the internet, a completely new programme was developed.
Consumer decision-making in the digital age
In the “Connecta Talk”, experts answered questions on current future topics in interviews. For example, on the further development of our working world: What influence will the experiences from the home office have on companies? If employees work more or less exclusively from home, will there still be a need for a boss? Or will the future lie in self-organised teams that work in a distributed manner? But what role will managers still play then? Digital commerce will also evolve. During the lockdown, online retail made a three-year leap according to all estimates. And there are no signs that consumers will break the new habit again. Dr. Nadine Hietschold presented our current study on the influence of digitalisation on customers’ purchasing decisions in the “Connecta Talk”. 100 test persons had kept detailed diaries on two decision-making processes. They were allowed to make one decision with digital aids (comparison sites, reviews, etc.), the other had to be made exclusively offline. This much can be revealed at this point: Yes, digitalisation is changing a lot. But there are also constants in the lives of consumers. Feedback from friends and family is also important in the digital context. And the basic character of people remains the same in both environments. Intuitive shoppers are online and offline. Customers who inform themselves in detail in advance and take social and environmental criteria into account in their purchasing decisions also do so in both ways.
Off to the future
The digital Connecta 2020 opened with “Connecta TV”, a round of talks moderated by digital expert and multiple media prize winner Katrin-Cécile Ziegler. As is hardly to be expected in these times, the pandemic also left its mark on the conversation. The Corona crisis brought the economy and public life to a temporary standstill. A profound deceleration. But on the other hand, an acceleration in digitalisation. Many companies had to embrace digital technologies from one day to the next in order to remain viable at all. Online retailers had to cope with a veritable run on their shops, which placed great demands on logistics. However, the discussion round did not only look back at the events and the lessons that can be learned from the special situation. After all, it is much more important to look to the future! What will remain of the special circumstances? How will the Corona crisis shape our economy, the way we work, live and consume? One of the interviewees was Prof. Tina von Däniken, who revealed her assessments at Swiss Post’s headquarters.
To the contributions
- You can watch the broadcast of “Connecta TV” here.
- What happens after the lockdown? How has it affected trading? Who are the winners and the losers, and what does the new look like? Documentary filmmaker Daniel Rytz investigated this question and conducted impressive interviews with those affected. The result is an impressive contemporary document. You can see the documentary here.
- You can watch the Connecta Talk with BFH researcher Dr. Nadine Hietschold here.