At the next IPM ESSEN – from 28 to 31 January 2020 – the IPM Discovery Center will focus on new findings and fresh ideas for the successful marketing of horticultural products and services. The POS World of Experience will be relocated to Hall 7 of the modernised Messe Essen venue.
Creative director Romeo Sommers and his team will be providing a platform for the “heroes” of the industry. Exhibitors will thus have a further option for the targeted presentation of their products. Visitors will be able to expand their knowledge on guided tours or during lectures in the Speakers’ Corner, and can then immediately apply what they have learned to their own business. Romeo Sommers now reveals the first details of the 2020 edition of the IPM Discovery Center in an interview.
The Discovery Center will be given a new location at the IPM ESSEN. What are the benefits of this new placement?
„The Messe Essen venue has been modernised over the last few years, and its technology is now state-of-the-art. The temporary halls that were previously home to the Discovery Center will no longer be there in 2020. We will now be setting up at the centre of events, in Hall 7. This will ensure higher visibility, and gives us access to state-of-the-art infrastructure. Exhibitors will have another attractive location where they can make their presence felt with a second platform at the IPM ESSEN.”
What topics will be focussed on at the IPM Discovery Center in 2020?
„The IPM Discovery Center is a combined show room, communication area, think tank, and hall of fame. In 2020, we want to further expand on the approach of presenting our exhibitors and their products as “heroes”. After all, the horticultural industry launches innovative products and concepts every year, and it can quite rightly be proud of that. Our aim is to generate an awareness of how this pride can be a USP. We want to make visible what it is that companies in the horticultural industry stand for. We present the visitors to the Discovery Center with selected “heroes” in the form of businesses, products and solutions. A special green plant, for example, gets labelled as a “green hero”, environmentally friendly packaging material is labelled “recycling hero”, or a young company can take part as a “start-up hero”.”
Why take the superhero angle?
„Superheroes are good for telling exciting stories, not just in comic books, but also at the point of sale. Because ultimately, it is always a question of successful storytelling. At the IPM Discovery Center, retailers will find out how to be customer-oriented when positioning themselves for the future, by telling their own story and creating an identity. Particularly now, when online shopping is on the rise, stationary retailers have the opportunity to reposition themselves.”
What might that mean in real terms?
„I believe that, particularly when it comes to horticultural products, online is about convenience, orientation and price, while offline means expertise, service and the shopping experience. The benefits of both worlds merely need to be skilfully combined. In future, individual retailers will need to react to the requirements of buyers, by offering a seamless shopping experience across all touchpoints. Mobile apps are steadily growing in importance here. They provide the customer with information about products, prices, and current stocks etc. Retailers can process this information about online behaviour by providing customers with the right offers at the right time. I see it as my task to communicate this approach to the exhibitors and visitors of the IPM Discovery Center, and to encourage them to choose unconventional but therefore all the more successful paths.”