Industrial Automation

Industry Update: 16.01.2021

Vertical: Industrial Automation
Type: B2B
Covid Impact on Demand: Positive
Covid Impact on Ability to Supply: Negative
Viable Transition/Readjustment: Yes

We’re just ordinary people.

The business world now recognises that pandemic conditions are here to stay.

SoPro have direct access to several hundred B2B marketing operations, spanning 60+ verticals. In recent weeks we have seen major movement in global sentiment, shifting from defensive tactics to proactive strategy as realisation sets in.

We are now witnessing the largest and most complex change management project in the history of humankind.

The worlds businesses are rapidly readjusting to compete in a new world. Here’s how.

Industrial Automation, what are we seeing?

In the short term we are seeing significant impact to the industrial automation sector. Lockdown triggered closures and mothballing of capacity at production plants, warehouses and mining and extraction facilities across the world. The subsequent the cancellation of over 100 annual manufacturing and automation global conferences will effect information sharing, marketing and sales globally, slowing the recovery further.

Mid term concern is that many of the largest consumers of automation technology have slashed capital expenditures for 2020 to counter the collapse in consumer and material demand during the global lockdown. On the plus, we are seeing huge demand for businesses willing to pivot to use their technology to create new products and/or support the production of vital facilities.

Longer term, with expectations of remnant social distancing regulations expected to reduce workforce density in nearly all settings, there will be a natural requirement to accelerate the transition to fully automated production cycles.

What do these businesses need to do now?

1. Adjust your business targeting

We are seeing manufacturers using their technology to bring innovative new products to several new sectors including the medical and pharmaceutical markets to handle the surge in demand for equipment and to perform further research.

Seek international buyers if you can support global distribution. As the pandemic evolves, new opportunities will be available; we can help you identify and target these sectors and businesses.

Consider targeting countries with more stringent lockdown measures, automation will play an increasingly key factor in many sectors by enabling businesses to re-open in accordance with newly enforceable local distancing rules. Those locations with tighter rules will experience greater demand.

2. Review your marketing channels
B2B Direct Mail




Paid Search


Networking dinners/drinks & Partner Events


Tradeshows and Exhibitions


Awards Circuit


Door to door sales


Word of mouth


Social Media


Digital Outreach i.e. B2B prospecting


3. Revise your proposition

Identify high demand sectors that you can service. If possible, (a) tailor your offering to help businesses to safely and compliantly restart facilities with reduced workforce density, and (b) directly help prospects capture and service the current un-serviced demand. Can you support the manufacture of the products and devices most in need right now? Can production be configured to meet additional international quality standards and tender specifications? There is huge international demand at the moment so it is worth pursuing a universal compliance level to support global supply where possible.

4. Revise your messaging

Revise messaging to set out how your proposition directly contributes to overcoming the current challenges. Namely that automation is the logical choice to reduce dependency on human workforces, not to mention the increasing costs and regulatory challenges associated with a non-automated workforce.

In the medical and pharmaceutical sector, buyers need devices on site immediately. Production speed is critical. As the pandemic evolves many businesses that were previously frozen during lockdown are having new requirements imposed on them in order to operate or reopen; hairdressers, retailers, restaurants, travel sector, etc. These requirements vary between countries, they are often revealed at short notice and are not always as expected. Overall this produces a huge, but complex opportunity across the global automation space and it is likely the most innovative and adaptive vendors will win out.

Set out attractive commercial terms if able.

5. Drop the experts a line

At SoPro, business growth is what we do, and we've got the tech and team to quickly generate a healthy pipeline for your business. Our expert team are ready to discuss your campaign today.

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Nick Washington-Jones, Managing Director, Tack UK

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