With Social Media through the pandemic - Interview with Alexandra Batsch, ONLINE

ONLINE Schreibgeräte is one of the leading manufacturers of pens and accessories for school, office and leisure purposes. The family-run business in Bavaria was founded by Alexandra and Thomas Batsch in 1991 and has since stood for quality, functionality, innovation and design. In our interview with Managing Director Ms Batsch, we find out more about the company's online presence and what podcast enthusiasts can't afford to miss at the moment.

Your company, ONLINE Schreibgeräte, has been represented at Insights-X since the very beginning and it did not miss out on the chance to take part in the digital edition, Insights-X Online, in 2020. What are you looking forward to when the orange carpets will be rolled out again in Nuremberg in October 2021?

When the gates open again in Nuremberg in October, we’re looking forward to meeting all our customers, exhibitor colleagues and all the other contacts that make an actual on-site trade fair a special experience after the long lockdown.

Do you have any new products up your sleeve for Insights-X 2021 that you can already tell us about?

In October, we’ll certainly be showcasing some new products for 2022; the focus will be on School ‘22, but there’ll also be some new products for the creative sector.

Your brand was mainly famous for school supplies and rollerball pens. Now watercolour, calligraphy and brush pens make up a large part of your range. How did this reorientation come about?

Writing with ink has been in ONLINE Schreibgeräte’s DNA from the start. As the trend towards paint, ink and hand lettering intensified, it was obvious that we should take up this trend revolving around creative writing.

On social media and via your website, you offer workshops to go with your creative products. Why did you decide to approach your customers via these channels and how is what you offer being received?

Social media channels lend themselves as new platforms for communication – with our retail partners as well as with our customers and our community. Our main target group are the young and creative people who particularly like using these channels, so it makes sense that we use them to communicate the appropriate campaigns.

What’s the difference between addressing target groups via online channels and in bricks-and-mortar retail outlets?

When you use online channels, you can reach these target groups quickly and in line with their interests; communication is uncomplicated and direct. In bricks-and-mortar shops, it’s primarily the personal advice and the service offered that customers rate highly.

Because of the pandemic, a lot of people are now more open to taking part in online events. Do you think that online events will continue to play an important role in the future?

Since the pandemic, with all the impacts on our everyday lives, we are all constantly learning. In the meantime, online events have also become an integral part of our everyday working lives, and even permeate into our private leisure time. I look forward to enjoying face-to-face contact with people after the pandemic. But experience also teaches us that online formats can be very efficient and provide a great deal of flexibility. That’s why we’ll keep many of these new methods in the future.

Since the beginning of March, ONLINE Schreibgeräte has been producing its own podcast called “Letter Love”. What can listeners look forward to with your podcast?

If you’re interested in creative personalities and their careers, this is the place to be. The artists introduce themselves in conversation – and reveal many a secret from their lives.

Many thanks for the interview!