The world appears to be paused, we are heading for the worst economic crisis since the great depression, creativity and innovation can help to turn the tide. Here, we have a few questions for Joris Wolters, Sales and Marketing officer, at PAL-V answers a few questions for us.
Q: A lot of companies had to shut down to protect their employees for the risks of being infected. Does this affect the sales and marketing team of PAL-V as well?
The current situation is for most companies globally not ideal, but it’s given us some valuable time to reflect on the sales and marketing strategy, past, present and future. We have started to improve increase our online presence and work with new strategies, these are some of the ways that we are making big steps in building the commercial side of PAL-V.
But of course, there are also some downsides. Besides the practical benefits of the PAL-V Liberty like timesaving, flexibility and freedom, a large proportion of our customers are with us because of the experience their own PAL-V will give them. Flying and driving with one vehicle wherever they want to go. If you look for example at the trip we demonstrated from our HQ to London, just imagine what you will see when you fly over the channel, flying over the countryside and driving in London city centre. It’s an experience only a PAL-V can offer, therefore, as part of our journey with our customers we often take them flying in a gyroplane to give them a feeling of what it is like to fly a PAL-V in the near future. Bringing this experience across via online channels is a lot harder and probably not even getting close to the real experience. For sure we will be able to do it again when things turn back to normal. Myself and the whole team are really looking forward to getting our customers back up in the air and have them experience this new world of aviation.
Q: PAL-V was very active in events such as the Geneva Auto Salon. These are all cancelled by local governments. How did that change your marketing strategy?
I was already in Geneva and our stand was close to being finished before the Swiss government decided to cancel the event, this was, as you can imagine quite a shock and disappointing although completely understandable. As you may have noticed, we had to boost our online communication and be creative with new content.
We did this by introducing the World of PAL-V series to show people more of our company and give them an exclusive insight look. This is a start and we are now looking into new technologies to get more interaction via the online channels. We are actually looking into Augmented Reality to have people take a look at the PAL-V from their own living room. I’m pretty confident that we can pull it off and get you to put a PAL-V in your living room even in flight mode, although I am not sure how big your living room is, those eleven-meter rotors take some space.
Q: The PAL-V is a new form of transportation. What can a PAL-V Liberty offer when you look at crises like the COVID19 virus?
Yes, that’s another positive for the Flying car! Whatever the situation, the Liberty doesn’t require a lot to get you from A to B. You can still use small airstrips and normal highways, and during the journey you are independent of regular airlines and bigger crowded airports also avoiding unnecessary personal contact in a shared taxi or public transport in order to reach your final destination. So, you don’t rely on airlines or public transport simply go and return when it suits you.
Q: PAL-V is developing a new and innovative way of transportation, how does the current economic crisis affect the company’s vision?
A lot of businesses are affected by the economic impact of the coronavirus. The aviation industry hit hard, how long will it take before these airlines are seeing a yield of 80+ %? When there is a crisis there are also big opportunities, especially for Personal Flying Mobility. The PAL-V offers the possibility to be independent of airlines on your journey. We already have the first enquiries because of their fear of stepping in an aircraft again. Of course, the PAL-V is for short-range distances like hops from Amsterdam to Frankfurt or from Paris to Geneva, which are easily within the range of the Liberty. So, the Covid19 crisis doesn’t directly affect our market, and even gives us new opportunities. It is still our goal to become the game-changer in mobility, this doesn’t change. It gives us time to rethink a lot of our activities and develop our knowledge in areas that we haven’t been in before.
Q: How did the Covid19 virus affected your own way of living and working?
The first few weeks were quite challenging. We had to rethink our strategy and make sure that we could get the team working from home. Luckily, our IT department and HR team did a great job and we could be working from our home within a few days. As a marketing and sales team, I would say that our efficiency went up although we do miss the interaction and ‘the social talk’ which is an important part of work to me, but in the end, the only thing that counts is that everybody is safe and stays healthy.
Q: So what message would you like to send out to the followers of PAL-V and potential new customers?
Clearly, the world is changing, the new Normal will not be the same as before and now, more than ever we must embrace change, look at the world around us and adapt to the current and future needs accordingly.
We here at PAL-V believe we also have a big part to play in helping shape the “New Normal” for personal transportation. Offering a highly practical and personalized mode of transport that gives an almost unlimited freedom of choice and movement without doubt, the era of the Flying Car is soon upon us and that’s exciting.