• At the core of product digitization lies the essential concept of digital twins, which assists brands with diverse business needs.
  • It seamlessly integrates digital capabilities into physical products, bestowing businesses with a wide array of strategic advantages.

“At least 40% of all businesses will die in the next ten years… if they don’t figure out how to change their entire company to accommodate new technologies.” — John Chambers, Cisco.

Nowadays, customers are expressing a growing interest in aspects such as sustainability, product safety, authenticity verification, and visibility into the origins of their goods.

In a landscape where brands have digitized nearly every process and data byte, most products lack a digital footprint or substantial information once they leave the loading dock. This gap is where product digitization steps in as a brand’s greatest ally.

What is the Concept of Product Digitization?

Product digitization entails granting physical products and their packaging a digital presence. This means these products can connect with the digital world and share important information with the brand.

In our digital era, we’re accustomed to real-time updates on various aspects of our lives, from tracking grocery deliveries to their expected arrival times. However, the majority of products we purchase remain outside this digital ecosystem.

Consider fresh herbs as an example; they cannot interact with you or your smart devices, cannot provide recall information, or communicate with sorting machines at recycling centers. Digitized products, on the other hand, possess the capability to communicate seamlessly with their surroundings.

In the case of fresh herbs, digitization allows brands to track:

  • Where and when the contents were picked.
  • The safety of the contents.
  • Information on the specific food product and the type of plastic for proper recycling.

This information gives a complete view of the supply chain, from when you have the product to when it’s recycled. In simpler terms, having this data offers many ways to strengthen your company’s supply chain by:

The above product digitization example acts as a fundamental guide. For a more nuanced understanding, we’ll immerse ourselves in a case study to extract practical insights.

Case Study: How Did Product Digitization Unite Coca-Cola with Consumers?

Daily, nearly 2 billion servings of Coca-Cola beverages are consumed globally. The global beverage giant sought a solution to enhance direct connections with consumers and offer personalized mobile experiences.

What did Coca-Cola do?

They partnered with Digimarc for a campaign urging consumers to interact digitally with 18 special Coke Zero cans in Germany. The innovation behind this campaign allowed consumers to interact digitally by scanning these special cans. Scanning not only entered them in a soccer jersey giveaway contest but also activated a personalized, context-specific experience tied to product SKU, time, date, and geolocation.

What were the results?

  • The campaign surpassed expectations in engagement and conversion rates.
  • Coca-Cola’s website saw a 10% traffic boost from users scanning the products.

Following the campaign’s success, Coca-Cola explored opportunities beyond the borders of Germany. It formed direct digital connections with consumers in 28 markets across Europe and North America, constituting a major milestone for the company.

Coca-Cola’s success in meeting engagement goals highlights the significance of product digitization. This valuable tool, driven by digital twins technology, goes beyond by fostering knowledge creation and automating business processes.

How Can Product Digitization Provide Value?

Digital twins are a fundamental aspect of product digitization, offering brands support for various business requirements. The knowledge creation and automation capabilities of digital twins are virtually limitless.

Digital twins, armed with accurate packaging component information, can automate material identification, leading to more precise and efficient sortation.

It also excels in automating customer engagement. When consumers scan the QR code on the product, they can activate rule-based events such as initiating a drip email campaign. Incorporating geolocation logic enhances this feature, offering contextually relevant information in-store or at home, like product specs, promotions, or usage instructions.

Therefore, digital twins help track your products in the following ways:

  • By verifying product authenticity
  • By providing first-party insights
  • By ensuring packaging visibility
  • By aggregating data in a centralized location
  • By furnishing recycling support

Going ahead, the infusion of digital technologies into traditional products extends beyond simple modernization, paving the way for heightened efficiency, innovation, and connectivity.

Explore the array of benefits businesses enjoy through product digitization:

  • Companies can get improved tracking of individual items using unique digital identities, ensuring more accurate monitoring for companies.
  • Companies can access centralized product intelligence anytime, anywhere, providing valuable insights into the digital interactions of their digitized products.
  • Companies can unveil a common ecosystem of interoperable applications that empower them with new capabilities and promote collaborative efforts with partners.
  • Companies can benefit from automating processes and workflows triggered by real-time product data, allowing for intelligent interactions in the digital world.
  • Companies can gain a direct brand-owned communications channel that addresses consumer demands for exceptional digital experiences, providing them with a means to deliver desired information efficiently.

To sum up, the profound benefits of product digitization in business are apparent. Let’s clarify the distinctions by examining “what is digitalization,” as the proximity of digitization and digitalization may lead to confusion.

Digital Duel: Product Digitization Vs. Product Digitalization

“Product digitization” and “product digitalization” play pivotal roles in guiding businesses through the intricacies of the digital landscape, fundamentally influencing how products are conceptualized, crafted, and encountered in our increasingly interconnected world.

Let’s distinguish between them:

Product Digitization Product Digitalization
Product digitization, meaning the shift of physical products or attributes into digital formats. It involves a comprehensive transformation of the entire product lifecycle.
It uses technologies like QR codes, RFID tags, or digital twins. It includes integrating digital technologies from design and manufacturing to distribution and usage.
It enables better tracking, monitoring, and interaction with physical products. It enhances efficiency, collaboration, and innovation in all aspects of the product lifecycle.

 In summary, product digitization involves representing physical products digitally, while product digitalization encompasses a comprehensive transformation, leveraging digital technologies throughout the entire product lifecycle for holistic improvements.

Product Digitization Heralds the Future

Global product digitization utilizes digital technologies to improve products globally, promoting connectivity, efficiency, and innovation. Through the integration of digital technologies, products gain the ability to transcend geographical constraints, fostering seamless communication and collaboration on a global scale. This interconnected ecosystem propels efficiency, facilitates real-time data exchange, and sparks innovative solutions by positioning global product digitization at the forefront of modern business practices.

Finally, the future of product digitization envisions a seamless integration of advanced technologies that enhance product intelligence and connectivity. As artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things evolve, products will become smarter, more responsive, and capable of delivering personalized experiences.

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