RS looks beyond ‘Facebook for the engineer’
It is almost two years since RS launched its online design community called DesignSpark.
What perhaps started as a testing of the water for what some called “Facebook for the engineer” has developed into something more interesting for the distributor.
“It is a marketing channel,” Ian Mason, chief executive of Electrocomponents, owner of RS, told Electronics Weekly.
For Mason and RS the website is all about engagement with the engineer. It is definitely not about Facebook or Twitter.
It is all about giving the distributor a bigger presence in the design community.
For example, the distributor has seen a three-fold increase in the sales of microcontroller development kits since the launch of DesignSpark.
“DesignSpark is changing the perception of RS in the market, it is light and day in just 18 months,” says Mason.
So it is seeding the market, now Mason wants to see that turned into a further increase in silicon sales.
The important thing is it is about specifics, not woolly stuff, not communities, we are not here to have a nice chat, we want to make sales,” says Mason.
So is RS seeing direct monetary value coming from DesignSpark. “It is a bit early to talk of that yet,” says Mason.