Michelle Quintão: “What I love most about the Innovus brand is its strength and flexibility”
Sonae Arauco is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Innovus decorative brand. Launched in 2012 with the slogan “A new way to create”, the Innovus brand has travelled a long road and is now a benchmark on the market for modern, versatile, quality projects.
Michelle Quintão, Marketing Director at Sonae Arauco, has been closely following the growth of the brand. Her experience and know-how in the world of the fashion set the stage for the challenge laid down to her by the company six years ago: to turn products into inspiring solutions and to keep up with the main trends.
Michelle believes that what sets the brand apart most is its potential for creating functional, sustainable environments, without neglecting the aesthetic aspect. In this interview, she shares some of the most memorable moments and the opportunities that the subject of sustainability and the transformations in the digital world could bring to the Innovus brand.
What do you love most about Innovus?
What I love most about the Innovus brand is its strength and flexibility. Innovus makes you think of innovation… The logo reinforces the idea of continuity and the way the letters are designed adds strength to the brand. The quality of the products and the collection and their versatility give us the opportunity to work more comprehensively, keeping up with changes and the latest trends on the market.
What feelings and experiences do you associate with Innovus?
Innovus has allied itself to the mission of Sonae Arauco: to improve people's lives and to contribute to people being able to live in pleasant, functional, sustainable environments.
In addition, it’s a brand that involves a lot of creative and inspirational content and it’s very easy to turn it into real, harmonious images. All of this influences and facilitates the communication process. And when you see and touch Innovus products, this message is reinforced: quality, versatility and innovation.
What was it like to follow the growth of the Innovus brand closely?
In 2016, when I joined Sonae Arauco, Innovus had already been launched. The turning point came in 2019 with the launch of the Innovus Matching Life concept, whose goal was to align the company’s value with the brand in the launch of the new Innovus Collection.
It was all designed from scratch. From associating the logo with the construction of the Sonae Arauco name, the use of the “O” of Innovus as a force of constant change, life, evolution… In 2016, we launched a new “Sonae Arauco” and in 2019, the Innovus Collection. It was a pleasure for me to be able to witness this change.
How do you feel when you see the results of this process?
Proud! And it's very gratifying to see the growth, the recognition of the brand and our logo in the spotlight in our clients’ showrooms and on their trucks.
Of course, we still have a long way to go… Our goal is to get people asking for Innovus instead of a melamine or laminated panel… In other words, thinking of the product and immediately associating it with the Innovus brand.
What challenges might the next 10 years bring for the brand?
Focusing on making the brand synonymous with the product and continuing to work to increase its reputation in the markets we operate in. In 2021, we also launched the Innovus brand in South Africa so I believe that this global reach we’re aiming for will be faster.
However, the biggest challenge is ensuring that the brand, as well as the products and the collection, evolve and are seen by clients in the same way as we position them - as one of the best on the market.
And that in the next 10 years, the Innovus brand will reflect the product naturally, organically and symbiotically.
What does the sustainability of the brand represent?
Sustainability brings many opportunities, but it brings some challenges too. The main one is the constant quest to develop products that are sustainable, recyclable, reusable and long-lasting.
Communicating and teaching about the potential of our products is another challenge. Not just providing information on the different options for using the products or from a functional point of view, but also successfully sending the message that they are an excellent alternative to solid wood, that they work as carbon stores, playing an active role in the mitigation of CO2 emissions, and that they have a positive effect on global warming by improving energy efficiency in buildings.
The role of our marketing team is to ensure that this potential is perceived in the best way possible and to show that you don’t need to sacrifice aesthetics, beauty and well-being.
How important is the digital for the Innovus brand?
The digital is already part of our lives and influences all of our decisions. I believe that the way we position ourselves on digital platforms is crucial to the success of the Innovus brand and has a major impact on communication with clients.
In digital, it’s easy to communicate the brand, the projects and the different products and decors. On the other hand, there is a major challenge when it comes to showing the different textures (the finishes). But this is where we have the opportunity to talk about how the product is made, to tackle issues of sustainability and recycling, while leaving the touch, the more sensory experience, for other opportunities, such as events and showrooms.
Of these 10 years, which moment would you like to highlight?
I couldn't but highlight the launch of the Innovus Collection in 2019. It was, perhaps, one of the boldest steps taken by Sonae Arauco: launching a collection with over 200 decors and 15 different finishes… which is the equivalent to a renewal rate of over 40%!
A modern, trending collection that meets the different needs of the different market segments. This was the turning point that put Innovus at the level it's at today: one of the best (or the best) brand of decorative products on the market!
What’s your favourite decor?
It’s very hard to choose just one decor…! Now, I'd choose Amazonia (M6298) with a Fusion finish as one of my favourites.
It's a wood decor that's exotic, strong and has lots of personality. It will always be a trendy, innovative choice for any project!
Apart from “Matching Life”, Innovus matches with…?
Transformation, evolution, joy and team!
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