Brand Campaign Demonstrates How Cisco Powers Business
January 12, 2005
Networking is no longer just about computers. It's about communication. Whether to work, live, play, or learn, people are using Internet protocol (IP) networking technologies to reach each other in ways we never thought possible. Fittingly, Cisco Systems, the world's leading provider of the technologies that make IP networks possible, launched a new global advertising and marketing campaign that highlights how Cisco technology has become a ubiquitous resource for powering business communications around the world. News@Cisco recently sat down with Cisco's Marilyn Mersereau, vice president of corporate marketing, and Gary Bridge, vice president of the Internet Business Solutions group, about the new campaign and how Cisco technology has become a vital component to the success of any business or organization.
What is the inspiration behind Cisco's new branding campaign?
Marilyn Mersereau: The theme that we have chosen is "Powered by Cisco." The campaign shows how Cisco is creating the technologies that are transforming both large and small organizations throughout the public and private sectors, such as healthcare, education, government and manufacturing, to name just a few. Cisco is driving change by powering the communications that are making businesses and communities work better together.
The goal of the campaign is to increase mindshare of Cisco among business decision makers. We have great relationships with tech people, so to speak. Now we hope to communicate to the business audience.
The campaign is also intended to set us apart from other high technology marketing by speaking to the needs and objectives of business leaders. The campaign revolves around the top five areas business people are concerned about today: security, customer satisfaction, collaboration, innovation, and productivity. This is not about bells-and-whistles features. The look and feel of the ads is much more human and focused on the benefits of being connected and powered by Cisco networks. In a somewhat softer, photojournalistic fashion, the ads highlight how Cisco is helping to change the way we work, live, play, and learn.
Cisco has significant mindshare with technical decision makers. Why is it important to reach the business decision maker?
Gary Bridge: Before technical decision makers can spend money, they have to win support from business leaders, who control the strategic agenda. Business and government leaders increasingly understand that competitive advantage, productivity and growth depend on having the right people and the right processes in place before they invest in technology. For business executives, it's not about the products and technical specifications-it's all about the business benefits of the technology. We need to be sure that these critical business decision makers understand that Cisco is at the center of this vision. Before, business executives left these kinds of issues to their technical people. But now that IP communications technology is such a core element to the success of any business, corporate leaders are becoming more and more involved in technology decisions.
What do business decision makers care about?
Gary Bridge: Executives used to be concerned primarily with cutting costs, but today they are concerned also with the other side of the business equation-increasing revenues, improving the customer experience, and increasing productivity. Business and government leaders understand the correlation between productivity and growth, and they realize that they need to build a robust infrastructure in order to position their economies and businesses for the future.
For example, in healthcare, we have only begun to scratch the surface on how technology can transform the industry. Healthcare organizations invest heavily in advanced medical technology, but they have invested less so in communications technology. That is changing rapidly. Capabilities such as electronic health records, e-prescribing and remote patient monitoring can greatly improve quality and reduce healthcare overhead by 15 to 25 percent. The United States spends $1.4 trillionalmost 16 percent of its entire GDPeach year on healthcare, so the potential savings are huge. And there are opportunities for communications technology to similarly benefit many other industries.
How will you roll out the campaign?
Marilyn Mersereau: The campaign will air on prime-time and cable TV, as well as select national newspapers, business periodicals and trade magazines. The campaign is completely integrated, from broadcast and print advertising to online and targeted demand generation. The first phase of the campaign will begin in the United States on January 12, 2005. We will introduce the campaign over the next two to four months into several more countries including France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Italy, Canada, China and Japan. The campaign's online efforts will involve several components, including a variety of in-depth information on our Web site to provide more substantial details for executives and technologists who are involved in the development of business communications.