technology

Cisco Launches 'Human Network' Campaign, Part II

Cisco Cisco Systems is announcing the second phase of its global "Welcome to the Human Network" brand campaign today, called "The Human Network Effect," in an effort to emphasize the changes its technology has made in the way people live, work, and play.

Among those changes are saving money on travel expenses by using teleconferencing platforms that let employees who work in offices on opposite sides of the world closely collaborate on projects. Or allowing people to spend more time with family members because technology lets them automate or complete work tasks more quickly.

The first three campaign messages--"New Collaboration Effect," "Break Down Barriers Effect;" and "Save More, Travel Less Effect"--launch today, with "Power When You Need It Effect," "Launch Products Faster Effect," "Save the Planet Effect," and Knowledge is Power Effect" following throughout the next 18 months.

The biggest challenge in launching "Human Network Effect" has been to design a global campaign that Cisco could take to eight countries simultaneously, according to Diane Dudeck, senior director of worldwide media, entertainment and partnership marketing communications at Cisco. "I can't deny we had some late nights, given the aggressive deadlines we set for ourselves," she says.

Cisco's global agency of record--Ogilvy & Mather in Los Angeles-- created the campaign, which includes TV, print, out-of-home and digital. It targets 25- to-54-year-old males, influencers and early adopters of technology. The first television spot in the United States broke without fanfare on Sunday. Others are scheduled to follow on CNN, Discovery and History channels, as well as Fox's "House" and CBS's "The Unit," and in November on CNBC.

Digital ads will appear on WSJ.com, NYTimes.com, and WashingtonPost.com, as well as sports networks ESPN, Major League Baseball (MLB) and National Basketball Association (NBA).

The first series of TV and digital ads, "Baggage Claim" and "Executive Rally," highlights some of the more challenging aspects of business travel. These spots, along with "Shortest Commute," tell a story based on the "Save More, Travel Less Effect."

Print ads are scheduled to appear in Canada, China, India, and other countries outside the United States.

Along with the campaign, Cisco will also launch a new line of unified communications platforms to tie in its products, such as WebEx, and the virtual conferencing application TelePresence.

During the past two years, many of Cisco's more than 65,000 employees have used the 269 TelePresence units deployed worldwide in 37 countries to conduct about 27,000 meetings. They have avoided costly business travel, and managed to get the jobs done. For example, a recent meeting in San Francisco took place to shore up the marketing message for the latest advertising campaign. It involved teams from eight countries. Although everyone had worked together virtually for months, this meeting was the first time many of the employees met in person.

Cisco.com has been redesigned to highlight Web 2.0 technologies, such as video, to showcase the "Human Network Effect" through stories. Other clips on the site will focus on TelePresence and how the technology lets people travel less, yet get the job done.

Visitors to the site can find personalized information based on previous visits. Integrated collaborative tools such as WebEx and video allow them to interact and share information and ideas with business partners and Cisco employees.

Cisco-branded merchandise, such as t-shirts, coffee mugs and flash drives, also begin selling in Cisco stores this week to promote the "Human Network Effect."

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