Shortlisted 2022

Technology & Telecoms


Webex by Cisco

Entered by:

Merkle B2B



Powering Through The Pandemic With Mclaren

The Challenge

With the global pandemic in full swing in the spring of 2021, Webex by Cisco went through a transformation to reposition themselves as the solution to empower hybrid work. Webex by Cisco was the first Cisco acquisition to relaunch their new brand proposition and partnered with McLaren as their collaboration solution, helping them to bring the world of hybrid sports to life.

Historically, Webex had been seen as a tool that only really worked for large, global organisations who could afford to purchase licenses. There was a feeling that the platform only offered video calling and wasn’t a comparable product to other video conferencing tools. Our campaign creative and media strategy needed to change this opinion by ensuring we were front of mind for our target audience. We needed to make an impact through a memorable campaign, showcasing the new Webex by Cisco platform.

Our campaign showed audiences that Webex by Cisco was the right partner to enable businesses to rise to the challenges created by hybrid work, through innovative solutions to allow people to communicate and work better together, no matter where they were in the world.
Our audience was broad, focusing on decision makers and influencers from 250+ companies across the UK, Germany, France, and Italy. With strong competition, we needed to Out Smart vs trying to Out Shout competitors, by identifying opportunities to connect with our audience in a way that differentiated Webex by Cisco from the competition. Our campaign brought to life the key features which power truly global hybrid work. This allows us to increase our brand awareness, familiarity, and drive consideration intent from our target audience.

The Content Solution

Our first campaign’s aim as the newly repositioned Webex by Cisco was to showcase the best of our product innovations and how they empower a new standard of hybrid work. It had to be done authentically and memorably, so instead of using Cisco to explain the benefits of Webex directly to customers, we partnered with McLaren to show their products in action. There was no better customer to stress test Webex – demonstrating how their products and features measured up to the levels of speed, precision, and performance the McLaren team demands to race competitively every time.

The campaign spanned TV, digital display, homepage takeovers, social, out of home, and print to highlight Webex’s inherent role in powering the McLaren F1 team to be unstoppable. We wove the Webex Suite’s hardware and software features into the story to show how Webex had transformed how the McLaren team communicates from the track, the office, and anywhere in between. The suite empowered everything; from the premium Webex Desk Pro used by the CEO at the McLaren Technology Centre, to live polling with the drivers, to team principals using background noise removal to deliver clear communication trackside, to engineers using immersive share to discuss gearbox scenarios, and of course, to actual F1 fans across the globe, showcasing real-time language translation and how it enables millions of people to join the conversation.

From every angle, the campaign spot lit that Webex was integral to McLaren’s success at running their business, beyond just racing. Demonstrating global relevance, while being localised to four key markets. Proving that whatever hybrid work use-case can be imagined, collaboration can be intuitive, additive, and provide solutions people didn’t know were possible.

The Media/Content Amplification Solution

Making the most of the partnership with McLaren and the amazing visuals in the campaign which bought to life the products and features, we utilised sports focused partnerships and environments where our audience over-indexed.

Our audience was broad, focusing primarily on C-Suite or VPs and above from 250+ companies. We secondarily wanted to target the influencers from these businesses who are instrumental in recommending technology to empower adoption of hybrid work.

Our audience are sports fans, and we knew that 26% of our target audience across EMEA followed F1. This gave us the opportunity to focus on amplifying the partnership with Webex, using the McLaren customer story to create an emotional connection with our audience whilst they were watching F1 races, wherever they were watching. These channels were the keyways to reach our audience; through TV (97% reach), digital (99% reach) and video (78%) we could maximise our reach.

We launched an account-based marketing activation across digital-out-of-home (DOOH), matching the location of key job titles against Webex’s key enterprise and commercial accounts, using our proprietary ecos platform to identify the key locations our target audience were. This meant we could overcome the challenge with closed offices and focus on the key locations we knew our audience spent time and would be exposed to our advertising. We also secured premium inventory around the British Grand Prix to support and amplify the sponsorship. This coincided with a launch event for Webex by Cisco customers and ensured our messaging was front of mind to drive impact.

As well as an audience-first DOOH execution, we launched an integrated partnership with Sky Sports across linear, addressable, and digital. We knew that this was the right partnership, as our audience over-indexed against Sky Sports’ target audience, with custom F1 channels and the natural fit of their sports content. This allowed us to surround our audience using a mix of key ad placements around the “summer of sports” and key F1 races whilst continuing our audience-first approach through our addressable TV strategy.

We also executed a programmatic campaign, allowing us to be agnostic on the websites we ran our campaign, focusing instead on where our audience consume content which contextually aligned to our campaign. To connect our programmatic strategy, we worked with SambaTV to ensure that people exposed to our TV campaign were then re-targeted to drive our frequency higher, creating a deeper connection through repeated exposure.

The Result

Prior to launch, we had tasked ourselves with driving a 20% increase in brand awareness, 15% increase in familiarity, and 10% increase in consideration intent. As the campaign was due to run for eight -weeks, we wanted to make sure the campaign metrics reflected the time in market but also showed the impact to the business. We used ComScore supported by media metrics to give us a 360 view of performance.

Our media performance across the campaign was strong, our R/F across our Sky Sports partnership enabled us to over-deliver, due to strategic planning by our AV team on the channels and key sporting events they were able to secure ad-break slots. In the summer of sports, viewership was high and so was competition! Our campaign achieved +35% average increase in reach across EMEA and a 70% increase in frequency.

The campaign was hugely successful when we looked at the impact on our core brand metrics. We drove a 23% increase in brand awareness, 27% increase in familiarity and 26% increase in consideration intent.

What was equally as exciting to see was the uplift in brand perception across our target audience. For those that were exposed to our campaign, we saw a 26% increase in perception of the quality of the products and solutions offered by Webex and a 21% increase in the perception that Webex by Cisco empowers hybrid work. These metrics were critically important to the business as the brand re-launch was designed to showcase how Webex was much more than a video conferencing tool for large organisations but is instead instrumental in empowering hybrid work for businesses.