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THE BUSINESS CHALLENGE

Cisco is the worldwide leader in IT and networking, helping companies of all sizes transform how people connect, communicate, and collaborate. Among large companies, Cisco is incredibly well-known and has proven its value, resulting in high adoption among these companies; however, Cisco is often left out of the consideration set among small and medium businesses (SMBs). Cisco set out to educate SMB decision makers to ensure they know that Cisco possesses an expert understanding of their business challenges and offers a portfolio of solutions that not only address these challenges, but also help to position their businesses for growth.


GOAL

Increase brand awareness among SMB owners and business decision influencers in the UK and Ireland, and drive messaging that Cisco understands the challenges of their businesses and offers solutions at an affordable price.


STRATEGIC INSIGHT

If there’s one thing all SMB owners have in common, it’s the seemingly impossible, complex decisions that they face every single day. Cisco understands these challenges and knows that these SMB owners need smart, simple, solutions that are cost-effective over the long-term. By helping these businesses use IT to its fullest potential, Cisco unlocks the doors to maximized efficiency, revenue, and customer satisfaction.


MAIN IDEA

With the strategic insight in mind, BuzzFeed created original branded content to reach SMBs at scale and expose them to the Cisco brand as well as show them that Cisco understands their business needs. BuzzFeed created two co-branded videos that featured business owners playing a game of “Would You Rather: Business Edition” with relevant questions that focus on the real business obstacles, joys, and office dilemmas SMBs face every day, while also entertaining the audience with a fun and lighthearted tone. Additionally, we developed a custom article following a list format highlighting the honest realities and misconceptions of running a company from the perspective of small-business owners.

Video 1: Would You Rather - Ginger

Via Facebook: BuzzFeedUK

"As a ginger person, I would burn."

Video 2: Would You Rather - Sniffer

Via Facebook: BuzzFeedUK

"We don't hire sniffers or foot tappers."

Post: 13 Secrets Business Owners Will Never Tell You

Via buzzfeed.com

One of the many perks: picking who we work with.


DISTRIBUTION STRATEGY

We targeted our BuzzFeed audience and layered on Facebook targeting of Small Business Owners as well as job title targeting to make sure we were hitting the right audience. Prioritizing the audience experience with our content and distribution helps to ensure Cisco content is seen and matters to SMB owners and business decision influencers. We optimized the audience experience through insights-driven content, optimized towards the most engagements, and distributed from trusted handles that they or their networks follow.


RESULTS

Our strategy for this campaign paid off, as it drove massive reach and enticed viewers to click to seek additional information. The videos achieved an impressive completion rate of 6.81%, exceeding the benchmark by over 2.5x. We also saw a CTR of 0.22% due to clicks from the outro link of the post – over 8x higher than the BuzzFeed benchmark!

We utilized a Forced Exposure methodology to measure the attitudinal impact of the content. The results were overwhelmingly positive, with significant impact seen across every single tested metric, confirming that Cisco achieved its key goals of increasing awareness and driving key messaging among their target audience. The campaign even shifted Cisco into the consideration set for a significantly higher number of these SMB decision makers.

Contributing to these successes, over 8 in 10 respondents agreed that the content clearly showed the benefits of Cisco’s solutions for SMB’s, and that Cisco fit seamlessly into the content.


KEY TAKEAWAYS

Embracing its position as a global leader, Cisco continues to innovate and help small and medium businesses drive growth through the use of technology. By partnering with BuzzFeed, Cisco was able to drive mass reach and impact among SMBs, using informative and entertaining content to further establish itself within this space and help small and medium businesses achieve the success they deserve.