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The Bridge to possible, Cisco Webex

When COVID-19 hit Europe in March 2020, Cisco responded immediately to the effects on business and society, by enabling their customers to quickly transition to securely working from home. Cisco focused on raising awareness of how Webex helps to bring people together, supporting businesses continuity and enable individuals to stay securely connected.

Merkle B2B and Cisco partnered to help support this effort by developing a plan to amplify this critical message out to the EMEAR market. Our aim was to create a brand launch placing Webex at the heart of our messaging and subsequently increasing awareness of the Cisco as well as Webex brand across our three key EMEAR markets.

The combined performance resulting in the Webex platform becoming the second most used video conferencing solution across our target audience with 600 million monthly participants.


Cisco has always been well known as a network provider for large organisations; people associated them as being “best-in-class” for connecting computers through their networking solutions. This brand awareness was very much centered within a B2B audience with limited brand equity with direct consumers.

Their video collaboration tool Webex, was largely unknown and while people did recognise the brand, their perception of Webex was of a clunky, outdated solution.

Cisco had to compete with other video collaborations tools such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams who both had considerable brand awareness in the consumer market, as well as changing Webex’s image to become a solution which drives flexibility and inclusivity, securely.

When the pandemic hit, Cisco wanted us to pivot to place Webex at the heart of our messaging and campaigns, to both support businesses and individuals to stay connected over the pandemic as well as to increase awareness of the Cisco brand across their key EMEA markets.

“Cisco is always looking into the future to innovate and make the impossible, seem possible. Never did we think we would be in a situation where the entire world would be forced to work from home with no notice. During the pandemic we worked to launch a fully integrated brand campaign to raise awareness of our Webex solutions, ensuring that all of our customers and prospects would be able to easily transition to working from home securely, with no impact on their business. Working with Merkle B2B and our media partners, in an agile manner, we were able to pull together an integrated campaign that included high impact placements on connected TV, radio  advertising, strong direct partnerships as well as covering all forms of digital media; search, social and programmatic. The results were outstanding.  In search for example we saw a 20% CTR which I have never experienced previously in my career.”

Helen Gillbe

Head of Paid Media & Social, EMEAR


We began by creating a campaign designed to showcase the power of Webex and the opportunities it creates when combined with Cisco’s networking and security products.

We defined our audience as “knowledge workers”, which quite broadly means anyone who works within a business who was now using video collaboration tools.

We then overlayed this human definition with business targeting for medium to large enterprises. We knew that security was a key concern for many of these businesses, with everyone now working from home. Security was a key USP for Webex, as our key competitors don’t offer the same security capability as Webex and this leaves them vulnerable to hacks or compliancy.

We focused our campaign on “outsmarting” vs “out shouting” our competitors and focused our strategy on addressable media tactics vs broad ATL media.

We structured our investment by allocating 70% to brand awareness and 30% to brand engagement, driving people through to Cisco.com to bring them into our digital journeys.

The Solution: 

The campaign “Bridge to Possible Webex” went live in market in May using addressable media tactics, including Radio, Connected TV, Social, Search and Programmatic with the objective of promoting Webex as a solution that drives flexibility and inclusivity, securely.

We used addressable channels, where we were able to reach people in their homes and online. We used addressable TV vs linear TV to ensure we were targeting the right people. We tested new BETAs such as the LinkedIn Stories format to appeal to consumers and to help address the challenges with work/life boundaries blurring.

Video was our key media channel as this allowed us to deliver our message and show how Webex was enabling people to stay connected during the pandemic across various use cases.

Through the brand videos, we offered a free 90-day full feature trial of Webex for meetings, messaging and calling to support businesses to quickly pivot to operating digitally. For individuals we offered an easily accessible, freemium version of Webex to stay personally connected with their families and friends.

We worked with key local news and business publications as we knew that our audience placed a high degree of trust in their preferred news sites in a time where there was heightened uncertainty and mistrust in government communications associated with the pandemic.



The Bridge To Possible Webex campaign delivered above and beyond our expectations. In just a 10-week period, our brand awareness increased by 25%!  Since the campaign kicked off, the number of people using Webex has grown to millions of monthly participants with billions of calls every month.

This increase in awareness and engagement meant that Webex was the 2nd most used video conferencing solution across our target audience with millions of people using the platform each month.

Keys to success

Discover how we did it. Contact us today.

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