Our Take On The Best B2B Campaigns From 2016

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We’ve gathered up some of our favourite award winning B2B campaigns from this year for you to take a look at. 2016 was full of new ideas and new approaches to traditional marketing campaigns. Check them out below and let us know what you think!

Xerox
Work can work better

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Xerox took a huge leap of faith when they decided to take a new approach to their marketing this year. In the past, Xerox has always advertised its’ products by speaking to their features and capabilities but this time it was all about the overall benefit to the client or the clients’ client. They created a print and media ad campaign to better reflect their new strategy, which was to show clients, investors and businesses Xerox’s impact on the world of business. They focused on what their product could do to improve the lives of the end user, enter the slogan: “Work can work better”.

The series of print ads take “Work can work better” to the next level by making specific references to daily scenarios. See the examples below.
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They also produced a 30 second TV spot, which focused on the impact Xerox has on improving people’s daily lives. Check it out below. It’s so different from everything they have done in the past. Usually consistency helps build brand recognition. For example, if you see a white background with an animal pop up on your TV screen you almost instantaneously know you’re watching a TELUS commercial. In this case, switching it up didn’t hurt Xerox at all. In fact, it increased impressions. The goal was to show their audience that they were much more diverse than their perception and they made it happen by introducing a macro approach to their business. In a sense, Xerox reintroduced themselves to the world. A job well done.

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Lenonvo

We fixed it!

This one will give you a great laugh. Lenovo is a technology company. Their business is partially B2B and IT specialists are a huge market for them. They noticed that their marketing efforts were not being responded to by their database and that leads were turning stale. What did they do? Lenovo reached out to each and every lead in their IT database with a personalized music video. With a database of over 4,000 IT specialists that task seems daunting, doesn’t it? They leveraged their partners, Vidyard,  to create an algorithm that personalizes each video for the user by rendering the name of the recipient on posters and other objects through out the videos. Check out an example of one of these hilarious personalized videos below. The appeal was huge  not only because of the personalization and humor but because they took a passion that they shared with the user, technology, and demonstrated how innovative they as a brand were by using it to integrate the recipients name. This helped mold their audience’s perception of them and really shook things up so that stale leads would give them a second look.

screen-shot-2016-12-22-at-10-21-53-amLockheed Martin

Field trip to Mars

When your building the future, you need people to get on board. You need people to share your vision and most importantly you need people that are just as inspired as you are to reach that vision. Lockheed Martin, an aerospace company is engineering projects that could one day take people to Mars.

Lockheed Martin took a class of students on a “Field trip to Mars”. They boarded the bus as they would for any field trip but as they began their trip, the glass panes of the bus began to render images from Mars. The images moved as the bus did, making it feel as if the students were realistically driving through Mars – how cool is that? and how can we get on this bus?!  A truly innovative campaign that shows us the capabilities of today’s technology and raises awareness of what’s to come. Watch the video below to see how Lockheed Martin leveraged virtual reality to speak to the aspiring engineers of the world.

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Volvo
Who’s Driving?

This fun ad campaign targeted towards Volvo’s industrial clients shows off the capabilities of their trucks all while putting a smile on your face. Volvo achieved this by creating an ad where they have put a 4 year old in charge of remotely driving one of their trucks through a course. Now, we all know that it’s difficult for a toddler to stay focused, to understand power and to have coordination. So, you can only imagine what that truck was put through…and even after all of that, it still survives and works just fine. Industrial trucks are huge purchases and the goal is to invest in a truck that’s going to last long, withstand unforeseen conditions, wear and tear, stay out of the repair shop and most importantly survive being driven by the worst drivers. A heartwarming way to effectively show the quality of their products to prospective buyers by conquering their biggest fears. Check out the full commercial below.

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GE
The Message

The goal was to be able to connect with students in science to introduce them to next generation of medical equipment created by GE (General Electric). The campaign had multiple facets. GE brought back a less common platform for the bulk of this campaign: the podcast. Listeners followed a young intern through her fictional journey as she learned how to decipher alien sounds, creepy right? Well, the audience seemed to love it, GE hit the mark. The intern “Nikki” shared weekly podcasts for a total of 8 weeks. GE even went as far as creating website, a Wikipedia page and giving users access to a virtual album of historical artifacts that supplement Nikki’s journey. The weekly podcasts became one of the most listened to sponsored content podcasts in history with over 4 million downloads. The way this campaign was built was so realistic, it’s easy to see how so many listeners were sucked in. Not only did GE find a way to relate very well to their target audience but they showed off just how knowledgeable they were in this sector to a more people than they could have ever imagined. Watch the video below to learn more about the campaign.

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SNCF
The Impossible Game

SNCF is France’s largest transportation company and much like Lockheed Martin they needed to connect with the engineers of tomorrow but on another level. SNCF’s goal was to actually use this campaign to acquire new talent. They launched an interactive campaign. The campaign spoke to gamers and challenged them to participate in the “impossible game”. The game starts out just like any other online video game but as the gamers worked through the levels it became clear that they needed to understand technology and engineering on an expert level in order to pass the challenges. The gamers were required to hack a website and re-write the code to finish the game, this is not prompted in the game and is a realization that they had to make on their own. As a result the company brought on 6 new engineers. Check out the video below for a complete overview of the “impossible game” and to learn how SNCF achieved their goal.

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Campaigns like these can be so inspiring. We hope we’ve sparked some creativity in you as many of us are working on our 2017 business plan, marketing plan or brand strategy. We can’t wait to see what the marketers of the world will come up with in 2017 and we’re especially looking forward to those Super Bowl commercials.