F5 Networks has launched a global brand campaign across an array of channels to target C-level technology decision makers. The “We Make Apps Go: Faster. Smarter. Safer” campaign takes a content-first approach to reach C-level tech decision makers and empowers C-suite audiences with thought provoking content at WeMakeAppsGo.com.
The strategy, creative and media planning and buying for the campaign were driven by Seattle-based agency POP.
The “We Make Apps Go: Faster. Smarter. Safer.” campaign takes a content-first approach to reach C-level technology decision makers globally. The campaign’s content was created to be thought-provoking, while driving engagement and consideration of the complex benefits and risks inherent in digital transformation. This effort represents a strategic shift for F5, which historically has marketed more toward technical audiences and specifically, network architects.
“With most of today’s businesses in the midst of a technology-driven transformation, one thing remains constant: reliance on applications to operate their businesses and meet customer demands,” said Ben Gibson, Chief Marketing Officer of F5, in a statement. “The goal of the We Make Apps Go campaign is to break category conventions, both visually and verbally, to reach C-level IT with fresh content—at the right altitude—that will educate, entertain, and inspire.”
DIVERGE spoke to Ben Gibson, CMO of F5 and David Hayes, Client Partner at POP to find out more:
Where did the idea for this campaign come from?
Ben Gibson: Apps are becoming increasingly embedded in business operations. We recognized a gap in the marketplace where C-level audiences weren’t getting the information they needed to make critical decisions about how apps can impact or drive their business. They needed more information about how performance, flexibility and security can align to increase productivity and create a better customer experience.
David Hayes: The resulting strategy is a campaign that “connects the dots” – it brings technology buyers and higher-level budget owners and sponsors together using a content marketing strategy rich in thought leadership and insights. It breaks category conventions, both visually and verbally.
Who does it target?
Ben Gibson: We want to focus this company narrative as a conversation with the executive level—the CISOs, CIOs and CEOs who are increasingly dependent on applications to run their businesses. This messaging is business-level, hits on topics that are close to the problems that the C-Suite face every day and acts as an umbrella campaign for our broader Cloud and Security initiatives.
Why is it significant?
Ben Gibson: The campaign represents a strategic shift for F5 which historically has marketed toward technical audiences and specifically, network architects. It also breaks convention from traditional, strictly channel advertising by taking a content-first approach. It shifts the relationship between F5 and its customer, moving F5 Networks from a leader in the load-balancing space to a leader in the application security space.
David Hayes: This is an unfair fight that we cannot win if we employ the same tactics as those who appear bigger and stronger than us. We cannot slug our way to success. We have to be more strategic. Marketers typically try to shout more loudly and more often to capture an audience’s eyes. We intend to capture our audience’s hearts. This campaign will be a welcome whisper into the thunder of overhyped doom-and-gloom sameness. This campaign will be the singular voice of a brand that is ready to help rather than sell, ready to teach rather than preach, and ready to perform rather than promise.
Who is the team behind this?
David Hayes, Client Partner at POP: The strategy, creative and media planning and buying efforts for the campaign were driven by Seattle-based agency POP. With decades of focus on applications, F5 offers a unique point-of-view on app security that is changing the way security is done. This provided an opportunity to create a campaign that captures our audience’s hearts through a singular voice that is ready to help rather than sell, ready to teach rather than preach, and ready to perform rather than promise.
Can you explain what the Awareness and Consideration journey is?
David Hayes: If you want a C-level executive’s attention today, you have to deliver your messages in a form they desire – helpful, useful, informative, educational, and entertaining content. That is precisely why we have decided to go all in on content for our awareness-building efforts targeted to C-level executives. WeMakeAppsGo.com is critical to moving visitors through a content journey that can help contract the buying cycle in addition to creating content linkages within their organization that are crucial to enterprise buying decisions. We can use that content to make emails more relevant, and to drive more handoffs within an organization.
Who should visit this website and why?
Ben Gibson: C-level technology decision makers. With most of today’s businesses in the midst of a technology-driven transformation, one thing remains constant: reliance on applications to operate their businesses and meet customer demands.
As a global project, how will it cater to a diverse audience?
Ben Gibson: We Make Apps Go delivers content that fosters deep engagement with F5’s C-suite customers. With the campaign’s content taking many forms, including articles, videos, infographics, podcasts, to name a few. The campaign’s strategy began with the creation of hundreds of questions F5’s audience could ask. Our goal is to be able to answer those questions, or offer value to an audience that expects instant answers anytime, anywhere.
As an agency, what will POP’s role be in this?
David Hayes: POP is driving the strategy, creative and media planning and buying for the campaign. In a world where any brand can be breached or disrupted in an instant, knowledge is power. The smarter we make our audience, the better able they are to make informed decisions – and the more likely they are to choose F5. Every time our C-suite audience encounters us in the marketplace, they will learn something.