Agency: The Brand Experience
- Reposition Verizon as a tech company
- Improve awareness of the infrastructure network required to make wireless connectivity possible
Consumers and policymakers alike are unaware of the physical network — the hundreds of thousands of miles of fiber-optic cable, tons of metal routers and acres of buzzing servers — that powers the global web on their computers and smartphones and, in the near future, connects tractors, garbage cans and medication bottles.
The future, brought to you by Verizon
Lessons to be learned:
- Immersive experience — Verizon created a physical, immersive experience at its policy center in Washington, D.C. to tell the forward-looking story of its brand. Discovery research revealed that key stakeholders had a hard time separating the brand’s history as a telephone provider from its future as a technology company, so Verizon used physical space to quickly and concisely articulate its new position.
- Intentionality — Each component of the Technology & Policy Center was carefully designed to tell a different aspect of Verizon’s brand story and finish with a defined action from the visitors. When visitors enter the Center, they step into the Timeline of the Internet, which highlights milestones of the evolution of the internet from the release of the PalmPilot to Ellen DeGeneres’ famous Oscar selfie. The timeline disarms visitors by invoking nostalgia and opens their minds for the rest of the experience. Once visitors have explored the internet of the past and present, they’re shown a glimpse of the future of internet connectivity across categories from agriculture and health care to urban planning. Visitors finish their visit in a conference room, where they complete Verizon’s intended action — engage in policy discussions about what they can do to make the future happen.
- Sweat the details — Elements of the Technology & Policy Center are customizable for each visiting audience, so a visiting congresswoman from Illinois feels a closer connection to the experience when she sees that the license plate on the back of Verizon’s connected car has been switched to her home state.
- Return on investment — In order for brand experiences to be successful, it’s important for brands to clearly define their objectives at the outset of the project. In the case of Verizon, the company created its brand center with the clearly defined goal of influencing policymakers. Therefore, visitor foot traffic is its main KPI. Each visitor represents an opportunity to elevate Verizon’s point of view.
- Minimal branding — The Center embraces elements of Verizon’s visual brand, but the Verizon logo itself only appears in one location: the elevator. The physical space is a complete manifestation of the brand, so the Verizon logo is largely unnecessary.