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Xerox: How to Re-position the Xerox Brand for Growth?


Situation

Following a shareholder revolt led by Carl Icahn, Xerox was split into two companies in late 2016: a services company that focused on outsourcing (named Conduent) and a company that would house Xerox's legacy printing and document technology business (retaining the Xerox name.)  The new Xerox would have it's own publicly traded stock on the NYSE as of Jan 1, 2017, and ahead of that needed a marketplace positioning capable of convincing the financial community Xerox's best years were still ahead of it. I began leading the new strategic exploratory in September 2016 with a deadline of Xerox's first financial analysts meeting in mid-December.  

Complication

The C-Suite and the financial community still thought of Xerox as 'The Document Company,' and associate it with paper/printing, which is not a growth business.  These perceptions were HIGHLY entrenched. Few were aware of Xerox's substantial capabilities in the digital realm to help solve business problems. 

Truth

I sold in and conducted two 'Visionary Salons' with experts and insightful business leaders on 'The Future of Work.'  I co-moderated these with Xerox's CMO.  In these sessions we confirmed out intuition that today's business leaders don’t really care about documents, whether on paper or digital. They care about the information inside them:  content, knowledge, and especially ideas. C-Suiters told us they believe that in the future, information will no longer be confined to a physical or digital page -- but rather unleashed in ways we've never imagined. And that this would revolutionizing how work gets done. They were surprised to hear Xerox already has solutions and innovations in this arena.  Thus our mission became clear. We needed to positioning Xerox as being as a lynch-pin in this revolution in information and content fluidity. 

Idea

Set the Page Free:  Xerox is innovating how the world captures, manages, and shares information, content and ideas -- In paper, digital and beyond.

Proof Points

We choose to focus on Xerox's new ConnectKey technology (see visual below,) which would drive a complete re-launch of most of Xerox's multi-function printer business in 2017.  This technology transforms what we think of as a copier into an app-driven, personalized digital assistant that can solve business problems -- like translating a document into other languages and sharing it (see brand video execution below,) or scanning receipts and having them go directly into an expense report program.

 App-Driven ConnectKey Technology

App-Driven ConnectKey Technology

Creative Expression: 

From:  Work Can Work Better -- previous campaign, focus on productivity

To:  Set the Page Free -- new campaign, focus on possibility, creating a boundary-less workplace

SEE BRAND FILM BELOW.

Results:

Xerox's new CEO Jeff Jacobson used our positioning and brand film to introduce the new Xerox to Wall Street in December 2016.  Reactions from the analyst community were highly enthusiastic.  We'll know impact on business performance by the end of 2017.

My Role

As strategy lead for Y&R on Xerox, partnered with Xerox CMO to design our strategic approach, guiding the extended marcom tend in landing on a solution, and personally led implementation of it at Y&R. 

What We Did/How Got There

Conducted two "Visionary Salons" on "The Future of Work" with leading thinkers, experts and executives

I led (with CMO John Kennedy) creation of the brief

3 rounds of concept development

3 rounds of quantitative concept testing that I designed, executed and analyzed.

Clients

John Kennedy, CMO, Barbara Basney, SVP Global Advertising and Content

 

Xerox Brand Film: