McAfee TV ad shows how it can protect enterprise data ‘from device to cloud’

McAfee device to cloud ads
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McAfee has unveiled its first B2B ad campaign in more than 15 years, including a TV commercial and other assets that aim to shift its perception as an antivirus software provider to a firm that protects business professionals’ information from their devices to wherever it might reside in the cloud.

The 30-second spot shows people working in a variety of environments, such an aircraft hanger, a hospital and an R&D lab, with data flowing almost like a river or ribbons of light across tablets and other screens. Finally, the stream of data pours directly through the most recent McAfee logo, which resembles a red shield, announcing the firm as the “device-to-cloud” security company.

According to Lisa Matherly, McAfee’s vice-president of Content Marketing, the company had done research prior to the campaign that showed strong aided and unaided awareness of the brand’s anti-virus applications that protect network endpoints, but not necessarily its broader portfolio of tools. The ad campaign marks the next phase in a series of efforts to change that.

“There’s been a transformation of the entire marketing organization,” she told B2B News Network. “We really invested in our demand generation model first to partner to sales and move from a strategy that focused on events to one that moved to digital and engaging with customers and prospects as they started with us online. We really weren’t present there.”

The next task, Matherly said, was to focus on the brand and look at higher addressable markets and those with higher compound annual growth rates (CAGRs). The spin-off of McAfee from Intel as a private firm about a year ago, meanwhile, provided the opportunity to rethink not only its logo but how it could be creative in the way it presents itself to IT decision-makers.

“It was a fun process,” she said, adding that McAfee worked with two different agencies to develop the assets in the campaign. “There were lots of different animations they came to us with how to illustrate (the device-to-cloud concept). Some were a little too ‘pixie dust,’ but this one, we thought, showed the movement to the cloud where the data is streaming, with different bits and bytes going through.”

Beyond the TV spot, McAfee will be using many other, more traditional B2B assets such as white papers and case studies to further educate CIOs, CISOs and those who influence them, Matherly said. While security breaches and scandals about loss of data are always in the headlines, though — Facebook’s situation with Cambridge Analytica comes to mind — the company isn’t about to start “newsjacking” to get more attention.

“When a breach occurs or there is some kind of threat, it’s really about dissecting the situation and getting information out that is useful to our customers so they understand how they’re protected or how they’re not,” she said. “We really do try to take the high ground in those situations. Customers and prospects are in a frenzy when these things are happening. We want to be there to help them and not use it as an opportunity for marketing.”

Other elements of the McAfee campaign will include digital ads, social ads and even radio.

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Shane Schick is the Editor-in-Chief of B2B News Network. He is the former Editor-in-Chief of Marketing magazine and has also been Vice-President, Content & Community (Editor-in-Chief), at IT World Canada, a technology columnist with the Globe and Mail and was the founding editor of Shane has been recognized for journalistic excellence by the Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance and the Canadian Online Publishing Awards.