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The XD Agency - Cisco Live Event

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Company: The XD Agency, Atlanta, GA, USA
Company Description:The XD Agency is a strategic communications agency hyper-focused on experience design. We create transformative business value for our clients through immersive experiences that are emotional and real. We develop smart content and strategies to bring out the best in experiential programs and portfolios.
Nomination Category:Live Event Categories
Nomination Sub Category:Best Brand Experience Event

Nomination Title: Cisco Live

The date on which this nominated production was first presented: June 25, 2017

Describe the nominated event's communications objectives and how it met those objectives, including the event's genesis, development, performance, and results to date (up to 525 words).

Since the inception of Cisco Live, the tech mega-event has grown exponentially. The audience has increased in numbers and the expectations have more than kept pace.

That was never truer than in 2017, when Cisco tapped The XD Agency to up-level the event’s keynote content for its most critical year yet. Cisco was poised to launch its biggest product of the past 15 years, if not ever, and the experience needed to reflect that.

The experience needed to communicate clearly and convincingly that this new product — The Network Intuitive — was the start of something big. It needed to generate buy-in among Cisco Live attendees, inspiring their passion, and helping them build emotional connections to the brand.

And because the audience is an exceedingly tech-savvy seen-everything one, they're difficult to impress. To make an impact, the experience needed to employ technology in a never-before-seen way, using it as a powerful metaphor to communicate that something groundbreaking was on its way.

The opening moment would be a critical one —designed to amp up the audience and bring the CEO to the stage with energy and gravitas alike. And it all began with a bit of nerd humor: a countdown clock that used binary computer language. That led into a business-as-usual opening, featuring photos, animations, and a corporate-esque “You’re IT” theme that centered on attendees as superheroes.

This deliberately ho-hum introduction was designed to lure attendees into thinking the event would be traditional. Then came an abrupt reset.

Almost like the power was going out, the lights started to flicker — and then the video, lighting, and audio returned in a completely new way, transforming the venue and the audience.

The room shook. Hearts pounded. And the Imagine Dragons song, “Thunder,” provided the anthem-like soundtrack for a chest-rattling moment that called to mind Cisco’s revolutionized way of doing business.

This reset moment revealed ever-more-exciting layers of technology, with lighting and audio devices that combined to compel visceral emotional reactions. Picture 18 choreographed lasers, a lighted circular stage in the center of the venue, illuminated flying orbs, and 14,000 wearable LED medallions that brought the attendees into the show.

“Wow.” Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins said upon taking the stage. “If you weren’t awake, you are now!” The energy and emotional investment of the audience was clear.

And it continued to build throughout the multiday event, as the immersive design and complement of technology combined to create a highly dynamic and attention-keeping envormnent.

Cisco saw significant brand lift among the 12,000+ attendees of the opening keynote. They reported increased awareness, engagement, and purchase intent, and demonstrated an increased alignment with and loyalty to Cisco’s key messages.

A full 96% said they have a strong emotional connection to Cisco Live, 92% said the event strengthened their relationship with Cisco, and the Net Promoter Score was 62 — 21 points above average. Additionally, 92%of attendees agreed that Cisco clearly articulated its vision and strategy at the event, and 84% said they are likely to purchase as a result of their attendance.

Plus, 78,700 social media mentions generatedover 872 million impressions.

List the appropriate creative and production credits for this entry: Advertising Agency/City: Client: Art Director: Cinematographer: Creative Director: Designer: Director: Illustrator/City: Music Producer/City: Photographer/City: Printer/City: Producer: Production Company/City: Programmer: Writer: Web Development Firm/City:

Creative: The XD Agency

Production: The XD Agency

Lighting: Lightswitch