As Asia emerged from the global financial crisis, HP and Intel joined forces to solidify their position in the B2B segment. The marketing task was to generate new business leads by an incremental positive 30 per cent in 2010, relative to 2009. It was determined that HP and Intel needed to change their image from being cold and corporate to a more personable and approachable profile. Additionally, they needed to get disinterested IT managers to give their offerings a fresh glance. A target of a 1:3 return on investment was set.
To stand out from the text-heavy ads of conventional B2B communications, HP and Intel adopted a creative approach that presented their product messages as entertainment, rather than mere technical factoids. Working to show how HP and Intel empower IT managers, the nine-month campaign rolled out eight episodes of entertaining comedy and 16 episodes of comics titled, "The Adventures of Harper - Make It Happen!" Each episode featured a new product benefit that turned Harper, a regular IT professional, into a superhero at work. All viral videos and comics were localised to encapsulate the unique cultural nuances of each of the six markets in the Asia Pacific region: China, India, Korea, South-East Asia, Taiwan and Australia. The content was then seeded in channels that were relevant to IT managers, including technology-focused digital ad networks such as CNET and ZDNet, and popular tech blogs. There were also opportunities for them to share the content by 'liking' and 'commenting' on it via social media networks. The playful content drove IT managers to learn more about HP and Intel via the campaign website, where they could participate in online games, read IT comics and download relevant info, as well as contact a call-centre number.
The site averaged 221,535 new visitors per month and more than 1.6 million unique visitors accessed the site during the nine month duration of the campaign. Click-Through Rates for each country were maintained at a high of 0.37 per cent, about 200 per cent higher than the industry benchmark. The campaign as a whole achieved an impressive 1:6 return on investment.