Cisco is one legendary name we find when we linger through high-end technology services and products. Precisely addressing, the largest networking company in the world. The tech giant is headquartered in California with diversified subsidiaries. The company grew from routers to networks, telecommunication to Ethernet and technology to high-end technology. As they developed, they made significant changes in the brand structuring too.
Now coming to the bridge to tomorrow, it is more than just an expression. The first logo of Cisco themed the Golden Gate bridge in San Francisco. Significantly, that’s how they came into the name Cisco being the end tail of San Fran” cisco.” Devoted to the locality, the company name was preferred to be set in lowercase. The logo pictured a dual meaning. Though it is themed honoring the Golden Gate Bridge, it represented analog signals of a wave. Two crests along with one trough is what the company portrays through the logo. Being designed in 1985, this logo was an iconic one with a minimalistic look and great appeal. The lack of wordmark is the only thing that could be considered as the defect of this logo, apart from that, the logo balanced the name and functions of the brand. The technical insights from the logo present the complete idea regarding the brand, what they do and what they insist.
In the late 1980s, the Internet began to boom, and this created new opportunities for the company. With this scope in mind, Cisco updated their logo in the year 1996. The second logo is an incarnation from the first one, but there were several changes. The analog signal here has discrete values, and this depicted their development through technologies. The logo evolved by giving a wordmark above. Cisco Systems in strong uppercase letters was the first and significant change in the logo. Now, this logo contains the same bridge, but this time, it is less bridge and more the signal. The signal is enclosed in a box, and it portrays a proper usage of negative spacing. The white signal lines were negative spacing on the blue enclosed box. However, it seems less realistic compared to that of the previous logo. Now, this was a tech-oriented logo, where the blue color depicts prosperity, excellence, and calmness, and the red color represents determination and business responsibility. With the logo, the company hinted the change of era. Technological updates made its significant position in that decade with the evolution of internet and protocols.
Now, this logo had many defects. Since it is confined to a box, the scope felt limited. Also, the logo somehow felt like a depiction of a bar chart. There were confusions in the visual meaning and to overcome this, in the year 2006, Cisco reincarnated their logo to a newer look. Now, this is something to notice as the brand ditched all their sharp square edges and made all sides round and smooth. The brand with this update reduced the cluttered outlook visually. This logo embarked a precise balance between the concept of bridge and signal as it inherited both the feeling simultaneously. The number of strokes got reduced, and the in-between space increased, and this eliminated the cluttered feel. The bridge brilliantly got depicted with nine strong strokes, and the in-between spacing highlighted the logo. The brand removed the “systems” part from the logo and made it crisp with boldly lettered watermark “CISCO.” They retained the colors as they gave a blue color to the logo and red to the word mark. The span of the company name makes the logo look small allowing the bridge shape to be heavy. This logo was specifically named as “the human network.” This name interacts as it portrays the internet networks connecting people and business. Cisco launched “Human Network” as a campaign to public awareness so as to convey that they are not just a tech vendor but a network that could connect humans and help them communicate better. With this update, Cisco became the leader in communication and collaboration technologies. Now that happened just with a logo update and a campaign. The effect was huge, and the rebrand created success impacts. The communicative name changed to Cisco from Cisco Systems with this rebrand. Shortening the name increased the visibility and it gave more focus to the title. The bridge is retained as a sign of something that connects or interacts. And being a communication-oriented company, Cisco took the right step by maintaining the concept of the bridge.
This successful logo, then in 2013 made a slight update. There were no significant changes as the only difference was in color. Cisco replaces the brand colors with cyan. Red and Blue got replaced with a single, and with this update, both the logo and the wordmark got the same color. This logo change was also part of a campaign. Cisco pushed the concept of IoT through this change, and the campaign got named as “Tomorrow starts here.” Cisco targets the tomorrow as a hub of the internet through this campaign.
CEO John Chambers on the Forbes magazine cover quoted this update as
“Today, more than 99% of our world is still not connected to the Internet. But we’re working on it.”
Internet of things being their next category of evolution, Cisco is retaining their position being the top in the networking hardware industry. Like what I presented in the first paragraph, Cisco replicated their Golden Gate Bridge, and now it leads to tomorrow.
“Empowering the Internet Generation” was the first ever campaign done by Cisco. This was far back in the late 90s. Cisco, with this campaign, introduced the internet to the common people. Though it was the first one, “The Human network” was the first known campaign done by Cisco. This campaign was a big success, and it created a social route for the brand, setting a specific communication brand identity rather than a tech vendor. There were phases in the campaign as it was first launched in theG8 countries. After the success of this campaign, Cisco made huge developments, and this led them to work on the third campaign in 2013, “Tomorrow starts here.” Being a global integrated marketing campaign, this one focused on the Internet of things with a message “Connecting people, process, data, and things will make the network more valuable than ever.” To connect the unconnected is the prime target in this campaign and Cisco with its application-centric networking released a trend to connect everything with the Internet. This unveiled huge opportunities of the internet and made revelations of the coming tomorrow. The next campaign was done in 2016, and this was “There’s never been a better time.” This became a tagline and got connected to many social issues. The campaign made variations depending on the localized areas they were presented. The reach followed by this campaign was huge. Being regularly updated with technology and campaigns, Cisco is raising its next biggest campaign “Bridge to Possible.” Being the 15th best global brand, according to the list of 2018 Best Global Brands, Cisco is getting to a broader canvas with this latest campaign.
Check out how Britannia rebranded themselves on their Centenary year: https://brandthechange.com/2018/10/britannia-the-centenary-rebranding/