Cannes Lions

Reshape Your Reality with the World's First Foldable PC

LENOVO, Morrisville / LENOVO / 2021

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Overview

Background

For the past three plus years, foldable screen devices, specifically in the smartphone category, have been a growing trend and desire in the technology industry. Lenovo was determined to introduce an entirely new category of foldable devices in a much larger form factor – the PC. After more than four years of intense engineering and development, Lenovo was ready to launch the ThinkPad X1 Fold designed for users’ diverse computing needs. Riding the wave of CES 2020 fanfare and buzz, X1 fold was primed to become the media darling for months to come... then, the global pandemic hit. Lenovo had to reshape its go-to-market launch to generate worldwide excitement, reach business and IT decisionmaker audiences, drive sales and establish itself as the leader in the foldable category.

Idea

Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Fold is more than a breakthrough innovation. It’s transforming what’s possible in business and human accomplishments. It’s redefining the edges of possibility. It’s the device that aligns with the next greatest advancement in human imagination and achievement – the story of the first person to go to Mars. This is “Liftoff.” Developed in collaboration with critically acclaimed director, T.G. Herrington of Nom de Guerre Films and award-winning female powerhouse producers, Diana Alvarez and Nicelle Herrington, “Liftoff” tells the intense and emotional story of a female astronaut travelling to Mars with ThinkPad X1 Fold positioned as the mission-critical device in reaching the next biggest advancement in space exploration – a common theme that inspires people around the globe. The short film was ideated as a continuation of ThinkPad’s legacy of being the first PC in space during 1980’s NASA explorations.

Strategy

Ahead of the product launch, research on the target audience of business and IT decisionmakers and their values was conducted to effectively resonate in current times. Research revealed that the top value for business executives who are also leading-edge tech influencers and passionate about a new foldable category, was freedom to work and play from anywhere as frictionless living was now an expectation. Additionally, the driving factor in purchasing decisions for the IT audience is innovation and ways to simplify and maximize productivity and seamless workflows. The PR strategy focused on developing inspirational branded content and sharing evident-based product reviews rooted in Lenovo’s innovative engineering and development. The campaign was designed to resonate across Lenovo’s key product markets (the US, UK and Japan) and position the brand as a future-forward industry disruptor with a first-of-its-kind foldable screen PC to maximize productivity and mobility and drive business forward.

Execution

To kick off the launch, the “Liftoff” film was teased to global audiences, spanning across time zones during a virtual corporate event on Sept. 28, and was released worldwide on YouTube to celebrate ThinkPad’s anniversary on Oct. 5. Cohesive storytelling and film assets were leveraged across the brand’s social media accounts, amplified with paid, and through marketing materials via a global marketing toolkit to drive awareness, consideration and purchase. Credibility of the device’s functionality, versatility and portability was achieved through earned media reviews and strategic paid partnerships including tech celebrity Marques Brownlee, tech expert Marc Saltzman of USA Today and top-tier publication, Business Insider, along with entrepreneurs reshaping their business verticals. The Reshape Your Reality campaign’s mixed-use of paid, earned, social and owned tactics drove mass awareness around the revolutionary ThinkPad X1 Fold and credited Lenovo as a leader in establishing an entirely new category of foldable devices.

Outcome

Through an integrated branded content approach that aligned with the B2B buyer’s behavior, values and affinities, the X1 Fold launch inspired consumers’ every day and elevated the Lenovo brand. Within the first month, paid media drove more than 116,000 clicks to the product landing page and Lenovo saw a 2x faster volume of product demand than what was forecasted. Association of Lenovo with the world’s first foldable PC saw a lift (3.9%) well above benchmark (1.5%) in the U.S. Brand Lift Study via Facebook and results were exceeded via a Brand Awareness Lift on YouTube having achieved a 5-point lift in ad recall for “Liftoff.” Brownlee’s YouTube review garnered more than 2.4M views within the first week and Saltzman’s SMT generated 1,500 airings across 211 U.S. markets. Storytelling was amplified through six editorial features created with Business Insider and unique entrepreneurs reshaping their industries in North America, Japan and the UK. The original content achieved 16.7M+ impressions, 13.8K+ clicks across standard display, high-impact and lead gen units and 82K page views in total. The product launch generated massive buzz with more than 1,200 earned media placements and broadcasts from outlets around the globe. Additionally, the X1 Fold has been named in more than 45 awards lists in the U.S., including Fast Company’s 2020 Innovation by Design Awards. As a first-to-market product, the X1 Fold was established as an innovation statement and breakthrough for Lenovo, driving the brand forward in providing effective and efficient tech solutions for diverse users’ computing needs.

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