“I joined Motorola because I believed in the brand. As brand refresh became my focus, I started to think about how we wanted to do it. that consumers want to live with and a brand that reflects not only company goals, but what the company stands for. ”So says Renata Altenfelder, Executive Director, Global Brand Management Lenovo mobile Business Group (MBG) , began our conversation about the Motorola brand and the recently launched “Risers” campaign.
Based in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Altenfelder joined Lenovo in 2014 to lead all marketing efforts in Latin America, then became executive director of global brand management for Motorola Mobility. Prior to joining Lenovo, Altenfelder was Marketing Director at Triumph International and spent 13 years at Unilever. Her passion for branding and Motorola comes through loud and clear as she shares the journey she has traveled over the past six years. This journey has taken Motorola to focus on what makes a phone the experience of connecting people and improving their lives. “We want to focus on the big technological innovations, the ones that have an impact on the business, but we also want to deliver on what may seem small but always ends up improving someone’s experience,” said Altenfelder, adding, “it is about providing technology with a purpose, solutions that appeal to everyone both in terms of price but also in terms of accessibility.”
The current appearance of the Motorola brand represents the sentiment that has emerged from research studies of consumers and employees to determine the attributes they all associate with Motorola products. It is fascinating that a company organizes focus groups with its employees to gather brand sentiment. Nonetheless, Altenfelder explains that knowing how employees perceive the brand is critical, as their sentiment will impact what they do, regardless of their role in the company.
At the heart of what Motorola is doing today is the desire to deliver technology that fits both the depth of buyers’ pocket and their day-to-day needs. Branding plays a role in the value that products provide. Motorola wanted to continue using colors to keep a branding image fresh and modern, but to add a touch of elegance with a color scheme that moved away from bright yellow and red to coral and burnt orange.
But color palettes and sleeker designs weren’t all Motorola’s branding team wanted to achieve. Along with Lenovo’s New Realities initiative, Motorola wanted to use its brand to showcase ordinary people who make a difference in their community. They sought out young local talents who use technology to make their voice heard, to share their history, their mission or simply their talent which gives pride and recognition to the communities to which they belong. Motorola calls them “Risers”. This is the case, for example, of the Ebinum Brothers of Lagos, Nigeria, a self-taught dance and choreographic duo who, after appearing in a Motorola commercial, appeared in Vogue among others. The “Risers” campaign aims to give hope for the future by showcasing human ingenuity, talent and resilience. Lenovo has also made very tangible efforts to meet the needs of many communities around the world. Lenovo has provided technology and personal protective equipment (PPE) to hospitals and offered distance education to millions of affected students around the world. This effort amounted to $ 13 million (USD) in philanthropic work.
“Looking back on Motorola’s 92 year history,” says Altenfelder, “the company has built on very strong pillars of innovation and pioneering. Even in the most difficult of times, the goal of pushing the boundaries of technology has never wavered. Today, Motorola wants to extend this mindset to branding and advertising. The new moto g campaign might be the best example of this original idea where the commercial is shot at night and the characters are shot in a way that offers a certain degree of privacy with the audience.
Listening to the details of the new campaign and its rollout in Latin America, I can’t help but think that what I consider to be the best branding refresh Motorola has ever had in its 20 years of existence. coverage of the mobile sector, has a lot to do with the very diverse management team on which the company can rely. Gender, nationalities, background and longevity within the company all help create a cognitively diverse group that, while rooted in technology, feels far removed from the almost parochial mentality that Silicon Valley often exhibits. Motorola’s diverse management mix descends from its parent company Lenovo where diversity and inclusion has been a high priority for some time. In its Diversity and Inclusion report, released on December 18, 2020, Lenovo said that despite the pandemic, the company could meet the 2020 targets it set for itself in 2018 of 20% female representation in the world. world and 28% racial / ethnic minority representation across the United States The company slightly exceeded these targets, with 21% and 29% representation, respectively.
Altenfelder recognizes that 2020 has brought a need for sobriety in marketing, increasing the desire to make the brand accessible and relevant. Another big change she’s very aware of is the increased influence Gen Z and Millennials have on their families. While they may not be in control of the purse strings, they certainly have a voice in which tech brands to consider and which products to buy. This was especially true when commerce moved online during the pandemic.
When we look at our reliance on technology and don’t think about it in terms of collaboration, distance learning, or entertainment, phones are doing a basic thing. They’ve been doing it from the very beginning: they connect people. “While we can connect in different ways today than in the past and we will in the future,” says Altenfelder, “our need will never go away and Motorola wants to continue to empower you through this connection. . “
Disclosure: The Heart of Tech is a research and consultancy firm that engages or has engaged in research, analysis and consultancy services with many technology companies, including those mentioned in this column. The author does not own any stake in the companies mentioned in this column