Blackberry’s Turnaround: How to recapture the B-to-B market

In 2014, Blackberry was determined to recapture their B-to-B audience. The company had been forced into a B-to-C market that lost them almost $2 billion dollars a quarter.

But in the last 18 months, Blackberry has focused its attention on a strategy that recaptures the original B-to-B audience. Its very first step was to hire Gyro, an agency specialized in the market. Through the partnership, Blackberry launched the “Work Wide” campaign to grow interest in its new Blackberry Passport device. Blackberry was positioned as a serious business tool, with key security features that made it a hit. Other smartphones were portrayed as games. In one week, more than 200,000 devices were sold.

“Here were two factors: fun and trust,” Christoph Becker, CEO of Gyro, said in this year’s BMA. “We had so many edits coming out, and we had to turn them around quickly. BlackBerry is a challenger brand, and we are a challenger agency, so it worked well. Who doesn’t want to bring back an iconic brand?”

The partnership’s main priority is to keep Blackberry’s focus on security and privacy in addition to making it relevant by offering ‘the internet of things,’ software and services.

Becker also discussed the smaller budget while still garnering more bang for your buck. Blackberry’s media plan might have cut social media by 98%, but its focus on brand journalists and native advertising has doubled content output. The plan “helped drive a thought leadership program. This is all about being frugal, and it has worked.”

What’s next for Blackberry? The partnership wants to go full steam ahead. The next year is looking at a continuation of the ‘its not a toy’ platform through a global communication plan. “There is nothing better than being seriously productive in your job, and only BlackBerry was born to deliver that,” says Becker.


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