Oerlikon is a leading international industrial company with 12,700 employees. As part of the transformation of the group, the company was to be positioned as a global innovation leader and the heterogeneous corporate culture was to be shaped into a strong identity to match. Hotz Brand Consultants has been accompanying Oerlikon on this path for three years.
How do you profile the corporate brand of a global industrial company that is highly diversified, whose fields of activity change over time, and whose services are already competently represented by divisional or product brands? Oerlikon's answer: by consistently focusing on the cause of success that lies behind all of its activities: innovation.
The topic of innovation had to be addressed more intensively and holistically than ever before. From all perspectives, at all levels and all points of contact, it was to become tangible: Oerlikon is innovation!
As part of the strategy to position Oerlikon as a global innovation leader, it was important to establish effective partnerships to give the Oerlikon brand maximum visibility and credibility in the field of innovation. Within this framework, partnerships were established that impressively convey Oerlikon's leading position and innovative strength, from cooperation with Sauber in Formula 1 to Zurich Fashion Days and Cern in Geneva.
As a globally positioned, highly diversified industrial company, Oerlikon is active in a wide variety of segments for a wide variety of target groups. Over the course of its history, the company has built up a highly complex portfolio of its own and acquired corporate, divisional and product brands, some of which have very strong brand strengths. Dynamic growth and ongoing internal reorganisations further increase the complexity of its portfolio.
To ensure that Oerlikon can nevertheless present itself to all target groups (from investors to individual customer groups) with maximum clarity and strength, scenarios for the future direction of the brand architecture were developed and evaluated. A brand architecture concept was then constructed for the preferred direction, with the help of which the portfolio can be clearly regulated and efficiently managed.
The global organisation also needed to achieve maximum efficiency and brand consistency in its operational brand management. Oerlikon therefore decided to introduce an innovative Internet-based brand portal.
On the one hand, it provides for the central administration and maintenance of all brand-relevant information, guidelines, and templates (and their constantly updated provision worldwide). On the other hand, with the help of the marketing resource management software BrandMaker, it offers the possibility of cost-effective and brand-consistent individualisation of essential communication tools as well as efficient, group-wide campaign planning.
A particular impact was achieved by making the results of Oerlikon's innovation performance tangible and visible. For example, performance was evident on the basis of markets and megatrends, by using testimonials, by presenting the results of successful customer partnerships, and by showing in detail the relevance of Oerlikon's services for people's daily lives. The conscious use of state-of-the-art communication tools and technologies was a matter of course.
After several turbulent years with various acquisitions and restructurings, the self-image and existing values of the corporate culture were strengthened and unified. As part of a two-year international identity engagement programme, the common identity was communicated in all divisions, active workshops were held on the topics, and hundreds of brand ambassadors were trained.
In addition, the programme was supported by an integrated communications programme and orchestrated into a coherent whole. All employees came into contact with the programme and were able to take the first step towards a future together with a strengthened identity.