Panasonic's effort aims to mass market Toughbook

SAN FRANCISCO: Panasonic launched an integrated campaign to make its Toughbooks more appealing to mass consumers

SAN FRANCISCO: Panasonic launched an integrated campaign to make its Toughbooks more appealing to mass consumers.

Traditionally, the company marketed Toughbook laptops toward “rugged” consumers like police officers and those in construction, but the effort intends to widen this group to include professionals and consumers who frequently take their laptops while traveling. Panasonic developed the “Toughbook for a Toughworld” campaign following internal and external research that included interviews with customers.

“We found that people who were drawn to Toughbooks were people who liked to push themselves in their jobs,” said Marca Armstrong, director of marketing for Panasonic Computer Solutions Company. “This idea of going above and beyond is what helped us craft the idea of living in a tough world.”

Cohn & Wolfe, Panasonic's AOR since 2005, is working on the PR elements. Bob Osmond, SVP at C&W, noted that “there is a huge opportunity for Panasonic to build on [its] heritage.”

The push first launched in early March, and includes a microsite, ForaToughWorld.com, and ad campaign. Other components in the works include a blog to launch in mid-April, and Panasonic is currently tapping into brand advocates to participate in the site. It will include posts from advocates and Panasonic employees and executives sharing their experiences with the laptops and addressing topical tech issues.

Because the blog's primary audience will be tech enthusiasts, media outreach will target tech, business, and consumer media.

Armstrong noted that this is “the first time Panasonic launched a totally integrated campaign.”

“Our core belief is, if you don't have a consistent message... it will feel disjoined,” she said.

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