$137.8B U.S. ad spend for top 200 advertisers
Over the past three years, Petra Neiger has led Cisco Systems' social media center of excellence as it has evolved from an internal social training center for employees to a core part of the company's business. “Our scope has increased as we have grown the team and launched new programs,” said Neiger, who joined Cisco in 2007 as a digital strategist. “One of the biggest changes over the past year has been the evolution of the social media COE into a true social business.” Neiger helped introduce new programs, including a customer training program offering online courses and individual sessions in which clients can learn social media best practices and how to launch a social business. She also expanded the company's reverse-mentoring program, in which social media experts help senior Cisco executives get up to speed on social. In October, Neiger was given oversight of the digital brand experience for Cisco's new campaign, “Tomorrow Starts Here,” which was launched in December. “Now when you go on our website, via desktop or mobile, you will see that it is very socially infused. We didn't have that before,” Neiger said. “Now we have a lot of social content; it's not just "follow us on Facebook,' but social calls to action on the site and a lot of social connections.” Neiger's team works with other teams within Cisco on integrating the brand campaign across several digital platforms. “We really do have very strong social plus Web plus mobile plus content integration. The campaign brings all these different components together,” she said.