The tech giant said the push goes beyond its previous e-services efforts by attempting to speak directly to information technology decision makers about HP's capabilities in the enterprise category, the market for tech products and services targeting big businesses.
The first couple of weeks of the campaign will be devoted to HP's vision of always-on Internet infrastructure for customers, which includes "consulting, mission-critical services and the parts that make up Internet infrastructure -- servers, storage and software," said Jan McDaniel, advertising manager for HP.
Those executions are followed by messages about why customers should care about HP's network management products, middleware and other services.
In November, HP rolls out a series of ads with client testimonials about the relevance of its products to their businesses, a first for an HP campaign. Later, specific product executions are planned promoting servers and other network building blocks.
"We want people to know if you're not considering HP, then you're making a big mistake," Ms. McDaniel said.
The campaign starts in the U.S. in daily newspapers, business magazines and online, before rolling out Oct. 8 in European markets and reaching China and Japan by Oct. 15. HP expects to run the campaign through March 2002.
Ms. McDaniel declined to specify spending on the print, outdoor and online effort.
The company's enterprise message is considered crucial as it attempts a complicated merger with Compaq Computer Corp. If the merger is approved by the middle of next year, Compaq's enterprise services will bolster HP's portfolio. Rivals Dell Computer Corp., IBM Corp. and Sun Microsystems are aggressively promoting their objectives in the space, eager to take advantage of HP and Compaq as they work toward a merger.
Publicis Groupe's Publicis & Hal Riney, San Francisco, along with Publicis offices in London, Miami and Singapore, created the campaign that showcases HP's customer-centric approach to Internet infrastructure. Modem Media, San Francisco, is responsible for online advertising.
The ads were shot at HP customer data centers to strike a more intimate tone. The phrase "Infrastructure. It starts with you" appears in many of the executions but is not a tagline.
Times Square charity message
Outdoor ads will appear in more than 20 cities around the world. Two billboards HP had planned for in New York's Times Square will be used by the United Way for the month of October featuring a charity message regarding the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. HP had not decided whether its logo would appear on the boards; the company said it has already donated more than $5 million to the Red Cross and United Way.
HP spent $160 million in measured media in the U.S. in 2000 and $65 million from January to June of this year, according to Taylor Nelson Sofres' CMR.