Verizon to launch major new ad campaign touting IoT efforts

Lowell McAdam Verizon
Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam. (Verizon)

Verizon is preparing to launch an aggressive new ad campaign as it hopes to expand beyond its traditional wireless business into a multi-faceted corporation touching a wide variety of industries.

The Wall Street Journal reported today that the nation’s No. 1 mobile network operator will unveil “Humanability” this Sunday, a campaign touting its progress in IoT-centric areas such as smart cities, keeping food fresh, and connected healthcare. Among other things, the effort will illustrate how Verizon’s offerings ease traffic flow in Sacramento, Calif., and prevent seafood from spoiling in transit.

“That obviously has a lot to do with our transition from being seen as a wireless carrier to really putting us square in the center, and (as) a leader, as a technology brand,” Verizon CMO Diego Scotti told the Journal. “We’re also expanding from wireless to smart cities, the internet of things, telematics and now also the media and ad business.”

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Indeed, Verizon—like its top rival AT&T—has moved aggressively beyond its core business as it struggles with a U.S. wireless market that is all but stagnant. The carrier posted a 5.1% year-over-year decline in service revenue in the third quarter, and while its 274,000 retail postpaid phone net adds soundly beat expectations, analysts question whether Verizon can keep up the pace in an era of increasing network parity.

Verizon is clearly gaining some ground aside from its traditional business, however. It posted a 13% year-over-year increase in organic revenue in its burgeoning IoT business in the latest quarter, thanks largely to its telematics division. And its Oath division—which comprises media properties such as AOL and Yahoo—generated $2 billion in revenue, although many analysts question the viability of that business.

Regardless, Verizon is clearly—and rightly—eager to invest in a variety of segments to offset slowing growth of the traditional mobile business on which it has built its empire. It stands to reason, then, that the next step is to inform consumers about how that’s happening.

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