Social Media Helps Cisco Keep GSX on Top of its Game
With its yearly Global Sales Experience—or GSX, as it’s better known—Cisco has evolved what was once a one-and-done annual event into a case study for maximizing the reach and impact of live+digital experiences.
One recent GSX welcomed 20,000 attendees: 5 percent were in broadcast locations, 75 percent were in conference room viewing locations and 20 percent attended remotely. In total, the event took place in more than 350 Cisco conference rooms in 88 locations in 45 countries across 20 time zones.
One new addition to GSX was a Make Connections app, designed to help employees find one another and network—and more than 11,000 employees adopted the technology. Cisco also gave a facelift to the salesperson recognition session, using its own technology to capture the emotional reactions of those who were named the company’s top sellers. The segments were later shared during the live keynote presentation to the global audience. A Team Appreciation app enable attendees to acknowledge the “best of the best” in sales using customized multimedia messages. Nearly half of the global sales team was recognized via the app, and another 23,000 individual congratulations were given in the form of online “high fives” or “fist bumps.”
Also new for the event was Trending Topics—Cisco harnessed GSX social media chatter and posted it on its own event channels, including a live broadcast feed, a virtual event site and a visual word cloud. The strategy was designed to give attendees a shot at being heard in a global context, while bringing virtual attendees from around the world closer to the action in Las Vegas.
Based on attendee feedback—“Most employee-aware event in the world! I’ve never felt more connected from home,” wrote one participant—it worked. Other performance indicators improved, too. Local celebration events’ satisfaction scores were up 6 percent from the previous year. And audience satisfaction scores reached their highest levels since five years earlier, when Cisco last held the event as a face-to-face meeting.