I am on my way to meet Nico Rijkhoff at Ziggo, one of the Netherlands’ largest broadband and content providers and one of the country’s rising cool brands.
The industry is at a challenging crossroads with technological innovations and competition over pricing. At the same time new players are constantly entering the market in a time of pan-European consolidation.
Nico is Ziggo’s brand director and has been nominated for several awards including Marketeer of the year and Cross Media Man of the year. I ask him to tell me more about the building of the Ziggo brand.
We believe that people are happier when they are connected
“While building a brand, you have to define your purpose.” Nico says, “We are convinced brands should play a role in people’s lives. They should add meaning and make life easier or more inspiring.”
“So what is your purpose?” I ask.
“We at Ziggo believe that people are happier when they are connected. This belief lies at the core of our purpose, ‘to connect you and the world around you, always and everywhere’.
“A recent example is our ‘Connected City’, which is a perfect example of the sharing economy. Ziggo customers share their Internet access with each other; they help each other to connect as it were. Combined with additional access points, we have achieved total coverage in the city center of The Hague. People are connected to friends, family and content in public spaces and parks via Ziggo WifiSpots.“
It’s all about sharing experiences
“I’m starting to get the bigger picture here. You’re building on the promise of connectedness.”
“That’s correct. Connecting as in providing access, but we also believe we have to connect people to each other.
“That’s why we stepped from the online world into the real world,” says Nico, “with the Ziggo Dome, a 17,000-seater music arena where a whole range of global stars have performed. The Ziggo Dome is an important part of our brand promise. Not only do we connect 17,000 fans in the venue; some of the concerts are also made available live online and on television exclusively for Ziggo customers.
“With this we fulfil a fundamental need: ‘to share experiences’.”
From lifestyle brand to love brand
“And what does all this do for the brand?”
“With these different brand activations, we are well underway to creating a lifestyle brand. From the start, we set out to build a brand based on ‘connecting’. Our employees, customers and other stakeholders share this belief.
“This has made our brand meaningful, and turned it into a lifestyle brand. Our next step is to make Ziggo a love brand, meaning that we deliver beyond the expectation of great performance. A love brand reaches your heart as well as your mind. We have all the right ingredients, so by keeping up innovations, setting trends in connectedness and staying close to our customers, we could get there in a few years’ time.”
“But in the meantime, do you have any plans for tonight?” asks Nico with a smile. “I know you love Prince. I’d like to invite you to the concert that’s starting in an hour… right here in the Ziggo Dome.”
I look at him in speechless disbelief for a moment. “Are you serious?”
“100%,” he says as he pulls two tickets from his pocket.
“Talking about a love brand! He’s my favourite artist ever!”
© 2014 CoolBrands – Around the World in 80 Brands
Tags: Connecting you and the world around you, CBNWS, CoolBrands Nextworld Storytelling, CoolBrands, Ziggo, Ziggo Dome, sharing experiences, Nico Rijkhoff, Rijkhoff, Nico Rijkhoff at Ziggo, largest broadband, Cross Media Man, Ziggo brand, Connected City, Ziggo WifiSpots, lifestyle brand