How do you effectively establish credibility and build brand recognition in large, crowded markets when a pandemic completely upends your traditional tactics?

This was the challenge a new metro and long-haul provider faced as it sought to penetrate the carrier and wholesale markets when tradeshows and in-person events were no longer an option during the COVID-19 pandemic. Through its partnership success model, the Ciena Partner Network (CPN) helped the provider pivot to a new marketing strategy with digital campaigns, educational content, and targeted outreach.

CPN mobilized its Marketing as a Service (MaaS) team and met with the provider to learn more about its business objectives and target customer audience and explore how its marketing could evolve during the pandemic.

Through several collaborative sessions, the MaaS team and the provider identified Tier 1 target accounts and built initial contact lists for strategic engagement. Then, the MaaS team found better ways to leverage the unique sales and marketing tools already in place and paired the client’s existing marketing assets with new resources from Ciena. Together, the teams implemented and deployed a powerful marketing technology stack.

Armed with these revamped resources, a dual-wave campaign was deployed to drive wholesale buyer interest at multiple touch points:

  • Wave 1 was designed to build brand awareness, engage prospects, and expand differentiation from competitors through refined messaging and personalization. After a comprehensive content effectiveness and gap analysis, the team developed and deployed new short- and long-form content, thought leadership articles, email campaigns, and website landing pages.
  • Wave 2 focused on attracting target audiences in high-bandwidth Global Content Networks (GCNs) and financial services with a unique, compelling offer via customized tele-prospecting, advertising, and account targeting.

By engaging prospects across multiple channels throughout the pandemic, the campaign achieved  impressive results:

  • 384 web visits and an average 40 percent click-through rate from more than 31,350 sent emails
  • 795 clicks from more than 140,000 targeted LinkedIn impressions
  • 2,500 users at Tier 1 accounts reached through account-based marketing

This new program outperformed traditional trade show marketing efforts, generating eight new business opportunities at Tier 1 accounts and adding approximately $45,000 in monthly recurring revenues. One of the opportunities has an estimated total contract value of more than $2 million.

This collaborative project demonstrates that through the partnership success model, CPN can help partners develop both foundational and easily adaptable sales and marketing tools to achieve their unique business goals. It’s one more example of how CPN continues to find new ways to create value for its members and drive real results.

About Ciena MaaS 

Through the partnership success model, members of the CPN can leverage a dedicated MaaS support team, resources, tailored services, and a suite of third-party sales and marketing technologies to support their unique business goals. The MaaS program’s marketing technology stack ensures clients get the benefit of the latest sales enablement and marketing tools and intelligence—without the heavy price tag and long-term contracts. With MaaS, Ciena partners have access to an unparalleled marketing strategy and tactical resources, along with detailed success reporting to monitor how marketing investments are driving business success.

Learn more about CPN’s Marketing as a Service offering

*The products and services described here are available only to participants in the Ciena Partner Network (CPN). For more information about CPN, contact