IBM has long been known for grand challenges and technological feats.

The IBM Watson™ Jeopardy! challenge presented an opportunity to showcase innovation and capture business in an emerging space: natural language processing. 


To make Watson successful, we had to capture positive attention, and then turn that attention into business.

To build positive attention, Watson had to be positioned as part of a movement to help people succeed rather than machines taking over the world. 


Ogilvy worked with IBM to create a Watson identity that used wit to humanize the technology, and content to both explain it and suggest potential business applications.

An integrated marketing campaign began with content on social sites and media prior to and during the Jeopardy! event to capture interest.

Following the event, content and paid media helped audiences understand more about what Watson is and what it means for the future of business. A series of webcasts and exclusive events connected industry leaders to IBMers.

Demand generation captured leads among those interested in buying IBM Power® servers – the technology foundation that Watson was built on. 


The campaign inspired over 10,000 media stories, valued at $50 million in earned media.

Total revenue attributed to the campaign was $170 million, and it generated over 1.3 billion impressions in paid and social media, with 70 percent awareness of Watson and Jeopardy!.

The campaign received Cannes Lions, Clio, ECHO and Effie awards, and the Webby "Person of the Year" award for Watson itself. 

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