Peter Dinklage Contemplates Our Hyperconnected World in This Epic Ad From Cisco

Timed to GoT finale, spot heralds a new kind of networking

The tech giant is pivoting toward the cloud.

Peter Dinklage isn’t just the conflicted lead in television’s hottest show. He’s also the face of a weighty new product launch campaign from IT giant Cisco.

Two days before the sure-to-be-eventful finale of Game of Thrones’ penultimate season on HBO, the hardware maker turned to the erudite thespian to introduce the world at large to its new “intent-based networking” solutions, which it first announced earlier this summer. The campaign is called “The Network. Intuitive.”

In the three-minute spot, Dinklage walks through modern London tackling some Big Questions that have nothing to do with dragons, monarchies or White Walkers.

For the layman, Cisco’s new offering can help clients speed up various digital operations via “intent-based networking” that effectively enables a given system to learn from experience and predict new challenges. It could, theoretically, protect against future cyber attacks by drawing on recent events.

“To help businesses understand what Cisco’s network makes possible, they need to hear about these innovations in a simple and relatable way. We worked with Ogilvy, our new agency, to develop the idea for the video,” Cisco chief marketing officer Karen Walker wrote in a blog post. “Peter Dinklage is the perfect messenger because of his global fame and ability to speak in a bold, intelligent and captivating way. As he wanders through the streets of London, you hang on each of his words as he describes just how simple—and monumental—the new network is.”

Ogilvy U.S. co-chief creative officer Joe Sciarrotta added: “There is no better way to explain Cisco’s new era of networking than with an intuitive actor like Peter Dinklage.”

Ogilvy won an assignment to promote the launch in the spring, with former agency of record Goodby Silverstein & Partners resigning the account soon afterward.

The timing of the ad is strategic as well. The seventh season of Game of Thrones has been its highest-rated ever, and much of this weekend’s social media chatter will concern the finale.

The digital-only campaign launches today, and will run online and via paid placements across social platforms. So, viewers will ideally be discussing Cisco’s new campaign around the same time as they’re speculating about what might happen in the world of Tyrion Lannister.

Will Cersei willingly join the fight against the Night King? Will Daenerys and Jon Snow get together before realizing they’re related? Will the undead dragon breathe fire or ice?

For now, we can only speculate. But in the real world, Cisco will be working to keep our business networks more secure.

Agency: Ogilvy & Mather
Client: Cisco
Campaign: “The Network. Intuitive. Explained.”

SVP, Chief Marketing Officer: Karen Walker
VP of Global Corporate Marketing and Branding: Michele Janes
VP Products & Solutions Marketing – Enterprise Segment: Inbar Lasser-Raab
Global Lead, Brand Strategy & Content: Kevin Dunbar
Sr. Manager, Global Advertising: Britt Packouz
Global Executive Creative Director: Dennis Lim
Global Executive Creative Director: Scott Habetz

Chief Creative Officer: Joe Sciarrotta
Freelance Creative Director: Dave O’Hare
Photographer, Filmmaker, Creative Director: Andrew Reed
Executive Content Producer: Mike Diedrich
Management Supervisor: Annie Gray
Senior Partner, Executive Group Director: Laura McCullough
Assistant Account Executive: Rachel Haas
Director of Business Affairs: Peter Fedlman

Director: Paul Dektor