Merck: 50,000 brand ambassadors in three steps


Merck: 50,000 brand ambassadors in three steps

Understand brand implementation on a global level and experience it locally

In 2015, Merck launched the most radical brand realignment  in its history with a new brand concept and extraordinary design. The internal brand implementation team were tasked with ensuring that all 50,000 employees in 66 countries, from assembly line workers to neurobiologists were able to understand the realignment, identify with the brand and act as brand ambassadors to the outside world. To make this work, all messages and measures were subjected to a three-stage change process:

Connect: Ensure that the employees are able to understand the values, the new corporate identity and the change process on both a rational and emotional level..

Value: Die Mitarbeiter sollen sich intensiv mit der Marke auseinandersetzen, indem sie die Markenidee in ihre persönlichen Ziele übersetzen und in ihre tägliche Arbeit integrieren.

Identity: Ziel der letzten Phase sind die Identifikation mit Merck und das Repräsentieren der Marke nach innen und außen als Markenbotschafter. So gewinnt Merck als attraktiver Arbeitgeber an Bekanntheit und Relevanz.

Understanding the radical brand change

In the initial “Connect” phase with the new brand, we supported 250 voluntary brand champions worldwide who acted as internal multipliers by helping employees around the globe understand the Merck brand. Brand training, welcome packages and “Brand Espressi” – small, unconventional activities and goodies, were used to communicate the special features of the new brand in an on-brand way. This enabled us to reach all employees on a local level with our global program.

Merck: 50,000 brand ambassadors in three steps

VR translates the brand into everyday life

In the second “Value” phase, employees were invited to immerse themselves deeply in the new brand world with the “Virtual Reality Brand Dome“ . Merck’s virtual reality experience presents the most important brand elements through three interaction possibilities in a playful way and invites employees to connect with the new brand themselves. By using all of the senses, employees are able to engage in a deeper and emotional understanding of the brand.

Change of perspective creates brand ambassadors

In line with the final “Identify” phase, the global “I’M Campaign” adopted a very personal approach to communicate the change in perspective from the “old” to the “new” Merck brand. 56 employees, from technicians and laboratory assistants to the CEO, served as brand ambassadors and illustrated the change in perspective with confident statements such as “I’m not an assistant – I’M a manager manager”. The brand's first birthday in October marked the launch day of the campaign and was the highlight of last year's program. Employees from around the world took the opportunity to celebrate their vibrant brand and highlight how they identify with it and act as true ambassadors locally and on social media.

Merck: 50,000 brand ambassadors in three steps

Success in the company and in the market

The success of this campaign led to a 91% increase in employee recommendations between 2014 and 2016. The brand value similarly climbed by 10.1% to 1.1 Billion Euro in June 2016 (source: Horizont, 7th July 2016).

Merck: 50,000 brand ambassadors in three steps


  • Transform Award, 2x Silber
  • BoB Best of Business-to-Business Award, Gold
  • German Brand Award, Gold and Winner
  • GWA Healthcare Award, Gold