As a market leader in manufacturing control systems, Allen-Bradley (A-B) was faced with making its equipment compatible with dozens of emerging communication networks. This involved developing interfaces at an average cost of $1 million each.
A-B and Padilla Speer Beardsley created a program that established its DeviceNet communication network as a de facto industry standard in the United States and a serious contender abroad. Key elements of the program included missionary work with partners and competitors, pre-briefing industry analysts, development of position papers and background educational materials, coordination of a news conference (including an "outside the square" interruptive invitation pictured above) at a major industry tradeshow, and media contact.
More than 120 stories have appeared about the network with an average of three key messages per story. More than 100 of A-B's peers and competitors have stated their intent to adopt the standard, and the company was able to save millions in unnecessary development costs. PSB and Allen-Bradley received a Classics award from the Minnesota Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America for this program.