Amidst Facebook’s biggest branding crisis, it’s just hired a veteran CMO formerly of Pepsi and Visa to boost the social network’s external image and cross-promote features inside its apps. Antonio Lucio today announced he’ll be leaving his role as HP’s CMO after three years to take that post at Facebook starting September 4th. He’s replacing Gary Briggs, who in January said he’d be stepping down after five years to advise companies and work with the Democrats.
Lucio’s hispanic background and his efforts to champion inclusion will bring needed diversity to Facebook’s management, whose CEO, COO, CFO, CTO and CFO are all white.
Lucio will report to Chief Product Officer Chris Cox and be part of Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg’s leadership team. Facebook confirms he’ll work across the company’s family of apps, including Instagram and WhatsApp, which both lack a named CMO. Prior to HP, Lucio was Visa’s chief marketing and communications officer for seven years, and had been at PepsiCo leading innovation and beverage marketing for eight years before that.
“Facebook’s story is at an inflection point. We have never faced bigger challenges, and we have never had more opportunities to have a positive impact on the world — in our families, our friendships, our communities, and our democracy — by improving our products at their core, and then by telling the story outside that we all know to be true inside,” Cox wrote on Facebook. “[Lucio] has been outspoken on the need to build authentic global brands with integrity and from places of principle, and also on the importance of building diverse teams at every level in the organization.”
Lucio is well-versed in the flowery philosophical rhetoric common at Facebook. He describes himself on LinkedIn as someone “who’s mission in life is to build brands that stand the test of time. These brands are anchored in purpose; have a meaningful impact on people’s lives; are built through strong emotional connections; behave with integrity and are constantly reinventing themselves to deliver their purpose.”