Our staff has marveled at just how frequently the companies for whom we have provided brand strategy, visual branding and website redesign, have been purchased by larger companies not long afterward.
Soon after we provided branding and web design for our client, Predilytics, a predictive analytics company, they successfully sold their company to Welltok, Inc.
Again, shortly after creating a comprehensive rebrand and launching a new identity for Unica Corporation, they successfully sold to IBM. At about the same time, our client, Netezza, was also sold to IBM. There was also Coley Pharmaceuticals and Targanta Therapeutics; these are but a few client transactions that have happened not long after our collaborations were completed.
Coincidence? I don’t think so. Does it matter that it was our clients’ unspoken plan to be sold? Only in that they felt that RainCastle would do a great job presenting them in a way most advantageous to fulfilling their business objectives.
While it is obvious that our clients’ hard work, deep knowledge, great products and read of the market are the core elements that made them attractive to buyers, it is also evident that their ability to differentiate themselves in words, images and behaviors, of which we made significant contributions, helped both our clients and their suitors feel more confident.
On several occasions, we’ve focused on socializing the new brand internally (to the internal audience — as we did with Unica in their internal brand messaging document, shown below), as much as externally . This creates a common voice, based on leadership’s vision.
From an acquirer’s standpoint, a company with a cohesive vision, consistently expressed, instills confidence. And when a brand provides awareness, relevant differentiation, value, accessibility and emotional connection, both the rational and emotional needs of the buyer are met. In every brand we’ve created, these have been our guiding principles.
In the world of mergers and acquisitions, which are most concerned with hard factors like finances, legal, IT and so forth; cultural fit, vision, messaging, style and visual design are the soft factors which, although less easily quantified, can instill the trust and confidence that may tip decision making the right way.
Articulating differentiation can be almost as fierce a task as innovation. We’ve seen firsthand how difficult it is for many companies to clearly express what they do and why it is distinct and valuable. Providing objectivity to catalyze differentiation has helped yield compelling successes for our clients on the path toward being sold.