Before working at Write2Market, I got to experience what it was like to undergo an acquisition at my previous job. Our company was acquired by a larger organization that holds a top position in the software industry. Just like with any type of change, internal management and leadership changes can be hard for customers, employees and key stakeholders to adjust to. One of the greatest challenges for a company recently acquired is to maintain their brand and ensure great valuation, all while learning to shift the conversation in a new direction, especially if the acquiring company is an established enterprise with a larger platform. Based on my personal experience, here are three tips for using a great PR strategy to support an exit or acquisition.
Do Your Research
The first step after an acquisition is to conduct research on not only your company’s position in the market in comparison to your competitors, but also where your acquirer stands in the marketplace. Based on this, where does your company fit within the overarching strategy and vision? Is there a new credibility you can take advantage of? What steps need to be taken in order to attain better company alignment? Knowing your company’s current placement can help mold and direct your goal towards a more cohesive message, ultimately leading to greater growth and development.
Figure Out Your Message
A company acquisition brings with it the need to tell a new story. A great PR team can help your company maintain and grow your brand through proper messaging. It’s crucial that your company and the company that acquired you align your strategy and vision to create a cohesive story. Figure out what your new message is, position your company as the best in the field and push your new story through media, events, case studies and social media. Promote milestone announcements, such as vision plans and sales integrations, in conjunction with continued coverage on what your company is already doing.
Rethink Your Audience
Now is the time to reevaluate the key influencers and stakeholders in your company. It’s important that you maintain customer confidence after the acquisition in order to help foster new customer and partner relationships. Engage with your current customers and provide them with the benefits that will come from their continued support. Let them testify on your behalf through case studies and video testimonials. To make sure you’re reaching the right audience, use awards, social media, blog posts, videos and more to grow your presence, push your new message and encourage loyalty amongst your customers and key stakeholders.
For my previous company, constant communication and collaborative, milestone announcements helped them not only maintain a strong brand but also grow the confidence of their customers and key stakeholders in where the company was heading and its new standing in the marketplace. An acquisition or merger doesn’t have to be scary – implement a strong PR strategy and watch your new, greater story unfold with confidence.