Make brand acquisitions more digestible

We’ve written extensively on how to deal with newly acquired brands and you can read about how to manage such transitions from a marketing perspective on our site. But beyond realising the value of the new brand and harnessing its equity in the market, there are often internal tensions around their assimilation.

Many fast-growing companies – and especially in the tech sector – don’t hang around growing organically. They drive through the hockey-stick growth curve via a rapid series of acquisitions. Investors usually demand it and are often the facilitators and introducers in such unions. But after the excitement – and often secrecy – of getting the deal done, it is left to internal staff in marketing and sales to pick up the loose ends and knit them together.

Obviously you want to indoctrinate new staff into your company and make them feel at home. A‘Welcome Aboard’ toolkit should include a guide to the brand they are joining to get them off to a good start. But products may not be so easy to fit together.

Your product marketing teams will bring these products into the fold, form them into your product suites or solutions and rationalise the propositions to show the added value. But, at the same time, these teams are often cash-strapped and must justify every penny of spend. Depending on the metrics you run, the marketing dollars they use up may need to correspond directly to lead generation. This can be a toughie in the early days and diminish or dilute overall results. Not to mention the distraction, no matter how welcome the new acquisition is.

So what’s the answer? Just like newly-weds in life, there are always a lot of expenses to cover. That’s why giving your brand new partner a dowry, a lump of money to be used purely to smooth the integration, is a good idea. Set against the cost of the purchase, this budget will be negligible in the scheme of things, but make for far more successful and frictionless marriages.