Implementing a merger and acquisition is one of the hardest things any business can do. It involves several moving parts, lots of preparation, and high-pressure conditions. When it’s finally over, many business owners believe that all the hard work is behind them. But that’s far from the truth. The most important work takes place within the first 90 days post-acquisition.
Marketing is especially critical during the period after the acquisition. A strong marketing plan will secure your company and set it apart from competitors. In this article, we’ll cover five marketing tips every business must consider after an acquisition.
Update customer communication plan
The first step to take in the early days post-acquisition is to update your communication plan. By doing so, you’ll increase customer engagement, loyalty, and user retention. Research has shown that user retention and customer loyalty are particularly vital.
According to Marketing Metrics, businesses have a 60 to 70% chance of selling to an existing customer. But only a 5% to 20% chance of selling to new prospects. Research from Bain & Company also shows that a 5% increase in customer retention can increase profits by as much as 25-95%.
Look at these stats, and it’s easy to see why having a solid communication plan makes sense. But how exactly do you create a plan that works? Here are five simple steps you can follow:
- Define your goals and objectives
- Figure out what makes your business stand out from the competition
- Choose the right target audience for your messaging
- Pick your communication channels
- Execute your plan
When creating a plan, make sure you get input from all relevant stakeholders. For example, these could be your customers, employees, partners, and suppliers. The more information you get, the more refined your plan will be.
Define branding strategy
Once you’ve created a communication plan, you’ll need to create your branding strategy. Branding is something that you cannot ignore. In fact, a consistent brand has been shown to increase average revenue by 23%.
The key to developing an effective branding strategy is to know all the aspects that make up a brand. A brand is more than just a logo or a name. Instead, it’s made of all the intangible elements connected to your customer needs.
Within the first 90 days of an acquisition, it’s essential to make sure that your branding matches customer expectations. The best way to do this is through market research and customer surveys. Find out what your customers value and then add those elements to your brand.
If you want to see an example of great branding, take a look at Apple. Their branding resonates highlights the same qualities as their products. It’s targeted to customers who are innovative, imaginative, and creative.
Remember, a brand isn’t contained within your company. It’s something that exists only in the minds of your customers. Your goal should be to increase the number of positive customer experiences. That will do wonders for your branding.
Run an audit
In most cases, you won’t have to make major changes to your marketing after an acquisition. If there are strategies that are already working, then you shouldn’t change that for the sake of it.
Conduct a full audit of all marketing campaigns. It will help you figure out what’s working and what isn’t. You should audit every part of your strategy, from digital all the way to any offline campaigns.
Depending on the size of your company post-acquisition, an audit can take a few days to a few months to complete. You should be looking at three components when creating your audit. These include the marketing environment, marketing organization, and marketing functions.
- Marketing environment. The position of your business relative to your industry, market, and competitors.
- Marketing organization. This is how workers at different levels of your company perform when it comes to marketing. It also includes the policies that are in place to support their roles.
Marketing functions. This refers to your company’s core marketing competencies. For example, its communication channels and salesforce.
Use Content Marketing
Creating content is another crucial step to take 90 days post-acquisition. Customers today expect to find answers to all their problems online. That’s why content marketing is included as one of our marketing tips.
Content marketing allows you to position your brand as an authority on any topic. It also helps your website rank for keywords on search engines. This further leads to an increase in traffic and conversions.
According to Pew Research, 81% of Americans say they go online on a daily basis. Among them, 28% go online almost always, 45% go online several times a day, and 9% go online about once a day. Content marketing allows you to reach these customers with valuable content. These could include blog posts, infographics, ebooks, and more.
Connect with Customers Via Texts and Emails
Keeping in touch with existing customers is also necessary after an acquisition. You can keep things simple and send out an email announcement about the acquisition. But you can also create a text messaging campaign to share this news and other updates.
Text messaging is a highly effective channel for reaching customers. It is the #1 most used way of communication among Americans younger than 50. Furthermore, 89% of people always have their smartphones easily accessible.
The key to creating a high performing text messaging campaign is to choose the right platform. With it, you’ll be able to track the performance of each of your messages and make any changes along the way
Final Thoughts On Marketing Tips
An acquisition doesn’t have to be stressful. If you take steps to plan things out, everything will go a lot smoother. Be sure to pay close attention to the 90 days after an acquisition. This period can make or break your business.
If you follow the marketing tips we covered, customers will know what to expect from your brand. They’ll also be able to tell you apart from competitors and be more likely to become loyal to your business. That, in turn, will lead to more sales and profits. And of course, long-term growth for your business.