160: When’s the Right Time to Rebrand?
“When the time is right, you’ll know.” It feels like an almost trope-ish answer to many of life’s questions, or like the vague wisdom from a mentor in a karate movie. Unfortunately, the utility of that phrase really doesn’t extend to executing a rebrand. So, how did Acquia know it was time to rebrand?
Acquia, an enterprise software company, just topped $200 million in revenue, and has achieved 57% growth in the past three years. Clearly, they’ve been doing some things right, and can feel good about their recent decision to rebrand. So, how did CMO Lynne Capozzi know the timing was right? Well, it took a quite a bit of marketing know-how, a need to stand out in the market, and a desire to really emphasize the company’s purpose: to help people “experience digital freedom.”
Tune in to this week’s episode to hear more about Lynne’s extensive marketing background, their approach to a successful rebrand, the importance of getting internal buy-in, and more. Plus, check out a couple highlights from her interview below!
How did your early years in marketing shape your approach?
I think I learned a few things from that from that whole time. Well, I like to think I learned a lot, but I a few things stand out for me. One is that I did learn have a chance to learn all the different areas of marketing. And that’s really important that you understand that in the full marketing mix. And the other thing that I learned—and this was after we had been acquired by IBM—was that the customer is always right, and I’m a big believer in that. And I’ve learned that early on. And I continue today to emphasize that within my team and within Acquia.
What’s important for forming a successful brand?
Your brand has to have things that you believe in. For Acquía, one of the things that we have in our DNA, and that comes out in our brand, it comes out in our employees and our products, is the whole idea of being open. We are an open source software company. And so the concept of openness and freedom actually is big for us. That is an area that carries over into our brand. It is part of our brand messaging and it’s important to our customers as well, because, you know, we support a very, very large Drupal community—Drupal is open source CMS—which we based our company on. And there are a million and a half people around the world that use Drupal. And that’s a big, huge open source community. And we value that community. And that is, you know, again, that whole idea about being open is part of our DNA. It goes back to our tagline, I think our tag summarize it well: experience digital freedom.
What signaled that it was the right time to rebrand? How do you get started?
We hadn’t changed our image and our initial look since we launched the company in, you know, earlier in 2008. And so it was time it was time for us to have a bit bolder image are our burning end itself was very humble and it kind of came back to our, you know, open source roots around that. But based on the market, we needed to be a bit bolder. We wanted to increase in terms of our general look and feel, have more crisp messaging. And at that time, you know, be ready to talk about how do we stand versus our competition, and be proud of that and have a “new cool look,” as my team says. To get it going, we built a new web site, we had a new look, we had new messaging, we had new colors for our messaging. it was a brighter, bolder, prouder. But it’s important to not just have a new image—there was new messaging that went along with it, that that worked not just for a developer type community, but also for marketers. We had new products that were marketing-based products, and we wanted consistency with our look, our feel, our products, and our messaging.