We all likely spent the waning seconds of 2020 the same way, hoping that time would defy physics and accelerate to get us to 2021 even quicker. Turns out that the older you are, the more likely you experienced just that. As the countdown came, did you and yours decide to make things different, approaching 2021 with the resolve to actually hit your resolutions, whatever they were?
Throughout 2020 (as Ignite Technologies), we rallied to do everything possible to help our customers with the unique circumstances and challenges faced by many. Our entire company of over 4000 team members has been working fully remotely for many years (there’s literally one office in the company, in downtown Austin, TX, where even the Austinites only go if there’s a need). So fortunately for all we serve, we never skipped a beat and were immediately in a position to help our customers around the world to unearth creative solutions to whatever challenges they were facing–from billing and contracts to providing and activating emergency software at no charge. We strived to help customers cope with their new “office” environment they suddenly found themselves in (a CFO from one of our customers retreated to a closet as their working space, and was unabashed in sharing their collection of shoes via Zoom!) to gain some semblance of normality as adjustments continued daily.
It was a challenge for everyone but it brought us closer as a world since it’s such a rarity to have to bind together regardless of country, economic situation, climate condition et al to solve common problems. Through the months, we all ebbed and flowed, twisted and turned, but somehow made it to those last moments of the year that we so desperately needed to fade away. Hindsight had never been so 2020.
Throughout this process, our team learned so much. We took stock in what was important, first and foremost from a personal/family/friends’ point of view, and never lost sight of that priority for mutual support. But we also drew inward to examine just what our professional roles had now become in the wake, exactly who we were and what we wanted to be for our customers as we emerged to tackle 2021 and beyond. This created a level of excitement and energy that surprised us all, and we came together to launch this resolve into action for all of our customers as we finally entered 2021.
ReIgnite! That was our answer — ReIgnite! ReIgnite our brand, our mission, our promise, our commitments — and do so with a bold approach that underlined the curation and sharpening of our focus as a team. From this passion that lit a fire within, we decided to turn that outwards and declare this visually, with a complete rebranding effort across the company, symbolizing the energy in everything we presented to our customers, including our colors, logo and images, and even our name:
Even our external branding expert bought into the mission–just look at their description of our “flame” in our branding guide!
“A blue flame means complete combustion of the gas, hence it is good, it is safe. A blue natural gas flame color is indicative of proper combustion and minimal wasted gas. For IgniteTech it means no wasted knowledge. Everything working at its optimum possibilities.”
This was our moment, the time we left Ignite Technologies symbolically behind, crossed over, and re-emerged as “IgniteTech”. And, the moment we clearly ensured we fully answered the question of who we are.
All of our customers have come to us through an acquisition in one form or another. IgniteTech is part of a 30-year old organization that has created the most amazing approach in Enterprise Software — growth solely through acquisitions. What many of our customers don’t fully appreciate is the condition the companies are in when we acquire them, where we find companies in bankruptcy, out of cash, operating on a skeleton crew, with investors who want out and are ready to pull the plug. With 30 years of running a wide range of platforms, technologies, and solutions, always with an eye on vitality, stability, and proper capitalization, IgniteTech and our sister companies provide the right place for — Software to Go to Live — to grow, to thrive, to be all they can be. With the knowledge gained from over 100 acquisitions that our customers are depending on these software companies, we take that responsibility to heart, and quickly put stable ground under the failing organization, and create a path for innovation and revitalization so the customers who are part of this acquisition can count on the solution for as long as they need.
This new tagline that you’ll find extending throughout materials makes this clear. We’re here for you, and only you. That’s a reality that many of our customers are unaware of.
We actually say “No” to a new customer wanting to license our solutions. Why? There are certainly scholarly writeups on metrics of “Customer Acquisition Cost” versus retention from an economic standpoint, and the summaries are well known. And for many of the companies that we end up acquiring, their P&Ls often illustrate that this mad pursuit is what undid them in the end (“What’s that I see? $10m of revenue, and $12m in Sales and Marketing Cost??”). The core reason here is that it underlines our true commitment with full transparency — to do all that’s possible to support the good people who have already invested.
IgniteTech has taken it to the extreme, and I’ve driven it deeply throughout the organization, all the way to the team manning our online chat facility now generally available on the IgniteTech website:
The message is clear–we are here for you. Our ReIgnited passion holds clear that 100% of our team, from top to bottom, is driving for your success. And as the CEO leading this talented and energized team, I’m your executive advocate to ensure you are successful with the Software that Came to Live with us, and is, and will continue to be, our focus.
What’s next? Throughout Q1 of 2021 my team is fired up and ready to go to facilitate a “roadshow” of 1:1 meetings between me and the CxOs at our customers who have accountability to ensure the vendor spend with IgniteTech is a great decision on their part. It’s a virtual roadshow under current constraints, but the team, with the IgniteTech flame rekindled and burning in their hearts, has come up with ways to make this both creative and fun. I’m so excited about these meetings and you should be too–I promise it will be one of the most valuable meetings you take this year.
So here we are — 2021, with still challenges to face; but we’re stronger together than apart, so join us in this spirit with the full knowledge that we’re ready to light the path for you as you strive for your best year.