Adstream: How do you sell tech to Creatives?

Ian Wheal, Adstream’s Head of Global Strategy, wanted an elevator pitch and a strategic tone of voice for the company’s communications.

The first challenge was that Adstream had acquired several new technology companies over the previous 3 years. Different people had different ideas of the company’s offering, as well as different voices.

The second challenge was also obvious. Adstream is a tech company, but it lives in the Creatives’ world: ad agencies, film production companies, brand-centric companies. Adstream’s language needed to balance its technical offering with a creative appeal.

Do you speak Creative?

We realised that 51% of our job was to build consensus, so we brought the C-suite together for a 1-day workshop.

In advance, we’d carried out a linguistic analysis of the adtech sector, looking at how other firms use language to define (and sometimes limit) their services. This formed the basis of our discussion during the day.

How does tech talk?

We identified a specific trend: London-based tech companies emphasise the functionality of their products. On America’s East Coast, they start to focus more on the benefits for their customers. But when you reach the West Coast, and a company like Slack, they talk about how tech makes you feel.

Our challenge wasn’t to follow the latest trend. It was to see where Adstream most naturally sits along this continuum.

This helped us unlock Adstream’s new positioning and, with the C-suite, we developed a proposition that reflected how they improved their customers’ lives, rather than the technicalities of what their products offered.

Better than we can say it

Adstream now has a clear proposition, a clear and distinctive elevator pitch, it has rewritten its website – and all of it is wrapped in a consistent tone of voice.

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