Describe the company – Elevator Pitch?
Our solution does Brand Performance Measurement.
We prove and predict the financial contribution of brand investments. The components bits include:
- Benchmarking brand performance against category peers
- Linking business investments (impacting brand) to financial business contributions
- Forecasting the financial impact of brand investments
- Dashboards for tracking KPIs to convert financial objectives into a track record of success
The challenge we address is this: most business investments affect brand. Yet, most go unmeasured. Companies that understand the origin(s) of brand contribution invest more efficiently. They move more quickly to generate profit, reduce cost, and improve quality.
We help build a track record of success that ensures more funds to invest. That’s critical because brand is lever. Its performance affects – significantly – the value of all other assets.
Our customers commonly ask: what kind of returns are we getting on the money we invest in Sales versus Customer Service? Advertising versus R&D? Which customer service journeys drive the highest value to which segment? Which of these activities drives the most profit and growth? Which put us at risk?
How are you different?
We are unique in a number of ways. First, we focus on performance. The core of our team comes out of Brand Finance, a London-based brand valuation firm. Value is the result of performance. We focus on the identifying and measuring how initiatives create financial value.
We also bring unmatched credentials and experience. We contribute directly to the development of the International Standards Organization (ISO) TC289 for Brand Evaluation. We also contribute to the Marketing Accountability Standards Board (MASB) Methodology for Intangible Asset Valuation.
We developed the first post-graduate course on the Financial Measurement of Brand in North America (University of Toronto) and it is now syndicating. Our Board includes the former global head of brand for Citi, the former CEO of the AMA, an esteemed professor emeritus at Northwestern University, and a former principal at Landor, among others.
Why will the company do well?
We have no competitors. The category for measuring brand performance is new. We identified it, which gives us some advantages in determining its scope, shape, and texture.
Also, we sell a zero-capital-cost managed service (think SAAS) backed by expert support. So payback is fast, we can be funded from operating budget, and can those costs can be syndicated across LOBs. We’re easy.
Companies that know how to allocate capital generate disproportionate growth. Our capabilities make us a framework for long-term value creation and system of institutional memory. That benefits companies two ways. First as an ongoing service, we need not run the full measure of research to respond to inquiries. We can answer questions now. Second, we maintain the history of success, and so act as a natural framework for planning and operations – even when leadership changes.
Where are you based?
Our founders are split between Toronto and New York.
When was the company launched?
Mark Radhakrishnan and Edgar Baum conceived the idea in the summer. Tracy Chong and Tony Wenzel rounded out the team in October. We soft launched in late November and formally sprung the business formally in 2016.
Right now, we’re bootstrapping our way through. Though we are considering options for external funding.
What have been biggest wins to date?
Assembling our Board of Advisers was a big win. They’re heavy hitters. We’re blessed and grateful to have them.
In terms of customers, we like to name Facebook, but other customers include: a large international telco company, a regional retailer, a large international asset manager, a small eco-brand, a top three Canadian bank, and a regional US bank.
What is the market segment?
Our solution is best suited to large B2B brands.
We bring a broad range of experience across industries. Though for now, our sales efforts are focused on the technology and financial services verticals.
The best segment is the one containing the people who are ready for you now. The compelling buying events for our solution are large and strategic. Commonly, our prospect companies are considering strategy for:
- Rationalization and budgeting
- New product, new market, new policy activations
- MD&A assessments and integrations
Tell us about your team.
We have a diverse group from around the planet. Europe, Asia, Canada, and the US are represented.
Edgar Baum is the mad scientist bringing the math, portfolio modeling, brand theory, and inspirational genius. Delta Tau Chi pledge name: Doc, from Back to the Future.
Mark Radhakrishnan missed his calling as an IDEO designer. To make up for it, he does the hard analytic stuff here. He provides equal parts deliberate practitioner, straight man, and timely comedic relief. Delta Tau Chi pledge name: Spock, from Star Trek.
Tracy Chong is the self-proclaimed shite-disturber and all-round disrupter pushing us to the edge… and beyond. Delta Tau Chi pledge name: Ripley, from Alien.
Tony Wenzel is the tortured-soul software nerd who’s never satisfied with things the way they are and is always pushing for the next thing. Delta Tau Chi pledge name: Dr. Indiana Jones, from Raiders of the Lost Ark.
What are your long term plans for the company?
Our mission is to institutionalize world-class brand performance. Brand is both qualitative and quantitative. We’d like to change forever how companies measure brand and understand business investments.
In addition to our customer-focused work, we hope to use our industry analyses to build a performance index to inform equity investors who want to participate in a particular segment.
Brand decisions should be based on financial objectives not guesswork. We succeed when we become integral to the planning and operations of large companies.
What are your favorite tech gadgets?
Business tools wise, the Canadian team is 100% iPhone. The US team is Google Nexus. Everybody runs both Mac and PC with different levels of bias and the requisite snide bickering. 😉 We use Salesforce.com and Office 365. Though this year, with 366 days, I guess we’ll have to schedule an extra day off to accommodate Microsoft.
What tech gadgets do you wish you could use to help you?
In terms of business process, we really love Demo Chimp. They’re a startup focused on shortening the sales cycle with custom-compiled video that can be shared via email or on web sites. Prospects take 15 second survey and the video renders to suit. It connects viewer and interests, even when forwarded. We haven’t moved on it yet, mostly due to workload, but we think it is perfect for us.
CMOs vs CFOs — GETTING THEM ON THE SAME SIDE OF BRAND. https://t.co/heXgzg9XbE
— Strata Insights (@StrataInsights) November 17, 2015
How people get in touch with you?
Tony Wenzel owns our business development efforts. His email is tony @stratainsights.com.
Our web site is www.stratainsights.com.