Georgia Tech Research Institute

For 75 years, the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) had been delivering highly-regarded applied research, primarily to government agencies and industry. 

As GTRI sought to reach out to new markets in the private sector, it discovered its “story” was too complex for commercial audiences – but “dumbing it down” risked alienating existing government customers. For Arketi Group it was a case of problem, solved.

Challenge

GTRI, a nonprofit institute within the renowned Georgia Tech was making a strategic move into new markets in the private sector, while maintaining its traditional line of business with government agencies.

With innovative solutions and positive – sometimes unexpected and amazing – outcomes, GTRI had a strong story to tell. But that story was complex and challenging to communicate. 

How could the institute tailor its message to appeal more to commercial audiences, without alienating existing government customers?

GTRI turned to Arketi Group to develop and deploy new messaging that would:

  • convey the value behind the research being done at GTRI for government as well as industry/commercial and philanthropic sponsors
  • articulate what the organization does and how it is different from other research alternatives
  • resonate with existing and new sponsors in a way that supports GTRI’s growth goals
  • support and articulate the synergy between GTRI and Georgia Tech.

Solution

To uncover GTRI’s unique positioning, Arketi Group began with a series of formal sessions to determine truly differentiating characteristics about GTRI’s capabilities. Arketi held an in-depth Unearth session with more than 15 top level managers. The firm also completed an internal questionnaire with dozens of lab directors, GTRI employees and members of the board of advisors, to assess their beliefs about the strengths of the organization, its attributes and culture.

From the research, Arketi developed a positioning platform, based on specific target audiences and influencers important to GTRI, that identified GTRI’s key differentiators. 

Arketi then conducted an online survey and in-depth interviews with GTRI’s employees to garner feedback about the new positioning.

Arketi articulated GTRI's differentiators in the pithy statement – Problem. Solved. – two words that convey the very essence of what GTRI has been doing since 1934. 

This concept reinforces the exceptional expertise found within GTRI, and speaks to the needs of both government and commercial entities. It is positive, active, flexible, extensible and focused on the benefit to the customer.

With the new positioning and messaging completed, GTRI was able to construct a new website to launch their unprecedented business development strategy. The new tagline and messaging platform created by Arketi is used in all aspects of marketing, from brochures, print and online materials, posters and newsletters to GTRI’s annual report. 

Arketi Group also assisted GTRI with the development of visuals that showcase the institute's unique problem-solving processes.

Results

Since the new positioning and accompanying messaging was launched through various marketing programs and sales support materials, the results have been compelling. 

One hundred qualified leads were obtained in the first year of launching the new messaging on GTRI's new website. GTRI has also increased its sales process consistency and efficiency as a result of clear, concise messaging and vertical market focus. Most importantly, GTRI saw a 42 percent increase in revenue in the first 12 months, reaching a research contract record, and topping $200 million for the first time in its 75 year history.

Kudos

The tagline and messaging Arketi developed for Georgia Tech Research Institute has won several awards:

Research/Evaluation

Public Relations Society of America Phoenix Award

Marketing Business-to-Business

Public Relations Society of America Phoenix Award

Overall Strategic Communication Program

IABC Southern Region Silver Quill Award of Excellence

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Uniting Messaging and Segmentation for Better Marketing Results

This 30-minute webinar replay presents a proven process for successfully positioning a BtoB organization. We take a look at some smart tech companies and the messaging and segmentation exercises they apply to develop messaging that works at the corporate level, for specific markets and for different product and service lines.