Posted 05.22.2024 by Josh Krakauer

The Easy Guide to Announcing an Acquisition on Social Media

Learn how to announce an acquisition and lay the foundation for a positive and prosperous post-acquisition future.

Announcing a company acquisition on social media looks easy on the surface, but it’s complex in practice.

First of all, an acquisition announcement is a challenge where different perspectives on timing and messaging converge.

For instance, a company owner or majority shareholder might see it as an opportunity to communicate a major success in the long and winding entrepreneurial journey.

Then there’s the C-suite perspective, for whom acquisitions represent a strategic action to shape the company’s future trajectory.

Can you tell who’s in the right and who’s in the wrong here?

On top of this, there’s another challenge to address: The potential impact on brand identity and reputation.

If not handled well, a company can face skepticism, backlash, and even a minor panic after announcing an acquisition.

Therefore, the goal goes beyond releasing a quick communication piece.

It’s about ensuring that the announcement aligns with the brand’s values, maintains a positive narrative, and addresses potential concerns.

In this line, this is what we’ll share in this article:

Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be able to manage an acquisition announcement on social media like a pro.

What is an acquisition announcement?

An acquisition announcement is the unveiling of a significant business purchase, strategically communicated to stakeholders and the greater public.

Announcing an acquisition can be a pivotal moment for a company, and requires careful crafting of both copy and visuals to convey the vision behind the move (and sometimes, the financial intricacies involved in the acquisition as well).

These announcements influence the perception of both companies (the one acquiring and the one getting acquired) by investors, employees, and the broader market.

Worth noting, that acquisition announcements should be made by the company or person making the acquisition. Unless there’s an agreement on letting the acquired company disclose first, this is usually how it’s done.

Acquisition announcement components

An acquisition announcement typically comprises several components to convey the details of the transaction and address stakeholder interests.

Here are the 10 most important ones:

1. Introduction/opening:

  • Briefly introduce the announcement and its significance.
  • Set a positive tone to capture attention (i.e. excitement, celebration, enthusiasm).

2. Acquirer and target Information:

  • Identify the acquiring company and the target company (dropping the name won’t suffice).
  • Provide details about both entities, such as their industry, size, and market presence.

3. Strategic intent:

  • Articulate the strategic reasons behind the acquisition (the main reason why).
  • Explain how the acquisition aligns with the acquirer’s long-term goals and enhances its position in the market.

4. Financial details:

  • Share key financial aspects, such as the deal value, purchase price, or financial structure (i.e. cash only, cash plus equity, one-time payment, installments).
  • Highlight any anticipated financial benefits or synergies.

5. Impact on operations:

  • Explain how the acquisition will impact day-to-day operations.
  • Address any changes to leadership, structure, or business processes.

6. Message to employees:

  • It’s the communication sent to employees, providing context for the acquisition’s impact on the workforce. Usually internal and confidential.

7. Message to customers and clients:

  • Tell customers how the acquisition will impact service and support (if negatively, make sure to bring solutions to the table as well).
  • Highlight potential benefits or improvements resulting from the acquisition.

8. Message to investors/shareholders:

  • Communicate the strategic value of the acquisition to shareholders.
  • Address any potential concerns and outline the expected impact on shareholder value.

9. Timeline/next steps:

  • Provide a brief timeline of the acquisition process (and don’t be afraid to sprinkle some epicness into the mix!).
  • Outline any upcoming milestones or integration steps.

10. Contact information:

  • Include relevant contact details for media inquiries. Pack this information nicely and be ready to distribute it to avoid any hiccups.
  • Guide stakeholders to the appropriate channels for questions or concerns.

Naturally, it’d be unrealistic to share all this information on social media.

For example, some of the components above are usually meant for internal distribution only (message to employees, financial details), and others can be too dry for social media (i.e. next steps, message to customers).

Having a bird’s-eye view of all the elements will allow you to pick the most important elements when communicating an acquisition on your social channels.

Acquisition announcement examples

Real-life examples are a great way to understand the do’s and don’ts of acquisition announcements for social media.

Below you’ll find four acquisition examples published on X: Two good ones, and two that could’ve been better.

1. Good one: Microsoft acquires Activision Blizzard

In 2022, Microsoft announced the acquisition of the legendary game development studio Activision Blizzard.

To do that, they published a short thread on X (using Xbox’s account, not Microsoft’s) that received over 180,000 likes, 69,000 retweets, and 10,000 comments.

activision acquisition

What we like about this acquisition announcement:

  • Conveys the kind of excitement you expect from the videogame industry.
  • Provides resources to learn more about the acquisition.
  • Highlights what Xbox/Microsoft gets from the acquisition (legendary game franchises and lots of development talent).
  • Breaks down information into short, digestible bits.

Even though we’re talking household names here, the impact of this announcement was both massive and positive.

2. Good one: L3Harris acquires Aerojet Rocketdyne

L3Harris is an American tech and defense company – one of the biggest out there, to be precise.

In 2023, they announced the acquisition of Aerojet Rocketdyne, a leading firm in the development of rocket propulsion systems.

They did so in a succinct, but very effective manner – by posting an impressive video of the company and tech they were purchasing.

rocketdyne acquisition

What we like about this acquisition announcement:

  • Keeps it brief on social media while pointing to an extended, detailed version of the announcement.
  • Visuals! The start of the announcement is a video featuring all the stuff that you’d expect from a Michael Bay movie: Fire-spitting engines, warplanes, rockets, tanks, and missiles.

Talk about getting shareholders excited!

3. Bad one: Globant acquires AtixLabs

In 2021, software services giant Globant announced the acquisition of a blockchain development company called AtixLabs.

While these were pandemic times, the use of a picture where everyone is wearing face masks failed to prompt positive reactions from the audience.

Furthermore, the words employed in the post were in line with this (perceived) lack of transparency, offering very little information on what the acquired company actually does, and what it adds to Globant’s vision and ops.

globant acquisition atixlabs

What we don’t like about this acquisition announcement:

  • Lack of transparency: Neither the copy nor the picture helps the audience understand what’s going on.
  • Tone: There’s no excitement, no happiness, and no soul in this announcement. It feels more like a chore than a milestone.

Bad one: Cummins acquires a business unit from Faurecia

Cummins manufactures – hear me out – hydrogen-powered trains and electric earth movers.

It has everything to become a dream brand…except for a good social media strategy, perhaps.

In 2023, they announced the acquisition of a business unit from another company, and, well, mistakes were made.

cummins acquires faurecia

What we don’t like about this acquisition announcement:

  • Even though they kept it short, the word choice was incredibly complicated and dry.
  • A block of text as the main visual? Please, just don’t.

How do you announce a company acquisition on social media?

Now that we’ve covered definitions and examples, let’s move on to something more practical: Crafting acquisition announcements for social media.

To do that, we can recommend following a series of simple rules:

  • Consider your medium and audience: This is social media, not a PR page. You’re dealing with a broad audience, all kinds of stakeholders, and limited attention.
  • Be clear and concise: Convey the most important details, and share the strategic reason behind the acquisition. Don’t try to match a character count from the get-go; instead, write a longer message and trim the fat.
  • Humanize the message: Once you have a working draft, make sure to add a human touch. Stories from the journey, quotes from leadership, and emotions are all fair game.
  • Stay on-brand: Ensure consistency in branding across all communication channels. Maintain a unified visual and tonal identity to strengthen the company’s brand during the transition.
  • Use effective visuals: Enhance your announcement with visually appealing content, such as infographics or videos. Visuals can simplify complex information and make the announcement more engaging.
  • Timing: Time your announcement to minimize uncertainty and speculation. Don’t let key stakeholders such as employees and shareholders to learn about the acquisition from your social media channels – they must know beforehand.
  • Provide additional resources and follow-up communications: Keep your audience informed and engaged with links to assets that provide more detail on the acquisition and its implications.
  • Be ready to engage: Draft responses to anticipate different types of reactions, and deliver them in a timely manner.

And finally, don’t foster a positive and informed reception from your audience.

How do you respond to reactions to an acquisition announcement?

In the aftermath of an acquisition announcement, you’ll need to be ready to respond to reactions.

Depending on several factors, these can come in all shapes, sizes, and tones, including highly positive and highly negative ones.

Here are some important tips to keep in mind when answering:

  • Positive reactions: Express gratitude and amplify the positive sentiments. You can even reshare some of these to reinforce the positive aspects of the acquisition.
  • Negative reactions: Acknowledge concerns, respond with empathy, and provide additional context to offer a more comprehensive perspective while softening the impact.
  • Questions and inquiries: Address them in a timely and transparent manner. Provide links to resources and bring the conversation to a context that you can control.
  • Employee concerns: If handled well beforehand, you shouldn’t find any of these, but in the case you do, acknowledge concerns, reassure employees about their roles, and provide information on how the acquisition will impact them. Also, never lose your personal touch with employees!

Finally, stay professional at all times, even when responding to unfounded, unhinged criticism. At the same time, be ready to monitor and moderate to maintain a respectful and constructive conversation.

Final thoughts

As you’ve seen, crafting a successful acquisition announcement involves more than just disseminating information: It’s about understanding different perspectives, crafting thoughtful communication, and handling reactions.

By embracing the principles outlined in this guide, you’ll be able to announce acquisitions successfully, and also to lay the foundation for a positive and prosperous post-acquisition future.

And if you feel like you’re not ready yet or need an expert’s eyes on your current efforts, you can always drop us a line – we’re always up for unique, rare challenges!

Josh Krakauer

Josh Krakauer is the CEO of Sculpt, that B2B social media agency you just discovered. Josh has launched social media campaigns for best-selling books, publicly-traded corporations, and early-stage startups. Josh works from Washington, DC, but still thinks Iowa City is the best city on earth.

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