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Marketing strategy helps drive success

13 May 2014

When North East technology business Hyperdrive Innovation decided to go for growth, it appointed Horizonworks as its strategic marketing partner and since then the relationship has gone from strength to strength… and yielded exceptional results.

Hyperdrive Innovation is really going places. Ingenious, creative and visionary, this engineering company is a prime example of cutting edge British industry.

Based in the North East, the firm provides electronic vehicle drive systems for automotive, industrial, offshore and subsea applications. It is at the forefront of electronic and low carbon vehicle technologies, and boasts an impressive track record in R&D – its products include engine control systems, sensors, data loggers and range extending systems.

When the time came to launch a range of new technologies, Hyperdrive Innovation turned to Horizonworks to develop a marketing strategy which would drive the company forward. The strategy provided both an informed and independent perspective on the markets for its products, and a focus for the company’s commercial activities, targeting increased sales as well as supporting diversification into new markets.

Receptive to new ideas, but lacking an in-house marketing resource, the company required a team who could combine strategic thinking with creativity, industry know-how and the ability to deliver results. Working with Horizonworks, that’s exactly what it received.

Last year, we undertook a thorough communications audit for Hyperdrive Innovation, looking at the business through the eyes of staff, customers, directors and competitors, analysing its market… and leaving no stone unturned. This benchmarking exercise allowed us to set new marketing objectives, define the company’s messaging and recommend a programme of tactical PR and marketing activities – creating a blueprint for the future.

The marketing strategy was well received by the firm’s management team and we were appointed to deliver our recommendations. We’ve since undertaken a wide range of activities for Hyperdrive Innovation, from creating a fresh, modern brand, developing a new website and producing marketing brochures, to rolling out an e-marketing campaign, implementing a PR programme and designing exhibition materials. Their successful and timely completion has been underpinned by a finely honed marketing strategy.

Hyperdrive Innovation has also benefited from Newcastle Science City’s business support services (Horizonworks is one of Newcastle Science City’s four approved providers of marketing services as part of the business support programme) and investment from Rivers Capital Partners, which manages the Finance for Business £7.5 million North East Angel Fund.

In addition, we’ve helped the firm to access the Investment For Growth funding stream, which supports SMEs in the North East, and funding from GrowthAccelerator, which is designed to support high growth businesses.

The results of Horizonworks’ holistic approach have driven a step change in Hyperdrive Innovation’s business, providing the tools to effectively showcase the company and its achievements and providing reassurance of the quality of its products and service delivery.

Our work has created the right perceptions to build its brand in the marketplace to support project bids and generate incoming enquiries for larger contracts and R&D collaborations. In short, we’ve helped to position Hyperdrive Innovation as a major player, with the ability to compete on a national level. And in February 2014, the firm recorded 300 per cent year on year sales growth as a result of new product developments and securing national R&D contracts.

It has been thrilling to work with such a forward thinking company and to see it thrive, with a tailor-made marketing strategy providing the bedrock for both its current success and future expansion.

In the words of Stephen Irish, managing director of Hyperdrive Innovation: “The strategy provided an excellent insight into our business and a marketing roadmap to drive forward the ambitious growth of the company. Horizonworks’ approach to working with us is constantly evolving to support the needs of our business, from strategy development and rebranding to raising profile in industry press and targeting new clients.”

Proof, if it was needed, that a focused, effective marketing strategy should be at the heart of any organisation.

Q&A with Stephen Irish
Managing Director, hyperdrive innovation

Why was it the right time to embark on a marketing strategy exercise?
We initially set up the business to serve the automotive industry, but were becoming more and more aware of emerging opportunities in other applications for our new products and engineering services. It was important for us to look at the bigger picture before making any significant investment in our marketing programme.

Why did you engage with Horizonworks?
We were initially impressed by their technical capabilities and industry experience – working together they demonstrated a willingness to get under the skin of our business by speaking to clients, partners and colleagues, and this gave us confidence in their process.

What immediate impact did the strategy have?
The strategy helped us to prioritise as a business and backed up decisions for how our brand should be developed to position us more effectively in both the automotive industry and in new markets.

Has it worked?
I have no doubt that the investment has paid dividends as our brand is now so much stronger and we have gone on to win bigger commercial contracts and higher profile technology collaborations. Our profile has been enhanced through timely coverage in quality engineering publications, such as IMECHE Professional Engineering, and we now have the brand collateral to back up our business proposition.

What’s next?
We retain Horizonworks for all of our marketing and communications. Following a move to new, bigger facilities at the Future Technology Centre in Sunderland, we’re currently embarking on a business development campaign to increase our client portfolio and help move us further up the supply chain in the automotive, marine and industrial low carbon vehicle markets.

Want a marketing strategy that really works for your business? Give us a call on 0845 075 5955 or email hello@horizonworks.co.uk.

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