Some of my industry peers are talking online this morning about the significance of the acquisition of Headshift, the social business consulting firm, by Dachis Group, the one year old US based acquisitive social technologies company.
Some facts about this move, as I think it's significant for any consultancies operating under the influence (of social / digital media). Dachis is headed by former CEO and founder of Razorfish. It is a very young company, using a $50m pot of money from Austin Ventures to acquire companies that fulfill on its promise "to unlock the value of social technologies for large corporate enterprises" through design, advisory and technology implementation. The size of the deal as yet has not come out.
Headshift is a very smart firm in my view. I've been impressed with their people and their approach, and they have worked into other parts of their clients' business, not just marketing and communications which is the most common place to see social and digital media work being done.
I see this happening increasingly - consultancies advising parts of the business outside of just the media departments. Naturally media facing departments react to the changing media ecosystem, but businesses want business consultancy too, and it's plain to see that a company's behaviour in these digital times is not just communication. It's customer service, research & development, decision-making, even accounting. It is certainly our experience here at #33 that partly because relatively few people know how to navigate the changing digital landscape intuitively and partly because business disciplines are overlapping increasingly in these social media times.
To go back to my first point, some of my peers are talking about this deal today (here, here and here). 'Social Business' is the moniker being bandied about. I think that to take the word 'consultancy' out of the Headshift tagline removes its true meaning. Social business is not what this is. Business consulting with a deep knowledge of social media is different, it's in high demand and I hope the new Dachis Headshift partnership will continue to prosper in this sector.