Buyer , Scaleups , Client Stories — 03.08.2021

BIO-key Wins with Unified Digital Presence

Chelsea Douglass, Director of Marketing

In the software industry, evolving and growing is required for success. That’s why BIO-key, an innovative provider of biometric software and hardware solutions for enterprise authentication, eyed an acquisition that could round-out their suite of authentication solutions. In the summer of 2020, publicly-traded BIO-Key acquired privately-held PortalGuard, an established provider of large-scale on-premise and Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS) identity and access management (IAM) solutions. The acquisition meant BIO-key was better able to provide all the authentication services that their business clients may need.


While the acquisition was a major business win for BIO-key, it brought its own set of marketing challenges. Each company had its own set of assets and brands. Kimberly Johnson, BIO-key VP of product marketing, knew that a cohesive brand and singular website were needed to keep customer experiences uniform, but she didn’t want to lose customers from either company. She also didn’t want to leave valuable digital assets behind as the companies merged.

“There was a complete lack of a central identity, which is so important to have in a digital space. We are in an extremely crowded market and it was really important that we have a strong brand presence and identity, even in the visual sense, for people to identify with.”

Johnson led a small team of marketers, and a complete website and brand overhaul was too big of an undertaking for their team alone. She reached out to digital agencies in hopes of finding a partner that could work seamlessly with her team. In an online networking group, someone reached out to her recommending Innovatemap.


Johnson set up a call with Innovatemap. She says there were a number of things that stood out about that first call, most notably that both a product marketer and a product manager were on the call. It was this duality of skill sets and abilities, both on the marketing and product side, that she found most intriguing, as both the software solution and the brand would need an update.

“I could tell the team talking to me understood that messaging and positioning is important. But how your SaaS product looks, feels and performs is also important.”

While working with Innovatemap, Johnson says she enjoyed having a single point-of-contact. Not having to repeat instructions or explain anything twice saved her time. And that came in handy, as Johnson and her internal marketing team took on many tasks during the process, including condensing and rewriting much of the website content.

Both the BIO-key and Innovatemap teams rallied, writing new content, analyzing existing content, designing and transferring URLs, more than 1,000 in total, and working to ensure the BIO-key brand encompassed the same sophistication across all channels for customers at each digital touch.

“The Innovatemap team became part of my team. That’s a promise you hear all the time, but they truly were. I felt like I had five extra team members. Toward the end, I could feel the support and excitement from Innovatemap because we had all worked on it together.”


The new website and brand launch happened on schedule. Johnson says they experienced a smooth transition, with no dips in traffic. In fact, page views, demo requests and “contact us” form submissions increased. She says the fresh, unified, professional look made a noticeable impact in online business, and the analytics proved it.

Software is always changing as user demands evolve, and Johnson knows their product marketing work isn’t done. She plans to continue to optimize the website and digital assets as the company looks to the future with user experience remaining a top priority.

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