March 09, 2011

Insperity | Laying the Strategic Foundation

The extensive market research conducted among internal and external audiences helped provide critical insight to help drive both brand architecture and brand positioning recommendations.

Addison Whitney worked closely with various business units to understand the existing brands, their key challenges, and how each could support the Administaff corporate brand. Like many B2B companies, a mostly master branded strategy was ideal due to the efficiency and ease of managing one main brand versus many standalone brands.

Once the organization of the corporate brand was clearly outlined, Addison Whitney began developing the Administaff brand positioning. It’s important that a brand positioning be believable and compelling. Looking back at the research, Addison Whitney correlated compelling to attribute importance ratings and believable to attribute performance ratings. The recommended positioning strategy defined Administaff as the trusted advisor who provides business performance solutions to guide clients toward success.

To help the Administaff team communicate the brand positioning to target audience groups, Addison Whitney developed targeted messaging for both clients and prospects. These messaging guidelines will ensure consistency in communication – one of the most critical parts of brand management.

In addition to driving the brand architecture and brand positioning, one more finding came from the market research. With minimal brand awareness among prospects and incorrect brand associations, it became clear that a corporate identity change would set Administaff up for future success. This decision was not taken lightly by the Administaff team. Nearly 25 years of hard work had built the Administaff brand, and it was time to set a new, strong foundation for the next 25 years of success.

Next step…corporate name and tagline.

(Please note: Administaff is now Insperity. You can find them on the web at


  1. David Worrell   March 23, 2011 9:41 am / Reply

    This is an example of the worst (re)branding mistake I have seen in years.

    Administaff was a company that did exactly what its name promised — it helped me administer all the nightmares of having a staff. Insperity is a made-up name that means absolutely nothing… Or worse.

    As the CEO explained, it is a combination of Inspiration and Integrity”… presumably because I do not have any integrity of my own? I have to buy it from them?

    If Insperity had any REAL integrity, they would be willing to call themselves what they really are…. Administaff.

    See my post for more on how they violated the 2 sacred rules of marketing.

  2. Beth Anne   March 25, 2011 12:50 pm / Reply

    Hi David-

    Interestingly, you are one of the few people that actually understood what Insperity’s former name was intended to mean. A good number of prospects believed the company provided temporary staffing. If you read Insperity’s press release you’ll recall that Jay E. Mincks, Insperity executive vice president of sales and marketing, said “Our research indicated there were some misconceptions about the company given the former name, and we felt this change was essential in order to best position our industry-leading services and solutions.”

    In addition, his quote goes on to explain the actual inspiration for the name, “Insperity is a shining new identity that reflects our passion to help companies run better, grow faster and make more money.” The name was developed by using word parts from “inspiration” and “prosperity” and is meant to communicate an end benefit of the Insperity-Client relationship.

    Of course, for confidentiality reasons we cannot talk about all of the inputs that led company leadership to make this decision. But, I can tell you that it was grounded in strong market research – both the decision to rename and name selection itself.

    I took the time to read your blog and wanted to point out one thing: Yahoo! is actually an acronym for “Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle” and the definition of a yahoo is someone who is rude and unsophisticated. The brand position of Yahoo! and all of the work done to build meaning into the name has caused it to mean what you alluded to, that feeling of success after a search.

    We are very excited for the Insperity team (as you can probably tell by our multiple posts) and look forward to seeing how this identity change will help the company grow in the future.

    Thanks for sharing your opinion with us!

    Beth Anne

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