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Portent is Being Acquired

Blink. Rub your eyes. You didn't read wrong. You didn't stare at yesterday's eclipse through defective glasses. It's true.

Portent's in the process of being acquired.

Like an avowed bachelor, I swore I Would Never Sell. Then along came the perfect partner.

Our soon-to-be parent company is called Clearlink. Theyโ€™re a performance marketing company. Which is like calling a Tesla a nice little car.

Clearlink has built the ultimate performance-based marketing engine: They have millions of pages of great content, integrate that content with landing pages and PPC, and then have their own call centers to handle incoming calls without the typical marketing and sales wobbly-baton-hand-off.

In short, they get to own and optimize the whole funnel.

They represent brands like AT&T, State Farm, and Progressive.

Why they want us

Some of Clearlink's big clients want agency services. When the deal's done, we're going to help them provide those services. Which is why this acquisition makes sense on both sides.

This acquisition:

  • Is all about acquiring the Portent team
  • Does not include horrifying rounds of corporate purging
  • Does not require that I sell me and my team's collective soul
  • Gets us together with a great bunch of people
  • Gives us a lot more resources
  • Should wrap up in early September

The team:

  • Will still be the great team you're used to
  • Will keep doing the same work
  • Will grow

I:

  • Will still be here
  • May be speaking at more conferences
  • Will definitely be writing and teaching more

Put it all together, and you can see why I jumped at this opportunity. This isn't your typical acquisition.

I am…

Excited, nervous, thrilled, and philosophical all at once.

Philosophical because, after 22 years, this opens a new chapter for my team and me.

Thrilled to move the team into that new chapter.

Nervous about a very new direction for myself and my team.

But more than anything, I'm excited about what we're going to do together.

And, to repeat: I'm not going anywhere. My hope is to be our version of Bertram Cooper someday, hanging out in my office, offering sage bits of advice and, if I'm lucky, kicking the bucket at 100 years old while watching humanity land on Europa. You'll have to watch Mad Men to get the reference.

See you in the next blog post,

Ian

PS: We'll be slowly morphing Portent's brand, but not for a few months. You can continue to spam me at my address.

CEO & Founder

Ian Lurie is CEO and founder of Portent and the EVP of Marketing Services at Clearlink. He's been a digital marketer since the days of AOL and Compuserve (25 years, if you're counting). He's recorded training for Lynda.com, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Smashing Magazine, and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, Seattle Interactive Conference and ad:Tech. He has published has published several books about business and marketing: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle, The Web Marketing All-In-One Desk Reference for Dummies, and Conversation Marketing. Follow him on Twitter at portentint, and on LinkedIn at LinkedIn.com/in/ianlurie.

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Comments

  1. Thrilled for you and the team Ian! And plenty jealous too — I’ve long been trying to move from the “aspiring entrepreneur” column to the “successful entrepreneur” column (and I know it’s way harder than it looks).
    Hope it’s a wonderful partnership — congrats to Clearlink, too. They’ve chosen very wisely.

    1. It’s funny to hear you say. I consider you the “successful entrepreneur.” ๐Ÿ™‚
      Thanks – I am wildly excited. And I am rarely wildly excited.

  2. I’m happy for you and your team, Ian! I know you’ve worked hard to get where you are, and it’s great to see you reaping more benefits than just an 80 hr work-week! Clearlink won the lottery!

  3. Wow, awesome news Ian. Always had/have a great deal of respect for you on the speaking circuit and as an Entrepreneur. Kudos for landing what seems like a great deal for you and your team. All the best!!

  4. Congratulations on the acquisition for you and the Portent team! Sounds like this may free you up a bit to follow some of your other passions around speaking and mentoring others. Give it a bit of time!

  5. Congrats! As long as you and your team continue to write this brilliant blog or other publications, I’m fine with whatever. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. Don’t be nervous! An important part of this acquisition is that we keep doing what we’re doing. My team will take very good care of you.

  6. Ian, we couldn’t be happier for you. Your post concisely and respectfully covers just about every question anyone might consider when thinking about your exciting news. You are wonderful with words.

  7. Congrats again Ian – I think one key indicator that makes this sound like a good acquisition is the fact that they want you to do more blogging and writing. That is clearly your talent (or one of them) and definitely the way I’d want to spend a lot of my time as well! Look forward to your posts!

  8. We knew you when – and are not one bit surprised at you continued success! When the book is written on your amazing life, Ian, just don’t forget those of us who just might have a story or two!

    1. I’ve told stories of sailing in Lavallette many times. But I know you’ve got stories. I’ll be careful ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Congrats! Hope to get more blogging from you, as you’re probably the funniest writer in digital marketing, for sure.

  10. Congratulations Ian! I know the stress that comes with ownership so hopefully you can relax a bit ๐Ÿ™‚ Sounds like a win win. Best of luck with the completion of the acquisition.

  11. So great for you and the company! What an achievement and a promising partnership. Wins wins are rare these days and it seems like you hit the nail on the head. I always enjoy your voice in this industry and respect everything you’ve accomplished. Looking forward to more amazing content from you in the future!

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