The simple question a good business-to-business transaction story answers: Why?

A long-standing complaint of mine with business-to-business media is that too often they focus their coverage on the transactions of business rather than leading readers to a deeper understanding of more critical issues related to their industry. Don’t get me wrong: the transactions of an industry are important news and it is a requirement that a serious B2B media company break those stories — who’s buying whom, who’s got what new account, personnel moves, financial deals. It’s just that too often, those become the primary focus of a medium — and there’s lots more news out there than who’s getting fired or bought.

A long time ago, I claimed that I don’t blog about transactions unless I’m personally involved or I am friends with someone involved or I believe some highly-visible party involved in the transaction deserves what’s happening — good or bad.

I was reminded this morning what my problem with most B2B transaction stories when I saw this story from my friends at Folio: magazine called: Why Randall-Reilly Sold to Investcorp.” Nothing earth-shattering in the story, but it attempts to answer to the question I — and I’m sure at least 2 or 3 others — had yesterday when I saw the news about the sale — the question we always have when we get news that seems to be pulled straight from press release. Going past the press release quotes to attempt to answer the question “Why?” is what good B2B media does.