I recently spoke at an SVASE StartUp University event in San Francisco to discuss PR and how startups can effectively leverage the right strategies, tools and tactics in order to gain visibility at every stage of their growth – without breaking the bank.
Early stage and bootstrapped startups must embrace DIY (Do it Yourself) or outsourced PR as their product reaches advanced alpha in order to build strategic visibility without losing precious time.
It all starts with answering a several important questions:
Who are your customers?
Where do they go for information?
What are they looking for?
Why would they need this product?
How can it help them do something they couldn’t do before and better than anything else out there?
What will be the most compelling things to convince them to give it a shot?
How can you tell your story in a way that matters to the people you’re trying to reach without speaking “at” them?
PR is not an afterthought.
You need PR to help you carry your product or service to the very people who will help your company grow.
Simply relying on features and word of mouth simply isn’t going to cut it. This is a real world and the reality is that customers aren’t looking for you. You have to compete for mindshare. Those companies who don’t proactively tell their story will find themselves missing from the radar screens of their customers while their competition earns their business – regardless of whether or not it’s an inferior solution.
In order to be successful in Public Relations, you need to grasp what it is, what it isn’t, and how it works and why. Otherwise, you’ll never be able to build the right team, determine the best strategies to amplify visibility and gain traction, or have the ability to effectively measure it.
I’ve created an ebook for startups and VCs based on a previous post to help steer them in the right direction on the road to visibility, attention, and resonance. It will go through several revisions in the future, but at the moment, it’s a great place to start.
Table of Contents:
1. Understand what PR is and isn’t.
2. Don’t under value PR.
3. PR is not a switch.
4. Initial and consistent coverage takes time.
5. Get a spokesperson.
6. PR is not the only tool in the shed.
7. PR at the Head, Across Chasms, and in the Long Tail.
8. Engage in social media.
9. Support and reward your PR program.
10. Keep good people.
11. Keep an open line of communication.
12. Establish realistic metrics.
13. Do not launch your company or product at a conference.
14. Do not start contacting people on your own.
15. Breaking News.
16. PR and Social Media Enable a new form of outbound customer service.
17. PR isn’t charity.
18. You’re not the only company with a great story.
Download as a Word Doc.
Download as a PDF.
Connect with me on Twitter, Jaiku, Pownce, Plaxo, or Facebook
Thank you for this most useful toolbox! I will definitely use your advice for our next campaigns and everyday approach of PR.
Nice Ebook Brian! Wondering what your thoughts were on Incremental PR for startups ?
When it comes to PR, many startups need to get a clue…I’m tired of getting new biz calls only to find out the product/service is launching a week and, surprise! we need PR. Thanks for the excellent primer…now required reading for all future start-up clients!
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