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How to build your startup brand

How do you get PR for your startup? If I had a nickel or dime for every time I get asked that question. The truth is, getting PR for your startup is a lot different from getting PR for established firms in many ways, but one of the biggest differences is the need for startups to create compelling stories that give them a voice in an incredibly noisy landscape.

Established firms already have a seat at the table and a voice to tell their stories. Startups must establish that voice by telling stories that break through the noise. This requires creativity, agility, and the ability to combine multiple disciplines to optimize results.

That said, the juice can be worth the squeeze. PR can be a game-changer for startups looking to build credibility, attract customers, and establish a strong presence in their industry. Whether you’re launching a new product, securing funding, or simply aiming to increase brand awareness, effective PR strategies can help you achieve these goals. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to get PR for your startup:

1. Define Your Message and Target Audience

Before embarking on PR efforts, it’s crucial to clearly define your startup’s mission and identify your target audience. Understanding your unique value proposition and who you want to reach will guide all your PR activities.

2. Develop a Compelling Press Kit

A well-crafted press kit is essential for communicating your startup’s story to journalists and media outlets. Include key elements such as:

  • Company background
  • Founders’ bios
  • Product/service details
  • High-resolution images
  • Contact information

3. Build Relationships with Journalists and Media Outlets

Invest time in building relationships with journalists who cover your industry or niche. Follow them on social media, engage with their content, and provide them with valuable insights or content that aligns with their interests.

4. Leverage Press Releases

Craft and distribute press releases for important milestones or news about your startup, such as product launches, partnerships, funding rounds, or awards. Use distribution services or reach out directly to journalists who might be interested in your story.

5. Utilize Social Media Platforms

Maintain active profiles on social media platforms relevant to your audience. Share updates about your startup, engage with your followers and use social media as a tool to amplify your PR efforts.

6. Create Compelling Content

Produce high-quality content (data stories work great!) that showcases your expertise and addresses industry pain points. This could include blog posts, whitepapers, surveys, reports, infographics, or videos that attract attention from journalists and potential customers alike.

7. Engage Influencers and Thought Leaders

Identify influencers and thought leaders in your industry who can help amplify your message to their followers. Build relationships with them and explore collaborations or partnerships that can expand your startup’s reach.

8. Attend Industry Events and Conferences

Participate in relevant industry events, conferences, and trade shows to network with journalists, influencers, and potential customers. These face-to-face interactions can lead to valuable PR opportunities for your startup.

9. Monitor and Respond to Media Coverage

Keep track of media coverage your startup receives – or those that are closely covering relevant angles within your industry, and engage with journalists who write about your company. Respond promptly to inquiries, thank them for coverage, and offer further insights or clarifications when necessary.

10. Measure and Adapt

Use analytics tools to measure the impact of your PR efforts. Track metrics such as website traffic, social media engagement, and media mentions to gauge the effectiveness of your strategies. Adapt your approach based on what works best for your startup.

By consistently and strategically implementing these strategies, startups can effectively build PR and raise awareness among their target audience and industry influencers. Whether you’re a new player or an established startup, leveraging PR can significantly contribute to your growth and success in the competitive business landscape.

Remember, PR is not just about generating buzz—it’s about building meaningful relationships, establishing credibility, and ultimately driving your startup toward its goals. With a well-executed PR strategy, your startup can stand out, attract attention, and achieve long-term success in your industry.

10. Hire an agency to scale these efforts and put their expertise to work: You can certainly set out on your startup PR journey on your own, but often, to scale the practice and evolve the narrative and messaging over time so it’s not a short-lived campaign, you need to bring in the power of experts.

Founded in Boston (‘Beantown’) ten years ago, Beantown Media Ventures (BMV) is a boutique PR and digital marketing agency with the nimbleness to support venture-backed startups and the experience to advise Fortune 500 technology companies on marketing programs that drive action.

Over the last decade, we’ve partnered with hundreds of the world’s most innovative companies to help them elevate and tell their stories in meaningful and impactful ways. With a deep understanding of the technology ecosystem and the unique challenges that CEOs, entrepreneurs, and marketers face today, we leverage our expertise in PR, branded content, and social media marketing to ensure your brand’s story gets heard. All with an eye toward driving leads, accelerating growth, securing investment, and increasing valuations.

To start scaling your startup PR today — reach out to BMV!

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