by Kelly Gregorio
You’ve worked long and hard to get your startup going, and now that you’ve made it you want to shout it to the world! But how?
If getting a startup up and running wasn’t hard enough, new entrepreneurs now face the challenge of getting the word out (and making it spread). Read on to discover 3 ways in which you can catch people’s attention and mold a positive perception.
1. Press Release with Purpose
It’s only natural that as your startup launches you will send out a press release. Of course your release is an exciting announcement of your accomplishments, but for the media it is yet another pitch.
Put some power behind your pitch by giving it a little something extra. Promote a free giveaway that you’re offering new customers or an online discussion where you’ll be answering relevant questions to your niche. Do your best to attach it to a theme or a global occurrence (i.e. Halloween, the Olympics) to make your pitch more relevant and buzz worthy.
For the rest of your career you plan to cater to clients’ wants and needs, be sure to do the same when pitching to the media, give them something they can use. Also, don’t forget local bloggers. Not every major media outlet has the time and space for peruse your pitch, but a local blogger that has a related-streamlined audience just might.
2. Host an Event
If you have a budget, throwing yourself a little party is a great way to celebrate your hard work while getting your startup noticed. Keep the event relevant and fun with themed cocktails, food pairings, and perhaps a guest speaker that’s of interest to your target market. Brand a hash tag to coincide with your event for some social media stirs, and keep things light with activities like photo booths and games.
Welcome your local community and send personalized invitations to the people you hope to meet and network with. It’s a good rule of thumb to end an event while people are still having fun. Also, send guests home with a branded gift so that they can keep spreading the buzz long after your event comes to a close.
3. Lend Your Expertise
It should go without saying that a social media army should back up any startup. From Facebook to Twitter, Instagram to vines, showcasing your talents, engaging customers and establishing a positive brand image through these portals continue to prove to pay off. However…
When your startup is in its earliest stages chances are your establish accounts and blog posts will have little to no activity. In addition to these efforts, strive to showcase your expertise on an already established platform. Sites like KillerStartups, Mashable, Venture Beat and Entrepreneur.com encounter thousands of clicks a day and contributing a guest post that links back to your business can get you noticed. When seeking out a potential site, surf where your target audience surfs. Once you find your sweet spot take the time to provide content that is unique, action oriented and fresh… and watch the followers trickle over.
What other ideas do you have for marketing a new startup? Please share them in the comments section below.
Kelly Gregorio writes about topics that affect small businesses while working at Advantage Capital Funds, a company that provides businesses working capital. You can read her daily business blog here.