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Entrepreneurs
Communication
Strategy for
Communication
Strategy for
#COMM4
ENTREPRENEURS
Cathy Hackl, IE School of Communication
@CathyHackl
www.linkedin.com/in/cathyhackl
#Comm4Entrepreneurs
Let’s Break
the Ice
© Soloviova Liudmyla
About me...
Hi, I’m Cathy ...
Online media platform that provides education and
support to Spanish-speaking female entrepreneurs
in the technology sector.
Your
turn...
A survey of 300 startup CEOs found that startups that engage in PR activities are 30 percent
more successful in getting early funding than those that don’t. Words are more important
than ever.
If you were in
an elevator with
Dave McClure what
would you say?
© peshkova
It’s clear that the communications
needs and priorities of startups
are unique...
© nenadaksic - Fotolia
Startups
are unique
Today there are more than
80 startups that are valued
at $1 billion or more and
that number is expected to
increase. With 100 million
startups opening up each
year and 472 million
entrepreneurs worldwide,
competition to become the
next big thing is brutal.*
*Entrepreneur Magazine and Fortune
So how do startups build a corporate
identity and a communications plan
that builds their brand?
© nenadaksic - Fotolia
They need a communications plan that is aligned
to their business plan for all public-facing
communications. Stop being reactive… be proactive.
Are your communications helping your startup meet
its short- and long-term goals?
© nenadaksic - Fotolia
Communications Success
can help drive sales, acquire market share and even
attract investor interest.
Astudy from Hanken School of Economics in Helsinki titled
Building Coherent Corporate Identity in Startups found that:
- Entrepreneurs find brand building important, but don’t
consider all corporate identity constructs equally important,
with corporate culture and corporate communication being
the most important constructs for them.
© nenadaksic - Fotolia
- Don’t seem to understand that all they do, say and write is
building corporate brand, which would give them more power
to influence and control the brand building process. They are
building their brand and culture without realizing it - not being
strategic.
© nenadaksic - Fotolia
- Entrepreneurs need to learn a better understanding of how to build
strong corporate brand through a coherent corporate identity. This can
help startups be more successful and fail less due to failed branding
attempts. A clear brand strategy is a beneficial investment for startups.
- It’s key for companies with a fast paced life cycle to have rapid and
effective communication as it is logical to have everybody at the
organization conscious of where it is headed and why.
© nenadaksic - Fotolia
Who is who in the startup world...
Internal
Stakeholders
Audiences/
&
External
© faithie
Internal
• Employees
• Co-founders
• Board of directors
Stakeholders
© gustavofrazao
New tools, old rules sobre viejito chino
Employees = Brand Ambassadors
Co-founders
We all know
this story.
Board of Directors
External
Angel Investor
Individual that provides a small amount of money to
an early startup and receives a portion of the profits
when the startup is profitable or is acquired by a
larger company.
© Alistair Cotton
Venture Capitalist
AVC is an institutional investor
who offers money to early-stage,
high-potential, growth startups.
They then own equity (stock) in
the companies they invest in
and help them raise more money
and manage the business.
© cartoonresource
Investors
• Family & friends
• Crowdfunding
Clients & Prospective Clients
© mik38
Media Traditional
Social
© Brian Jackson
New tools,
old rules
While technology has changed,
the basic building blocks of
communications and PR are still
the same.
How to Speak Startup
Accelerator/Incubator: Space where startups are “incubated” through
mentorship, space and sometimes cash.
Bootstrapping: Using own funds or from friends and family.
Deck: aka Pitch deck.
Exit strategy: How will you sell your company and make investors lots of
money.
Freemium: Basic product/app for free then upsell features.
Gamify: Adding gaming layer to web or product that encourages people to
use it and gain rewards. We love games!
*Source: Forbes
How to Speak Startup
Growth Hacking: Marketing technique that focuses on quickly finding scalable
growth through non-traditional and inexpensive tactics.
Iterate: Really just means to try something, do it wrong, tweak and try again.
Lean Startup: Core mission of the lean startup is to prove the business concept
as quickly and cheaply as possible.
Monetize: How will you make money with this service/app/product?
MVP: Minimum viable product, bare-bones version of product required to achieve
proof of concept.
How to Speak Startup
Pivot: Change directions as a company.
Ramen profitable: Profitable enough to cover costs and basic living for folks
working in the startup.
Saas: Software as a Service.
Seed Round: Very early investment.
Sweat equity: Shares of company given for work well done. Recruitment
incentive.
Valuation: What the company is being valued at. This changes.
Unicorn: The $1 billion startup.
Startups need to be
sav·vy
noun
: practical understanding or
knowledge of something
SAVVY
communicators
startups can do to
stand-out in their
crowded spaces
• Listen
• Strategize and plan
• Focus on quality vs. quantity
• Effectively reach audiences
• Tell their story clearly
• Convince/Evangelize
• Use communications to
build brand’s business value
7THINGS
Listen
© Kalim
Strategize & Plan
© Yury Zap
Quality
Requires Strategy
Effectively
REACH
Audiences
Tell your story clearly
People forget facts and figures,
but remember stories and feelings.
Convince
Evangelize© Rawpixel
Use communications to build their
business value
’s
© madpixblue
5. Media.
Articles in influential publications and
mentions in prominent blogs or on TV
shows can drive product sales. If your
new software program got rave reviews
in a major computer magazine, by all
means, include it here. Generating
favorable publicity is one of the
more valuable things you can do
for your business.
© cacaroot
Communicate
One of the key elements for any
startup is how it communicates
and markets itself while not
taking the eye off the main tasks
at hand of running the business.
– Dave McClure
“If I was down to
my last dollar, I
would spend it on
public relations.”
– Bill Gates
Imagine the frustration of the investor who knows
he or she has invested in a great company, but
due to lack of communication, the world may
never know. No great company was ever
conceived and grown in a vacuum. Every
successful company recognizes the vital need
and the tremendous opportunity they afford
themselves when they communicate well.
– Cheryl Conner
Great communications can be the
difference between the rapid
acquisition of customers and fast
growth, or the slow death of
your idea as it is pecked to death
by more agile competition.
– Liam Fay-Fright
Every great leader and
every great company
communicates well.. -
Allan Hall
Real life
Studies
Case
FishBrainis a social network that allows sport fishers to share their
fishing experiences with friends via web and mobile applications.
© Rawpixel
Founded: 2010
Staff: 12
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Latest funding: $2.6 million in
2 rounds from 7 investors
© gdvcom
Hangout with FishBrain
© Rawpixel
© Michael Kvakin
Appthority enables companies to leverage mobility and empower a smarter,
safer, mobile workforce. The Appthority solution automates the scanning and analysis
of mobile apps installed by employees on both personal and company devices.
© DigiClack
Founded: 2011
Staff: 11-50
Location: Silicon Valley
Latest funding: $6.3
million in 1 round from
2 investors
© adrian_ilie825
© thinglass
Researching
Action Planning
Communicating
Evaluating
Let’s try this
● Separate in groups of 4 or 3 people
● I will assign a startup to each group
● Look at how each startup is
communicating
● Present to the class
● Pass the class and make the world a
better place.
© Melpomene
To do...
● What does this startup do?
● How are they communicating with
their audiences?
● Which audiences should they focus
on at this stage in their growth?
● What challenges do they face?
● Recommendations on how they can
better their communications
strategy.
Ready, Set, Go
Any questions?
Let’s connect
Cathy Hackl
@CathyHackl
www.linkedin.com/in/cathyhackl
chackl@faculty.ie.edu
© Marek

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Communication strategy for entrepreneurs - IE Business

  • 2. #COMM4 ENTREPRENEURS Cathy Hackl, IE School of Communication @CathyHackl www.linkedin.com/in/cathyhackl #Comm4Entrepreneurs
  • 3. Let’s Break the Ice © Soloviova Liudmyla
  • 5. Online media platform that provides education and support to Spanish-speaking female entrepreneurs in the technology sector.
  • 7. A survey of 300 startup CEOs found that startups that engage in PR activities are 30 percent more successful in getting early funding than those that don’t. Words are more important than ever.
  • 8. If you were in an elevator with Dave McClure what would you say? © peshkova
  • 9. It’s clear that the communications needs and priorities of startups are unique... © nenadaksic - Fotolia
  • 10. Startups are unique Today there are more than 80 startups that are valued at $1 billion or more and that number is expected to increase. With 100 million startups opening up each year and 472 million entrepreneurs worldwide, competition to become the next big thing is brutal.* *Entrepreneur Magazine and Fortune
  • 11. So how do startups build a corporate identity and a communications plan that builds their brand? © nenadaksic - Fotolia
  • 12. They need a communications plan that is aligned to their business plan for all public-facing communications. Stop being reactive… be proactive. Are your communications helping your startup meet its short- and long-term goals? © nenadaksic - Fotolia
  • 13. Communications Success can help drive sales, acquire market share and even attract investor interest.
  • 14. Astudy from Hanken School of Economics in Helsinki titled Building Coherent Corporate Identity in Startups found that: - Entrepreneurs find brand building important, but don’t consider all corporate identity constructs equally important, with corporate culture and corporate communication being the most important constructs for them. © nenadaksic - Fotolia
  • 15. - Don’t seem to understand that all they do, say and write is building corporate brand, which would give them more power to influence and control the brand building process. They are building their brand and culture without realizing it - not being strategic. © nenadaksic - Fotolia
  • 16. - Entrepreneurs need to learn a better understanding of how to build strong corporate brand through a coherent corporate identity. This can help startups be more successful and fail less due to failed branding attempts. A clear brand strategy is a beneficial investment for startups. - It’s key for companies with a fast paced life cycle to have rapid and effective communication as it is logical to have everybody at the organization conscious of where it is headed and why. © nenadaksic - Fotolia
  • 17. Who is who in the startup world...
  • 19. Internal • Employees • Co-founders • Board of directors Stakeholders © gustavofrazao
  • 20. New tools, old rules sobre viejito chino Employees = Brand Ambassadors
  • 24. Angel Investor Individual that provides a small amount of money to an early startup and receives a portion of the profits when the startup is profitable or is acquired by a larger company. © Alistair Cotton
  • 25. Venture Capitalist AVC is an institutional investor who offers money to early-stage, high-potential, growth startups. They then own equity (stock) in the companies they invest in and help them raise more money and manage the business. © cartoonresource
  • 26. Investors • Family & friends • Crowdfunding
  • 27. Clients & Prospective Clients © mik38
  • 29. New tools, old rules While technology has changed, the basic building blocks of communications and PR are still the same.
  • 30. How to Speak Startup Accelerator/Incubator: Space where startups are “incubated” through mentorship, space and sometimes cash. Bootstrapping: Using own funds or from friends and family. Deck: aka Pitch deck. Exit strategy: How will you sell your company and make investors lots of money. Freemium: Basic product/app for free then upsell features. Gamify: Adding gaming layer to web or product that encourages people to use it and gain rewards. We love games! *Source: Forbes
  • 31. How to Speak Startup Growth Hacking: Marketing technique that focuses on quickly finding scalable growth through non-traditional and inexpensive tactics. Iterate: Really just means to try something, do it wrong, tweak and try again. Lean Startup: Core mission of the lean startup is to prove the business concept as quickly and cheaply as possible. Monetize: How will you make money with this service/app/product? MVP: Minimum viable product, bare-bones version of product required to achieve proof of concept.
  • 32. How to Speak Startup Pivot: Change directions as a company. Ramen profitable: Profitable enough to cover costs and basic living for folks working in the startup. Saas: Software as a Service. Seed Round: Very early investment. Sweat equity: Shares of company given for work well done. Recruitment incentive. Valuation: What the company is being valued at. This changes. Unicorn: The $1 billion startup.
  • 33. Startups need to be sav·vy noun : practical understanding or knowledge of something SAVVY communicators
  • 34. startups can do to stand-out in their crowded spaces • Listen • Strategize and plan • Focus on quality vs. quantity • Effectively reach audiences • Tell their story clearly • Convince/Evangelize • Use communications to build brand’s business value 7THINGS
  • 40. Tell your story clearly
  • 41. People forget facts and figures, but remember stories and feelings.
  • 43. Use communications to build their business value ’s © madpixblue
  • 44.
  • 45. 5. Media. Articles in influential publications and mentions in prominent blogs or on TV shows can drive product sales. If your new software program got rave reviews in a major computer magazine, by all means, include it here. Generating favorable publicity is one of the more valuable things you can do for your business.
  • 47.
  • 48. Communicate One of the key elements for any startup is how it communicates and markets itself while not taking the eye off the main tasks at hand of running the business. – Dave McClure “If I was down to my last dollar, I would spend it on public relations.” – Bill Gates Imagine the frustration of the investor who knows he or she has invested in a great company, but due to lack of communication, the world may never know. No great company was ever conceived and grown in a vacuum. Every successful company recognizes the vital need and the tremendous opportunity they afford themselves when they communicate well. – Cheryl Conner Great communications can be the difference between the rapid acquisition of customers and fast growth, or the slow death of your idea as it is pecked to death by more agile competition. – Liam Fay-Fright Every great leader and every great company communicates well.. - Allan Hall
  • 50. FishBrainis a social network that allows sport fishers to share their fishing experiences with friends via web and mobile applications. © Rawpixel
  • 51. Founded: 2010 Staff: 12 Location: Stockholm, Sweden Latest funding: $2.6 million in 2 rounds from 7 investors © gdvcom
  • 54. Appthority enables companies to leverage mobility and empower a smarter, safer, mobile workforce. The Appthority solution automates the scanning and analysis of mobile apps installed by employees on both personal and company devices. © DigiClack
  • 55. Founded: 2011 Staff: 11-50 Location: Silicon Valley Latest funding: $6.3 million in 1 round from 2 investors © adrian_ilie825
  • 58. Let’s try this ● Separate in groups of 4 or 3 people ● I will assign a startup to each group ● Look at how each startup is communicating ● Present to the class ● Pass the class and make the world a better place. © Melpomene
  • 59. To do... ● What does this startup do? ● How are they communicating with their audiences? ● Which audiences should they focus on at this stage in their growth? ● What challenges do they face? ● Recommendations on how they can better their communications strategy.
  • 61. Any questions? Let’s connect Cathy Hackl @CathyHackl www.linkedin.com/in/cathyhackl chackl@faculty.ie.edu © Marek