Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

How to tell stories about your startup beyond funding

How to tell stories about your startup beyond funding, and during Covid-19

  • Login to see the comments

How to tell stories about your startup beyond funding

  1. 1. * How to tell stories about your startup post-Series A, beyond, and during Covid-19 (This will be the only graphic in this presentation. Enjoy).
  2. 2. * The good news: You raised a Series A (or more) The bad news: What stories can you tell now?
  3. 3. * Simple answers: Stay relevant to the news Maintain your ‘newsworthiness’: - Be relevant - Be timely - Be novel
  4. 4. * What makes a news story? @mikebutcher
  5. 5. * • Typical startup stories: Worthy but easy / a bit dull: - Client wins - C-suite new hires - Product milestones - Funding events • More interesting & requires creativity: Growth stories! @mikebutcher
  6. 6. * First, you need to think about the long-term cadence of your company’s ‘story’: - The founding - First big customers / Big hires - Evidence of growth - Its relevance to wider issues @mikebutcher
  7. 7. * After funding it’s now about growth & momentum stories - This boosts your recruiting efforts - Gives ‘social’ validation to your company - Keeps investors interested @mikebutcher
  8. 8. * Job one: Create working (and mutually useful) relationships with media @mikebutcher
  9. 9. * To do this you’ve got to keep your media contacts ‘warm’ You want to build helpful relationships which are non-transactional — give and help, don't just take or expect. @mikebutcher
  10. 10. * Journalists ultimately want to build a relationship with CEOs / co/founders So what are some of the best approaches? @mikebutcher
  11. 11. * One way: stay close to the SUBJECTS that interest the journalists & news outlets you want to stay close to. @mikebutcher
  12. 12. * Ways to do that: Follow them on Twitter! Techmeme Read the damn news! RSS! (e.g. Feedly) @mikebutcher
  13. 13. * A note on Twitter: - It rarely hurts to Retweet or Comment on a journo’s tweets - It’s a real-time feed into a reporter’s brain @mikebutcher
  14. 14. * Keeping ‘warm’: - You do not need to always send press releases! - A SHORT, semi-regular note on activity (BUT, don’t over-do it) - And don’t expect a reply @mikebutcher
  15. 15. * E.g. Here’s a what a startup once regularly sent me: Hi folks, Here's the latest snippets of what's happening at XXXXXX. Oh, and join us for a beer! If anything looks interesting and you'd like to find out more, I'm always available on the phone - 075XXXXX - and we like sharing both beer and coffee! This email is going out to a select group of people who've written about us before (there are about 30 on here) - it isn't intended to be spam. If you want to be taken off the list, just say. Happened recently: - <Two sentences> - <Three sentences> Coming up soon: - Fun event to see London's Christmas lights! Next Thursday evening we're etc Thanks! <CEO name> @mikebutcher
  16. 16. * Know your journo: - Be aware: Journos are swamped by incoming - Typical day starts on messages - *Email is read by subject line* - There are 6+ PRs to every journo - COVID = the average day x10 @mikebutcher
  17. 17. * Get your CEO & execs ‘match fit’ for the media @mikebutcher
  18. 18. * Staying ‘warm’: - Keep tabs on the news cycle! - Ensure the CEO is never too busy to comment on stories - Don’t be a bottleneck! - Offer quick email comment on major events *if substantive* @mikebutcher
  19. 19. * - Display your expertise - Back this up with FACTS - Make use of CEO’s personality - CEO personal stories can be compelling e.g. World Remit @mikebutcher
  20. 20. * Other tactics and ideas to use @mikebutcher
  21. 21. * - Be associated with a hot story - If possible, it doesn’t (usually) hurt to be associated with a celebrity @mikebutcher
  22. 22. * - Be creative. Brainstorm ideas for stories in meetings - Anticipate upcoming news - Get AHEAD of events @mikebutcher
  23. 23. * - Be surprising: Attack your competition e.g. Uber/Postmates - Be UNUSUAL: “This startup uproots its entire team and operation for one month, and relocates to a new city.” @mikebutcher
  24. 24. * Get broader with coverage: - Campaigns current in the news e.g. Accessibility / Disability - Politics / Brexit / disinformation - Immigration and talent @mikebutcher
  25. 25. * - Environment / Climate change - WorkFH / Remote office - Education / Skills - Huawei / Move to 5G - EC regulation / GDPR - e-Bikes / city mobility @mikebutcher
  26. 26. * But, caution: If your stance on a controversial issue comes across as inauthentic, it can come off very poorly. E.g. BLM / MeToo / LGBTQ Rights *You MUST offer real substance* @mikebutcher
  27. 27. * Become known for being a key commentator on a key issue or megatrend. e.g. - GreenTech founders should be experts on the environment - Fintech founders expert on the economy @mikebutcher
  28. 28. * ‘Giving back’ stories: - What are YOU doing for your industry that isn’t about you? - What are YOU doing that isn’t just about your own self-interest? @mikebutcher
  29. 29. * CURATE your own stories: E.g. Run an event to discuss a major topic and invite journalists. It might well generate a story?! @mikebutcher
  30. 30. * Stick your neck out: E.g. “Fintech founder says better rules around e-money institutions may have prevented today’s financial crisis” @mikebutcher
  31. 31. * A short note about exclusives / embargoes: - All journos want exclusives! - Your ‘exclusive’ about something minor is dumb - Embargoes are best for major events not tiny ones @mikebutcher
  32. 32. * What media won’t respond to: ● Branch office openings ● So-so appointments ● Minor customer wins ● Overly frequent pitches ● Generic pitches @mikebutcher
  33. 33. * Media will take in interest if: - You have weird, over-the-top spending post-Series A... - You company has a scandal - Executives behave badly - Many other obvious reasons! @mikebutcher
  34. 34. * News in the age of the pandemic @mikebutcher
  35. 35. * COVID-19, the biggest story in 100 years, has almost taken over the media. @mikebutcher
  36. 36. * And there are ALWAYS new angles: Wired: Tech to open theatres BBC: Future of virtual meetings FT: E-scooters are booming TC: VC/Tech hubs post-Covid @mikebutcher
  37. 37. * New outlets have majored on COVID-19 because it’s big, but its also an endless source of news @mikebutcher
  38. 38. * And finally...
  39. 39. * Dealing with rejection: - Ask why the story didn’t work - Don’t burn bridges / be polite - LISTEN to the feedback you get from journalists - Avoid mixing ‘average’ stories with major ones
  40. 40. * The End. Questions?