Starting A Business? Tips For When To Seek Media CoverageThere's a right time and a wrong time to seek media coverage. Here is some advice on when to............
It always helps if your news can be released at a time when a current news event makes it particularly topical. It’s a win win situation for both you and the media outlet. Here is some advice on when best to seek coverage:
You should send out a request for coverage when you …
This can be the launch of an open beta or a full launch, but probably not both, unless there are major changes to the completed version. Media get a fun new startup to talk about, often taking the novelty or underdog perspective. In return, the startup gets exposure to potential users and investors.
This is more likely to be picked up by media specializing in the startup and finance sectors. And if you’re getting an eight-digit figure, the mainstream media might be keen to pick up the story, too. This is good exposure to future investors, but not necessarily customers. Be careful about sending out investment info before the deal is sealed as it can affect your funding round should your prospective investors see it.
Make a Profit
Many startups receive investments, which is great, but far fewer actually turn a profit, which really spells success in the eyes of the media. You’ve just discovered a business model that puts your books in the black. Don’t be afraid to brag about it to the world. This is often when people start seeing your company as less of a wild card and more of a real market competitor.
Expand to Another Country
Like making a profit, international expansion is another indicator of success. This can be pre- or post-launch of your product or service in another country, but make sure to not backpedal if you go with the former. Remember to target media both in the domestic and foreign market.
Can Offer Expertise
Reporters often need sources to provide background information or context on a story not necessarily related to your startup. Entrepreneurs are often experts on something, and they have more on-the-ground experience than university professors. Even though the story might not directly concern your company, it’ll still likely get a mention and you look like a knowledgeable.
Reach Impressive User Numbers
What counts as impressive depends on your business model. Obviously a B2B business isn’t going by the same scale as B2C, for example, so it’s up to you to make that determination. Nice round numbers with lots of zeroes make for more attractive headlines (e.g. 100,000 is more catchy than 113,000). Savvy media will also know the difference between daily active, monthly active and registered users, so don’t try to pull a fast one. Note that download numbers don’t equate to users. Active user numbers are most important, whereas registered is just a supplementary fact and can even be deprecatory if your active-to-registered ratio is low.
Exit the Market
The company that acquires or merges with you will probably take responsibility for this one, but market exits are always big news, so don’t miss the opportunity. Every good story deserves a good ending. You’ll want to make sure all your users are aware of the upcoming change of hands, and media are more than happy to spread the word.
If you’ve been publicly insulted or somehow screwed over by a government or another company, defend yourself. You can send a response directly to media or post it on your company blog and direct journalists to it. You get to redeem yourself and the media gets a juicy conflict-ridden story. But be warned, both parties will likely fight for the last word.
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Did You Know?Neil is a digital entrepreneur who writes about marketing, strategy and practical methods to help business growth through leveraging the power of the internet. To learn more about the online marketing strategies and systems that he has utilised to create more personal freedom, click the 'Find Out More' button or link below: