If you don’t have the funds or someone in-house that can help navigate a budding firm through the murky waters of PR, a strategic communications program might not be a reality. When your brand is already known, it is fairly easy to reach a wide audience even with a generic press release. In the case of a start-up however, the process is more tedious and involves intentional and strategic measures that will eventually yield the desired result, you need to “fake” it till you make it. Here’s how you can do that on a bootstrapped budget. Create a story you can pitch to the press
It is always a good strategy to humanize a corporation and sell your brand through personal stories of the people behind the company. You can tell individual stories of the founders of the company, their motivation, how they intend to do things differently from other big players in the industry and the ultimate goal of impacting lives. You can the chip in the market problems the brand desires to solve and do well to include nuggets that will appeal to the different audiences you want to reach. Put your eggs in one basket
Identify one journalist who you think would be interested in your story and exclusively offer it to them. Read what the reporter has written before to get a feel for their format or style, and consider if your story will excite them (or irritate them). If your launch or news is sizable, others will cover it.
Get your numbers straight
Data, both company and internal, is one of the best assets you can bring to media. Business numbers such as funding, growth statistics, and business impact on customers or consumer traction prove to media outlets that your company is here to stay.
Data insights gleaned from your own business — e.g. usage trends that reflect a larger trend or signal a counterintuitive market shift — are great story angles to take to the media. Rally your network
One of the first things prospects do is check out your website. If you have real people talking about how your company impacted the way they live, work or play, inform your website’s audience about those achievements. Share success stories by consumers and experiences by your employees instead of tailoring your outlook to PR templates. It’s always better to have your story told by someone else. Bring those voices into your conversations with the media, and don’t forget your website. Turn your social network into your promotion network
Your employees and champions have their own social networks. If you can rally support, you can reach quite a following. You just need to create an internal culture that supports this.
Coordinating Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google+ blasts is a great way to create a network effect of awareness when your company comes out of stealth, has a major launch or gets a great media hit that really captures its story.