I came across this post today… Great guidance…
For over ten years I’ve been in the unique position of being both a CEO and a journalist in the technology space. My first company produced Silicon Alley Reporter magazine, where I held the dual titles of CEO and Editor. At my second company, Weblogs Inc., I was a blogger and CEO. Today I’m the CEO of Mahalo, and the editor of an email newsletter (Jason’s List–which you’re reading right now!).
Additionally, for over 10 years I’ve been the subject of many stories, including features in the New Yorker and WIRED (twice!), as well as on television programs including Charlie Rose, 60 Minutes, Nightline, CNN, Fox News, Bloomberg and countless others. I’ve gotten more press than any entrepreneur could dream of–certainly more than I deserve–and I’ve never had a public relations firm working for me.
As both subject and writer it feels like I’ve learned a lot about how the PR and the press works–especially in the technology business.
My philosophy of PR is summed up in six words: be amazing, be everywhere, be real.
You don’t need a PR firm, you don’t need an in-house PR person and you don’t need to spend ANY money to get amazing PR. You don’t need to be connected, and you don’t need to be a “name brand.” Today, many bloggers lament how much press folks like Kevin Rose and Robert Scoble get. They say that they get too much attention and that they got this attention too quickly and without earning it.
What’s funny about this is that “A-list” ceWebrities like Scoble and Kevin Rose are overnight successes 10 years in the making. Scoble and Rose have been everywhere for a decade. Me? I’ve been everywhere in this business since 1994 when I was 23 years old in New York City trying to get any meeting I could (for those of you who wouldn’t meet with me back then I totally understand–chances are I wouldn’t have met with me back then).
Things that look like an “overnight success” typically are not.
Now, I could tell you to “be amazing, be everywhere, be real,” drop some buzz words and call it a day. However, that’s not why you’ve invited me into your e-mail box. Nope, based on the feedback you guys have given me since we started this e-mail experiment, I’ve learned that what you really want is honest talk and clear tactics so you can fight the good fight.
Here are my first ten tips on how to do PR for your startup.
1. Be the brand
As the founder of your company you must be in love with your brand and inspired by your brand’s mission if you have any hope of getting press for your product. If you don’t *really* believe in your product on a deep, intrinsic level, it’s going to come across *immediately* to the bloggers and press you’re pitching.
When I started Silicon Alley Reporter in New York City, I had stacks of the magazine with me at ALL TIMES. If you saw me at a party I had 25 copies in my backpack, or 200 on a broken-down luggage cart, and you had one shoved in your face within a minute of meeting me.
Tags: PublicRelations, PR, Jason Calcanis