PR is the last thing you want to do last when releasing your digital product.
Going public as a startup means you will be taking on new responsibilities. As you move from the garage to the daylight, your time will shrink drastically because there will be so many people around you wanting to talk to you about your product.
That’s why it’s vital that you deliver on your promise
Remember that the media, customers, and stakeholders will follow your actions. For example, if you declare the premiere of your product on a specific day and fail to deliver it on time, you will instantly appear as someone who can’t be trusted. Consequently, you’ll be risking that your business loses its reputation before you even release your product.
As a result, you might miss the only opportunity you’ll ever have for growth.
I realize that if you’re on the way to launching your product, writing a press release is probably very low on your list of priorities. But that’s a huge mistake. If you think that it’s enough to send a simple product-oriented press release to a random selection of media, you will be only wasting your time.
Excellent PR communication can bring you a massive free audience. But for that to happen, you need to know how to spread the news about your launch properly. That’s where the media plan comes in.
A media plan helps to organize all your communications at the right moment. And you know that timing is critical in the media, don’t you?
What is a media plan?
Your media plan should include the following things: your value, mission, and USP. I talked about these three elements in my previous article (creating public relation materials) in this series on PR for startup founders.
In general, if you define your value, mission, and USP beforehand, you’ll be able to create PR content quickly and efficiently.
Here are the essential steps you need to take to plan a market launch that will kick off your project in grand style and set your startup for success.
Media research — you probably know many things about your target audience at this point. Now you need to learn whether that audience also reads the media publications you picked for your plan. Divide your research into sectors and audience types. Segment your audience and develop a few different styles of press releases to address different targets with a different kind of communications
You can be sure that even the best press release won’t make everyone happy. Since you’re running a startup, many people will be interested in its business aspects such as your business model. However, lifestyle audiences will be more interested in the problem that your product solves. But you need to address audiences that will bring you a maximum ROI. Once you do media research, you’ll know how to choose the best channels to communicate with your customers.
Write a press release — forget about simple advertising and instead build a story that shows how your product solves the problem of your target audience and how you came to be the one to build it. Be creative and demonstrate the benefits of your product interestingly. Include use cases to showcase how your product in action and identify the pain points it addresses.
Establish key operations with the media — if a medium caught your eye and you believe it’s essential for your sector, get in touch with them. For example, if a journalist from that medium wrote about a similar solution before, you can reach out to them directly or to the editorial team and tell them about your idea.
Remember to always let them know that the information may not be published before the date of your launch. You can tell the editorial team that the promotional material you’re delivering will be created for them exclusively. They’re bound to get interested. Every editorial team values original content and wants to be the first one to publish information or news about a brand-new product.
Final check — if you think that your press release is ready, be sure to check it three times throughout the day and have someone else proofread it. Nothing will save you from a colossal fail right at the premiere of your product. The press and journalists won’t forget that and customers might get bored quickly. Create a checklist to control the chaos.
Market launch — the point where you send information to all the journalists and editorial teams you got in touch with. Don’t forget to reserve enough time to answer the questions journalists asked you. Make sure that your team also has time for delivering proper customer service for the requests and questions rolling in.
Good media plan it’s definitely worth your attention because great press can expand your reach significantly. It can also bring you many new customers during the first weeks after the launch, right when your product is still surrounded by the aura of “hot off the press.”
Have you got any questions about creating a media plan and PR materials? Leave us a comment and share your experience to start a conversation about the value of PR to startups.