Data Tech Startups Need Cutting Edge PR

Data tech startups need to leverage strategies pioneered by crypto PR gurus to generate buzz and excitement about their emerging technology.

December 13, 2017
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Communicating how new technology works can be a challenge. It’s even more challenging if the new tech you’re trying to explain hasn’t been rolled out to the public yet. Imagine trying to explain how your iPhone works to someone in the 1800’s. Impossible, right?

PR Crypto Strategies Offer Exciting Insights to Companies Attempting to Generate Buzz Around Emerging Tech

If you’re a startup looking to generate buzz about your potentially earth-shattering new tech, look no further than the PR crypto space for inspiration. Cryptocurrencies are barely understood by most of the people that invest in them, let alone the general public.

Cryptocurrency (i.e. Bitcoin), at its most basic level, is a digital currency that doesn’t rely on a centralized server to authenticate individual transactions. Instead, a decentralized network of computers maintain a universal ledger that can only be altered by verified, legitimate transactions. Complex encryption and algorithms are used to prevent hacking, duplicate transactions, or manipulation of the records.

In order to hack cryptocurrency, you would need a supercomputer to break apart algorithms in real-time, and inject data into a database that’s held on millions of devices, simultaneously. It just isn’t feasible.

There, nearly 100 words to try and provide a simple definition for cryptocurrency – a definition that relies on some context, thanks to the existing buzz around Bitcoin and other potential uses for blockchain technology.

Engage the Low-Hanging Fruit to Get the Buzz Started

The first step in generating buzz about an emerging technology is getting the people that know the most about it really excited. Why would you try and spend countless hours engaging someone that barely understands how computers work, when you could go straight to the computer lab and recreate your own revenge of the nerds sequel?

Start preaching to the choir – vigorously! Create a small, but vocal tribe of produce evangelists that intimately understand why your technology can help make the world a better place. Charge them with the task of communicating your vision to the people around them.

5 Steps to Create Tech Buzz That Appears Organic

Let their excitement overpower the skepticism of naysayers. Here’s one method for getting the ball rolling:

  1. Identify online forums where tech enthusiasts hang out. Look specifically for ones that have communities that would benefit from your platform.
  2. Start unique threads in each forum. The goal of these threads is to spark a discussion around the problem that your technology solves. Engage with the conversation for a few days, without mentioning your product.
  3. After the threads have gained some traction, introduce your product as a potential solution.
  4. Hold-on tight. This part is tough. The basement dwellers will rip your product to shreds. But you have to fight back. You have to sell them on the concept. If possible, give them a sample or beta access to what you’re working on. Let them engage with the product and provide you with free, potentially valuable feedback.
  5. Now that you have passionate nerds involved discussing your project online, unleash a public site and social media profiles for your project. Provide an off-ramp for the buzz in the forums – bringing them to places on the web that are more visible to the general public.

It’s not always easy to get this process right. But it’s a proven strategy that can work, with a little bit of luck.

Generate Media Coverage from Tech Writers and Publications

The tech industry has really blossomed into its own unique space. Entire publications are dedicated to covering tech news. If they don’t catch-on from the forum storm that you unleash, you can nudge them along.

Reach out to authors that cover topics related to your product. If your tech is so radical that it redefines a category, or creates its own, you’ll need to look for authors that have shown interest in your space in the past. Look through headlines. Find published articles with topics related to the problems your product solves.

Engage those authors in a polite, professional way. I prefer email, because it’s easy to catch their attention with a killer first paragraph, followed by links to the forum posts discussing your project.

The PR crypto methods outlined in this article are really just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many ways to generate buzz about something new. And in the tech space, you get to take advantage of online communities that love new and exciting projects. You just have to be careful about appearing too promotional.

Your tone, in everything you do, needs to be helpful and sympathetic to the people that are struggling with the challenges that your product solves. If you can gain trust from the broader community, you’ll have a shot at wowing them with your product.