If you’re a founder looking to land some press coverage, listen closely.
At EU-Startups we often get sent around 50+ press releases a day, and publish only 5, so as you can see it’s quite competitive.
To help the dear startups and founders that are keen to get featured in both EU-Startups and other tech publications, we wanted to give you some advice and help you get ahead. For this reason, we have recorded the 5th episode of our Podcast as a guide on how to get press coverage for your startup.
This article serves as a summary of the tips there – for more detailed and complete advice, have a listen to the full podcast 🙂
What do you mean by press coverage?
When we talk about press coverage we mean getting exciting news about your startup published for free in relevant print or online publications.
In case you’re wondering how it works, at EU-Startups, we divide content into 4 categories.
- News: Startup announcements published for free
- Evergreen pieces: Focus on an industry, location, trend, etc. written by our long-term contributors
- Sponsored Content: Paid advertising options for organisations like accelerators, incubators, corporates or event organisers
- Interviews: Conversations with late-stage founders, who we hand-pick based on team size (50+), growth, funding, etc.
We don’t run guest posts at EU-Startups. If you’re a founder, your best bet, therefore, is to send us some exciting news.
What counts as ‘news’?
Before you start creating your press release, it’s important to stop and consider that the story you’re about to write might not actually be considered ‘newsworthy’ by a magazine or newspaper. At EU-Startups we classify news as:
- News: An exciting ‘external announcement’, such as a funding round (minimum €200K), newly made partnerships with well-known corporates, new market launch.
- Not news: Any kind of ‘internal announcement’ like a survey, infographic, report, research, new staff hire, internal target like revenue or number of customers.
An important point to mention here is that the world of tech news moves very fast. If a story has already been published in another publication around 1-2 hours ago, it’s not ‘news’ anymore.
How to write a press release
The podcast includes some more detailed advice, but the main structure should follow this format:
- Short title stating what the ‘news’ is
- Around 3 subtitles in bullet points
- Clear paragraph structure
- Quotes from founders/investors
- Visual materials e.g. engaging and eye-catching team photo, or product photo (with no text)
To adapt to different locations, you can include a quote or reference to the country manager, or specific country expansion.
How to pitch to tech publications
This is the moment when you can catch the attention of the news publication. As we previously mentioned, we receive up to 50+ press releases a day, so due to time constraints we will be filtering through your emails quickly to find the next big story.
- Tech media is competitive, so we often won’t report if the story has already been covered by another publication. Send out the news around 1 week in advance, or offer an exclusive.
- Choose the publications/journalists you reach out to wisely, and craft a personalised email to each one, highlighting if they covered your startup or sector before.
- Send out the news in the morning, rather than the afternoon.
- Think about the story/mission of the startup and the industry status, presenting the news in this context.
- Make yourself stand out by showing numbers (if you’re early stage, focus on growth %), prominent names/stars that are somehow involved, as well as your social impact.
- Try sending the press release yourself as the CEO of your company. Journalists sometimes prefer to talk directly to the source rather than to PR agencies.
- Use unpersonalised openings, like “Dear Editor”.
- Send funding news without announcing the funding amount or investor names.
- Send without the PR or materials already attached.
- Send uneditable PDFs. Editable formats like Word are faster for us to work with.
- Send without clear information about the startup (website, founding date, location).
- Don’t chase or take it personally if the magazine can’t feature your startup, or even reply to your email. In a sea of 50+ press releases every day, it’s not possible to reply to each one, even if the news or startup is interesting.
Who to contact at EU-Startups
You can reach out to me with your story (Charlotte Tucker, Head of Content) at email@example.com. I’ll be looking forward to reading your stories.
For more complete tips on how to get press coverage for your startup, and to hear an ‘inside’ conversation between EU-Startups and a PR agency, tune into the full podcast here.