You just got the green light to create a public relations program for your startup. There's a lot to do, and you don't have enough time or budget to do it all. Where should you begin?
For some startups doing business in "emerging technologies" sectors—such as Internet of things, blockchain, augmented reality, or virtual reality—creating your PR, content marketing, and social media programs can be challenging.
If you don't have the ability to hire expert PR counsel (either an agency or a consultant), here are some seven basic steps to get acquainted with the influencers who follow your technology space.
1. Build your press and analyst list
Start from scratch: Search Google news with keywords pertaining to your company's technology and your competitors. Every time you read an article that is interesting to your company, jot down the name of journalist who wrote it, the publication that published it, and the names of any research analysts quoted in the article. (Here's a free Google Sheets template to help you keep track of what you find.)
Jumpstart if you need it (and can afford it): Consider software tools from Cision, Iris PR, MuckRack, and TechNews. These tools, available at a range of prices, can help you create a basic list of journalists and analysts; you can refine it as you get more knowledgeable about who covers your industry.
2. Build your influencer list on Twitter
Start from scratch: Create a list of influences within Twitter. When you read a tweet that is relevant to your company, pop the poster's Twitter feed into your influencer list.