Our DNA is demanding. Our need to forge community and emotional connections is hardwired into each of us. Even in the world of startups and investment, more than profit-and-loss statements and zeros and ones, it’s often our emotions first, before logic, that drive decisions from hiring and firing to funding and future business plans.
In our line of work in public and strategic communications, we are privileged to be able to sit front row and see and explore some of the coolest, newest, and most transformative technology out there, from autonomous robots in space to a test that can match cancer patients with the most effective treatment in a matter of a few weeks.
But once you get past the sizzle of newness, what makes the technology truly extraordinary is the promise it holds for improving the way we live, work, play, and interact with our planet. And that is far more a human story than a tech story.
So, as a technology entrepreneur, how do you ensure you are building your brand story for a potential customer, partner, investor or employee in a way that is memorable, and clearly and quickly resonates on a very human level? Here are three ideas to get you started:
Share Your Vision
Write a CEO Credo that tells the story of what motivated you to start your company, what drives you to innovate and press on each day, and how the world (or at least those touched by your technology) will be better when you realize your vision. Here’s an example for inspiration.
Tell Impact Stories
Find actual people whose lives have been changed–or will be–because of your technology. Data is very important and validating, and you will need it. But stories of real people who are healthier, happier, or living better lives because of you– those are the stories that often move investors to write checks and turn prospects into customers. Prioritize this and figure out how to integrate it into your workflow whenever possible.
Share lessons you’ve learned. You’re human and you’re allowed to make mistakes or make adjustments to your course. Be sure to explain how you’re improving and advancing your technology as a result of what you gained through your experiences. By sharing how you learned and grew, you show humility, perseverance, creativity and determination. And you help others learn too.
Once you get comfortable with these strategies, be sure to amplify their impact through your website, social channels, newsletters, relevant presentations, stakeholder conversations and your other communications channels. While the tech that drives your startup’s innovation is a critical underpinning, it’s the drive to somehow improve the human experience that is at the heart of your mission. Find ways to connect with others on this level and you will find them lining up to join you.