Communication for Startups

Published on 14.05.2018 | Translations available in: German

Communication for Startups

Visions serve them as the engine, strategic communication as the fuel. Founders of start-ups are so enthusiastic about their ideas, they could constantly talk about their project. The aim of this is to achieve one thing above all: to successfully introduce their products and services to the market. The question is: are visions sufficient to do so?

Strategic communication is what’s needed. And storytelling. The good, fascinating stories are the ones that create credibility and uniqueness. Those stories that provide an authentic insight – and aren’t only understood by scientists, tech aficionados or investors. Stories that are approachable for all.  A good story creates a lasting memory. That applies for startups and young initiatives as well. They are right to let this technique slip into their communication measures. But before a story is ready to be told, some preparatory work is necessary. The essential facts and information should be carved out carefully in order to be told.


If visions are transferred into simple, comprehensible messages and stories they can become a real game changer. Sharing their visions with the world is of crucial importance for a start-ups success. For one thing, they want to advertise the unique nature of their products and services, then again, they want to tell the story behind products and make the people behind it visible: the visionaries, the founders, the enthusiasts. All those who support the idea. How did they come up with the idea? What makes it so extraordinary? Those are the questions that arouse the target groups interest. In a nutshell: the company’s vision needs to be broken down into comprehensible, meaningful bites.

Milestones for strategic communication

Despite all the euphoria about their visions, start-ups must realize that the world has not been waiting for their idea. They have a long way to go. To meet the expectations as well as define certain milestones to keep everything on track is what’s vital. Unlike an established company, start-ups literally need to start up first. They need to blaze their own trails. Finding investors, build up a team, define communication structures. Milestones can be a useful tool to keep track of things and to communicate the right things at the right time.

Target group oriented communication

But not only timing matters for successful communication. One of the keys is a target group oriented format of the information. A journalist isn’t interested in the same aspects as a computer scientist or the potential user of a product. The message needs to be adapted respectively. Otherwise, the communication efforts simply won’t reach their goal.

Striking contrast in digital times

To make yourself heard in the extensive media landscape is not an easy task. A press conference continues to be a proven way to do so. Personal contact with the target group as well as other multipliers contrasts effectively with the often anonymous, short-lived communication in digital times. Press conferences can contribute to create publicity for start-ups and young initiatives. Even if not all renowned media make an appearance. A large echo throughout the media can give a well thought out idea the required boost to reach the target group and highlight the benefits of the product or the service and ultimately arouse their interest. Note that stories can even be told at press conferences.

«Decoding the mind for humankind»

One example is Mindfire foundation. It was established in 2017 with the aim to unlock and understand the principles of human intelligence, to reproduce it and to position Switzerland at the head of the global race for artificial intelligence (AI). In November 2017, this unique endeavor was presented to the public at a press conference at ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology). The so-called “Mission-1” will take place from June 11th-15th, 2018 in Davos where young, aspiring talents from over 20 nations will encounter leading scientists and AI-experts. Together they will try to understand the principles of human intelligence. This collaborative process aims to systematically work on issues and open questions from different perspectives and specialties. Media professionals are invited to be a part of this ambitious mission. So they can retell the story. 

Aileen Zumstein Communication will give an account of the results of this one-of-a-kind program on this blog as well as on social media. Stay tuned. 

Read more about about Mission-1 on https://mindfire.global 

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