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October roundup: What does it take to bring technology to market?

By Alexandra Reid

As usual, we covered a lot of ground on our blog last month.

We explored why startups should focus on problems, not platforms, and why they shouldn’t outsource their core competencies. Francis explained why marketing involves much more than just creating a message and delivering that message with the tools of advertising and public relations. Mitch Joel supported that argument by stating that marketing is everything. Leo shared lots of great media relations advice, teaching us how to pitch to busy journalists without becoming a nuisance. Of course, these just scratch the surface of the topics we covered.

In case you missed any, here is a handy roundup of our posts last month, ranked by the enthusiasm of our readers:

October 16: Meet ..duo by Alexandra Reid

October 11: Montreal’s Notman House enters final funding stage by Francis Moran

October 10: Mitch Joel on why marketing is everything by Alexandra Reid

October 15: Social media gaffes: They can happen to anyone by Megan Totka

October 22: The plight of product managing myself by Peter Hanschke

October 24: ‘Put away the cozy image of the little old lady knitting a sweater for the grandkids’ by Alexandra Reid

October 9: Apple versus Samsung – Every patent owner’s dream by David French

October 2: Why I started learning code: a marketer’s perspective by Alexandra Reid

October 4: Marketing is about more than the colour of your new website by Francis Moran

October 23: Pitching to busy media figures in various media environments by Leo Valiquette

October 17: The thin line between being persistent and being a nuisance by Leo Valiquette

October 30: Make sure you’re barking up the right tree by Leo Valiquette

October 18: Canadian angel investors to gather in Halifax next week by Francis Moran

October 31: Pitch perfect: Startups should focus on problems, not platforms by Alexandra Reid

October 25: Communications planning: The principles by Caroline Kealey

October 3: Startups: Do not outsource your core competency by Leo Valiquette

October 29: The allure of building enterprise products by Jesse Rodgers

Image: 10Wallpaper.com

Pitching to busy media figures in various media environments

By Leo Valiquette

Public relations, or, to be more exact, media relations for the purpose of getting a story told through some manner of media outlet, is a process that takes its cue from a basic tenet of marketing – understand who your potential customers are, what they want, and what they need.

Journalists want a good story that they believe is timely and relevant for their readers. But articulating your story to them isn’t always enough for reasons that may have to do with the nature of the medium in question, the constraints of newsroom resources and what else is needed to create a well-rounded and complete piece of coverage.

In my post last week, I mentioned that a strong media launch must always begin with two key activities: The development of the media materials and the development of the media list. As I wrote then, creating that media list is a tedious but altogether necessary grind to ensure that you have identified not only those media who would have an interest in your story, but who also have potential to move your market by virtue of their audience size and makeup.

Assuming that you have done your proper due diligence and caught the harried attention of a journalist or editor who has some interest in your story, circumstances can still conspire against you.

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Never forget your roots

By Leo Valiquette

A couple of weeks back, I expressed my firm belief about the portability of strong writing skills between disciplines, with particular reference to journalists who make the career transition into public relations or marketing. Here’s my promised followup on the importance of not forgetting your roots in the newsroom when it comes to writing copy and placing a story.

(DISCLAIMER: Everything I am about to say stems from the assumption that you are great at what you do. And, frankly, most writers are not, but that’s a subject for another time.)

Strong writing remains at the core of effective public relations and marketing activities and this has become even more apparent with the rise of content marketing. From the ubiquitous and often maligned media release, to blog posts ghost-written for CEOs and thought leadership articles placed with leading trade and industry press, the lessons learned as a journalist remain relevant. In addition to my points below, you might also want to read Alex’s post from a couple of months back, 5 tips content marketers should take from journalists.

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Great articles roundup: Content marketing, rebranding, journalism, social media, and team building

By Alexandra Reid

As a regular feature, we provide our readers with a roundup of some of the best articles we have read in the past week. On the podium this week are MarketingSherpa, Fast Company, MarketingProfs, SocialTimes, and Jeremiah Owyang.

Content marketing: 3 tips from the trenches

Short and sweet, MarketingSherpa provides three content marketing gems in this post.

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You don’t have sources anymore, you have clients

By Leo Valiquette

There’s a quote that I am fond of from journalist and author Gene Fowler, who passed in 1960:

“Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.”

I could only wonder what he would say if he were alive today about making a living from writing. Content is king. It is fresh and original content, as Katie Parsons wrote the other day, which remains the strongest draw to pull in readers. And yet, we live in this contradictory age in which the ability of almost anyone to easily and affordably be a global producer and distributor of content has undermined the definition of what constitutes quality content and fostered a growing disrespect for the time and craftsmanship required to produce it.

Nonetheless, I wholeheartedly believe that a quality writer has a substantial advantage in today’s marketplace by virtue of the fact that their skillset is the basis of a premium service that is highly transferable between disciplines. The classic example is the journalist who jumps the fence into other fields, such as public relations or marketing.

I use this example because I live it. After working for eight years as a business journalist and editor, I made the leap into a PR/marketing role. Here are my lessons learned along the way.

Read More

Recent Comments

  • Francis Moran : I'm so glad to see you warming to this idea, Luc. Not that you were ever one of those mindless critics who automatically opposed the proposal; you were properly skeptical and demanding that it contain more of what folks like you and I believed was necessary for success. Looks like the city is listening.

  • Luc Lalande : Hi Francis, thank you for the steady and keen eye on the development of this important project for the City. I share your view that open spaces in the building’s design will be critical components for encouraging spontaneous interactions between people. Integrating such spaces in the Innovation Complex sends the right signals to the community-at-large and not just the local startup ecosystem: everyone is welcomed! With respect to Patti’s comments about the arts sector, it would be worth bringing back to light that the Hintonburg-Mechanicsville area has emerged as the first Arts District in the City of Ottawa, housing many artist studios, performing arts studios, and media groups. While the 7 Bayview located Innovation Complex may cater to the entrepreneurial set, there is still considerable property on these lands that could, one day, be developed and capitalize on the area’s sizable artistic community. But perhaps the open spaces at the Innovation Complex can be equally accommodating for anyone who embraces creativity and entrepreneurship: artists and innovators alike.

  • How can we foster culture of entrepreneurship? | Waterloo Innovation Summit : [...] Velocity also provides hands-on workshops for anyone at the University to learn about becoming a successful entrepreneur, and awards over $300,000 per year through the Velocity Fund to promising early startups, to help launch their success financially. We keep finding really good problems that are worthy of solving and that we think we’d be good at solving. - Mike Kirkup, Director of Velocity and Student Innovation Waterloo’s Velocity accelerator is 5, and growing fast [...]

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