Putting the right foot forward with investors

The UK is a hot market for tech investment. Following only the US and China in the world tables, even Brexit and the pandemic have not been able to slow its growth with Tech Nation reporting that investment has increased by 160% since 2018.  

Competition for that investment is fierce. In 2020, a new tech business launched every half hour in the UK, with every entrepreneur believing theirs is amongst the worthiest of investors’ time, attention and – more importantly – financing. 

The challenge many startups face is getting not only their brand in front of the people that will propel their business to the next stage of its growth – but doing so in a way that builds the right brand recognition and gets potential investors excited.

Comms must play a central role in any investor relations strategy. It not only helps boost awareness beyond a company’s own network, but third-party endorsement from media outlets helps position you as “worth looking into” in this busy market. And it will only become more important as more companies compete for fund raising and sales.

But how can you use communications to appeal to investors? Here are five steps to get started.

Build your leadership teams’ profiles

A great idea doesn’t necessarily make for a great business. It is down to leadership to translate a great idea into a product or service that genuinely solves a customer problem, to inspire a team to create this solution, and to build a commercial model that enables the company to deliver it. This is why the personal brand of your founder and the leadership team is so important for attracting investors. 

Establish them as a thought leader on the problem their company solves, while offering unique insights into wider industry trends and what it takes to build a successful early-stage business. Executive profiles, contributed articles, and podcasts can all help build a strong personal brand. Also consider who you are putting forward. Investors look for businseses with inclusive leadership teams.

Building an engaged social community around leaders also helps ensure this content gets in front of the right audience. Consistently sharing relevant, thought-provoking content and proactively engaging with others in your industry and the investor community takes a leader from “interesting” to “someone worth connecting with”.  

Demonstrate category ownership

When we bet, we want to bet on a winner. For investors, that means looking at the category a business is operating in, its potential size, and the opportunity to dominate it. Demonstrating category ownership is therefore critical for showing why you are not only the best bet amongst your competitors, but are better than the legacy solutions that your customers are currently turning to. Educate the market on how your new approach puts you into a category of your own – and one that your customers won’t be able to live without. 

You can find out more on how to establish category ownership through comms here.

Highlight your customer & partner relationships

Investors want to know that your vision and solution is building traction in the market – and customer and partner advocacy is the holy grail here. Where you have case studies with success metrics, work them hard. And if you don’t yet have that dream case study, amplify the fantastic relationships that you have with your customers and partners by collaborating on joint narratives for the media, at industry events, and for promotion across both brands’ social channels.

Check out our five steps for elevating customer success stories here.

Build momentum

Investors are buying into a company’s growth trajectory. So, it’s important to show that your business is moving in the right direction and is ready to accelerate further once that investment hits. Create momentum through a strong news pipeline announcing new products and services, senior hires, customers and quarterly results. Combined it shows a brand on a secure trajectory for growth, while the constant buzz helps keep you front of mind.

Don’t forget your website

However they come to hear about you, the first stop for an investor that wants to learn more will be your website. Make sure that your website clearly demonstrates the brand momentum that you are building. Create a Resources Hub where you can post media coverage, publish blogs exploring key trends, and host research that taps into customer pain-points – a one-stop-shop for investors to find out everything you want them to know about you!

Would you like to hear about how comms could help you put your right foot forward with potential investors? Reach out to us at [email protected] to discuss what a bespoke programme could look like for you!  

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