As a third-generation entrepreneur, I’m inspired by the “do-ers.” The people who take an idea or dream and then make it a reality. From my grandparents’ café, to my grandmother’s bridal boutique, to my parents’ watch and jewelry store to the lawn and landscaping business I own with my husband – all entrepreneurial businesses require a strong sense of action.
That strong sense of action makes up the cultural ethos of Saxum, which led Renzi Stone, CEO, to support me in the launch of a new division of Saxum called Lithos (“large stone” in Greek), a dedicated team that currently serves Saxum’s entrepreneurial clients. We’re meeting demand in a market that is growing.
So, let’s say you’re a startup tech company or professional services organization looking to expand into new markets. You need an integrated communications strategy to reach your audiences. But where to start? Here are a few foundational elements any business needs to get off on the right communications foot:
- Solid branding. Naming or re-naming an organization is no easy task. It’s a detailed, creative process that takes time and brainpower – and it’s not cheap – but it’s essential to get it right the first time. Avoid these major naming pitfalls. Further, any name produced by a communications agency should be properly vetted by an intellectual property attorney.
- Claim your space(s). Once you’ve selected and vetted a name, claim it everywhere you can. You’ll need your website URL (and all domains), as well as unique social URLs for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc. Mobile optimization is a must for any website design. We live in a smartphone world!
- Message mapping. Mission, vision and values are standard messaging elements for every business. Don’t skimp here, either. When it comes to a mission statement, be specific and straightforward. Some really well-known brands could use help in this area. Core values like honesty, transparency and safety come standard in any industry. What do you value that sets you apart? Saxum has a distinguishing set of values (bonus – they form an acronym!).
- Expert positioning. It’s that simple. Identify your strengths, and then share them. Don’t make a hard sell – it’s about building name recognition and building trust. Reach out to local media and let them know you’re there to help; better yet, suggest a timely topic that impacts their readership. Build your digital presence and share your knowledge. Keep it authentic, and you’re guaranteed to succeed.
Entrepreneurs mix action with creativity, flexibility and guts. We have that in common. You’ll hear more from Lithos. In the meantime, you can find me out and about – having coffee at Elemental, eating lunch at Café do Brasil or volunteering with Uptown 23rd.