21st April 2020

Why should HR tech startups choose a specialist PR partner?

Image credit: JeremyRichards

The public relations industry is a saturated one. That gives you, the prospective client, an abundance of choice. Make the right one and you'll achieve positive brand awareness and engagement. Make the wrong one and you'll see little return on your precious spend - or worse still, even damage your company's reputation.

Budgets can be especially tight in the HR tech startup and scaleup scene, making it even more critical for companies to make the right decision first time. Here’s five reasons HR tech companies should go the specialist route when looking for a strategic PR partner:

1. In-depth industry understanding

Specialist PR providers have an in-depth understanding of your industry. At Onboard PR we stay close to both the HR and technology news agendas and we're well versed in both industries' evolving issues and themes. So whether it’s employee engagement or performance management on the HR side, or AI or SaaS on the tech side, we apply our knowledge of these topics to develop stand-out campaigns and position your brand as a leading authority.

2. Established relationships with target media

When it comes to media presence, HR tech companies need to cover off four key bases: national, business, HR and tech. While generalist PR firms are likely to know the mainstream national and business media, they’re unlikely to have established relationships with the HR and tech journalists that you need to get in front of. Ask yourself: Is my current agency delivering the traction I need in HR and technology titles? If your answer is "no", you’re likely to secure more regular - and better quality - coverage with a specialist PR partner.

3. Content that aligns with industry hot topics

It’s important to remember that specialist PR providers have chosen a certain field because they have a passion for that particular space. They swot up on industry trends because they're of genuine interest to them. This provides clients with two significant advantages. Firstly, because specialist PR firms are clued up on key topics, there is minimal ‘learning lag’ compared with generalist providers so results are typically seen more quickly. Secondly - and because niche providers are attuned to what the trade media is looking for - client campaigns are always aligned with 'hot topics', creating maximum coverage and brand benefit.

4. Connections with the analyst community

Analyst relations (AR) is an important part of the communications mix and in our experience, analysts love to take briefings from innovative startups and scaleups. The feedback we get suggests that disruptive HR tech companies provide a breath of fresh air.

To ensure the best outcomes, you’ll need an AR partner that has established relationships with the HR tech analyst community as well as the requisite insight and experience. For example, some analysts focus on the enterprise market. Others focus on SMEs. Some tend to focus on certain areas of the HR mix, others cover it all. These nuances matter. A generalist agency is not the way to go here.

Why not check out Onboard PR's 20 HR tech analysts to follow in 2020, or our 'how-to' blog on preparing for an analyst briefing vs a media interview?

5. PRoven track record

Specialist PRs will have demonstrable experience in building positive profile and engagement for companies in your space. Most importantly, they'll be able to call upon this to develop a brand-building communications strategy for your HR tech startup. Looking to scale into the US? Planning to launch a new product? Diversifying into a new area of the HR mix? Chances are a specialist PR provider has been there and done it - and can leverage their experience and knowledge for your PR gain.

If you'd like to know more about how specialist PR for HR tech could support your aspiring business, please get in touch.

Talk to a specialist PR team that understands your industry.