Building a business from the ground up takes a lot of work, but you think you know that already. You’ve heard all the clichés, and you’ve been to at least some of the seminars and webinars for Startups. Maybe you’ve even read a book or five. Well, started reading them at least; the same way people read “A Tale of Two Cities” or “Atlas Shrugged” in college.

But if everyone who started building a business knew everything they needed to know, 8 out of 10 wouldn’t fail. So what gives? Either people are too stupid, too optimistic, or too blinded by their own ambition, right?

Building a Start Up from the Ground Up using PR

Well, trying to shoehorn every failed business venture into those three categories is not only shortsighted, it’s a waste of time. Businesses fail for countless reasons. Though too little money and far too little honest foresight are two of the most common business killers.

But you knew that already. Everyone knows business can be expensive, and likely more expensive than you initially planned. And everyone knows there are things they don’t know. These are tangible, correctable conditions. But what about a third major reason businesses fail? A skill that far too many entrepreneurs take for granted, and according to surveys, a skill that most people overestimate in themselves.

Communication. You hear it all the time from people who can’t seem to shut up: “I’m such a great communicator!” Sure, they can send sounds out into the ether, but they don’t know the first thing about properly connecting with an audience. They might be a great salesperson, but that’s only one aspect of communication, a single medium of communication in a multi-faceted marketplace.

So what, right? When it comes to funding, you can always get more. And you can learn from others in your industry to fill the gaps in your own knowledge base. But what about communication? What do you need to know to knock that out of the park?

There are four key questions that your marketing and PR communication must answer if you want to be successful.

·      How does your product or service make your customers’ lives better?

·      What do you do, specifically, and why should it matter to them?

·      Why are you necessary (or, why are you here when someone else is already doing that)?

·      Where are you in the market, and where do you need to be?

The first question gets right to the core of why people buy. They get stuff because they “want” stuff. Number two clears up potential confusion while helping you get past any objections. Consumers want simple connections, not complex explanations. Think: “I am Groot!” There is power in that simplicity. Number three bulldozes past the “Why do I need that” question by creating a scenario where the customer never even asks that question. They just get your widget because it’s obviously bigger, better, faster, or more. And the final question forces you to consider your market, and determine where and how you should invest in the marketplace.

While these questions should not become the sum total of your marketing communication, they should form the core of your consumer PR approach.