When we’re talking to prospects about our writing or content marketing services, it’s easy to notice patterns. Certain industries tend to have a more obvious need for content than others. We work with a lot of marketing agencies, for example. E-commerce companies need to drive traffic, and content is a key part of making that happen. Large companies sign quickly and pay slowly. Small companies sign slowly but always pay on time.
We spend a lot of time thinking about what makes for a good client or partner to an agency of writers, and we can never shake the feeling that this is something fairly close to what good Venture Capitalists do. They think about trends, they evaluate people’s visions, how they can support that vision–to a profit.
We’ve worked with enough companies in enough industries to know that smart messaging and effective communication are critical to a business’ growth and success, especially early on. We all know it makes sense for VCs to have strong relationships with lawyers, accountants, and experienced executives. Here are 3 reasons why we think every VC should also keep a team of writers in their back pocket.
1. Startups need a strong brand.
Anyone in the business of building businesses knows that a brand is more than a company’s name, or logo, or website. Brand is culture, and now more than ever most prospects’ first encounter with a brand will happen largely within the confines of the written word. When a startup is out there making a case for its existence, you’ll have several people trying to share the same vision, the same message, the same story. It’s equally important when investing in a new company’s brand to focus both on words and on images. VCs should make this the first step in any new investment.
By the way, this is especially important when a company is at the stage when they are taking funding. Think about it like this: the pitch that convinced you and other investors isn’t going to be the same pitch that works for consumers, at least not with an MVP. Your founders are now far too busy to be spending all of their time deconstructing the story they’ve been telling for so long. Some fresh eyes and a writer’s talents can help set the tone for the next step in the company’s lifecycle.
2. More experts at the table means an increased perspective.
When a new company is getting off the ground, it’s a tight balance to walk between growing the team and making the most of your investment. You want to rely on a small, focused group of experts as you’re working to enter the market and generate revenue, but you also want those individuals to focus on their strengths. It simply doesn’t make sense for a startup company to hire a full-time copywriter in house; they’re more likely to hire a Marketing Director-type who can handle everything from product marketing to daily PR and communications efforts. By partnering with an agency of writers-as-content-marketers, you gain a whole team of creative minds who can complement your existing team and bring new ideas to the table.
3. The devil is in the details.
As things pick up–new orders come in, new hires join the team, new challenges arise–it can be really difficult to keep up with every moving piece. We can’t tell you how often we’ve spoken with prospects who tell us that writing (copywriting, webpage writing, blogging, press release writing, anything else) was never really any one person’s job, but something people did whenever they had the chance. Since everyone is a writer, so often nobody is. By working with an agency of dedicated writers from day one, you can guarantee your company doesn’t make this same mistake. Not only will all of your up front branding, messaging, and copywriting needs be met, but as new PR and marketing opportunities arise (or copywriting needs), you retain consistency and expert-level work where other businesses struggle to keep up.