I recently sat down with one of the most beautiful members of #VegasTech, Sarah Evans. She is so good at what she does, that I asked her if she would give the #VegasTech community some tips and advice on PR, Marketing and Tech in general. She graciously agreed…
How did you get started in PR?
I jokingly say I’ve been bringing people together since the tea parties I planned when I was three or four. Seriously though, I think it’s in my blood. I really enjoy bringing awareness to an idea, a cause, a great product… I was doing “PR” long before I knew it was an actual job title.
You have over 90k followers on twitter…how did you get such a following?
By practicing what I preach. 😉 I never recommend anything to a client or employer before testing it out first. I guess you could say it’s four plus years of an ongoing experiment. It’s a lot of sharing knowledge, spending time connecting with others and providing as much value as possible. It doesn’t hurt that I’ve had some amazing media exposure along the way, either.
What brought you out to Vegas?
I’ve always had a dream of becoming a show girl or Blackjack dealer, so…….. Just kidding. I love a challenge and calculated risk taking. When the Tracky team and I decided to make it official, moving to Vegas was part of the deal. We wanted our core team to be in the same place so that we could really make a go of it. I’m a productivity junky and Tracky is so much a part of who I am.
What impresses you most about working with David & Jennifer?
The fact they are husband and wife and still like each other at the end of the day. I love my husband more than anything. Heck, he’s my best friend. Could I work with him? Probably not. “Worlds colliding.” Not only do David and Jennifer work together, they treat one another with so much respect and admiration. It’s really inspiring. They are also two of the hardest workers I’ve come across. Oh, and they also can cook a mean meal. Together. In the kitchen.
What are some of the raddest things you’re doing to help drive users for Tracky?
The sky is the limit in my job. David andJennifer give me free reign to ideate and think big to not just drive users, but build a community of doers! When I get that kind of autonomy, I like to think that big things can happen. We’ve done things like:
- Hijack the hashtag of a well-known competitor’s annual event and launch an infographic pitting us against one another (in a completely fun way);
- Moderating an online event that landed me on the big screen in New York’s Times Square (Can you say bucket list?); and
- Landing some amazing media placements in places like TechCrunch, TechCocktail and SEOmoz (among others)
What have you seen with the VegasTech community that you’ve liked most?
The most? The fact that the word community is used and it really is a community. The startups seem to root for one another, realizing that a success or big win for one means a win for everyone — generating buzz for the big things in store. I also am partial to the #sxVegas movement. Gabe and his team are really putting VegasTech on the national map with the 2013 SXSW. I’m thrilled to be part of it and the fact that Tracky is one of the sponsors doesn’t hurt either. All I know is that this community has a contagious amount of entrepreneurial spirit and I dig it.
What’s the best part of working out of the inNEVation Center?
That it exists. I love what Rob Roy and Switch are doing to show real commitment to entrepreneurs and the state of Nevada. It’s not everyday you have access to so many decision makers in one place. We are really lucky to have such a state-of-the-art facility as our office space. Seriously. Thank you, Rob!
I still can’t believe it! [RE]FRAME: Little Inspirations For A Larger Purpose is really some of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned in the professional world. I published with SlimBooks (a startup, of course) where they say “no to overweight books,” and that is one of the reasons I wanted to publish with them. I also wanted to do something different with this book. I included a socially-sharable image with an inspirational message on each page, along with a 140-characters or less soundbite, perfect for sharing on your favorite social network. It’s my hope that the little lessons learned will resonate with others and help those who need a little professional “boost.” By the way, the book is available in print and e-book (i.e. Kindle, iBooks, etc…) via www.slimbooks.com/reframe.
What are the 3 most important things every startup needs to be doing PR-wise?
Only three? Oh man. You’re tough. Okay, here goes:
- The most successful startups succeed when they break down their PR efforts into a few segments. They’re typically working with smaller teams, so they need to be strategic in how they spend their efforts. Depending on the amount of time and resources, I recommend focusing on: content marketing and engagement, proactive and reactive media opportunities and networking. Of course, there’s much more to PR than those categories, I like to think of PR as what keeps people coming back (as opposed to marketing, which gets people in the door).
- Start building your media, story and pitch list now. Yes, I’m going to pitch Tracky as the tool to use, but you should. We have a fine tuned media relations process that works, in large part, due to how we’re using Tracky. Make a list of 20 people you want to write about you. Work on a unique angle for each. Don’t forget about the human interest stories that make your startup unique. Even if now isn’t the right time to pitch them, document them via photos and text. Archive them for later or for your True Hollywood Story.
- Use HARO and Pitchengine.
Here are few other tips and resources you might be interested in:
- Sarah’s Faves. Shameless promotion? Yes, but I write my blog for my mom. I don’t post anything that’s not easy enough for her to understand, at least that’s my intent. –> How to scale social media for your large brand
- AngelList. Startups: How to Hustle with AngelList in 10 Steps
- ifttt. One of my favorite online automation tools.
- Buffer. My favorite social scheduling tool.