Although being a stealth startup has its advantages, it also presents certain challenges. Some of them might seem obvious- for example, we have to keep what we’re doing a secret. However, a few of them have led to PR challenges that I hadn’t originally anticipated. Here are the top four public relations challenges I’ve encountered while being in stealth mode:
1. Inexperienced with talking about our product - We haven’t been openly discussing our product, so nobody on the team is used to doing it. We’ve had very few opportunities to practice eloquently describing it to people, whether in a quick “elevator pitch” or in a longer, more detailed conversation. As we prepare for launch it’s going to be important for us to find ways to practice this.
2. Less early buzz - Since we haven’t been able to let people know what we’re doing, we haven’t been able to build as much excitement about our future product, meaning people aren’t eagerly anticipating its release. On the bright side, when we actually do launch we should be able generate a lot of buzz while our product is actually available.
3. Restricted online presence - I have to be hyper aware of the things we say online, specifically on social media. When I tweet, post to Facebook, or write blog posts, I need to be sure that the things Degas shares don’t give too much away about what we’re working on.
4. Lack of promotion - It’s extremely difficult to write great copy for our website when I can’t openly discuss our product. It has been tricky trying to balance keeping our product a secret while still sharing enough about who we are and what our goals are to pique the visitor’s interest.
Despite the challenges that our stealthy status has presented, it’s been fun to maintain an air of mystery. At the end of the day I know that stealth mode or not, our startup’s product is going to have a great launch.