When marketing to startup founders and entrepreneurs, social media is one of the easiest ways to find, engage, and connect with this audience. Founders tend to be very vocal about their projects online, and since they’re actively seeking visibility for their companies, they’re not hard to spot.
That said, finding specific founders and entrepreneurs who are most likely to engage back with you and, more importantly, might be interested in the product or service you have to offer, is another task.
In this post, we break down how to find the most active users in this audience, the hashtags they’re tweeting the most, the handles they’re likely to follow, and the content that resonates best.
Common Hashtags and Handles in the Startup Audience
Let’s take a look at the “Entrepreneurs & Tech Startup Founders” audience template in Socedo. The Socedo templates contain some of the most common hashtags and phrases tweeted by each professional audience, the influencer and publication handle they commonly follow, and a selection of bio keywords that often show up in their Twitter and LinkedIn profiles.
The Socedo platform uses these keywords to target the most qualified audience members to engage proactively, and you can also use these insights to inform your organic social content and editorial calendar strategy.
Hashtags to Use
Influencers to Mention
@bfeld – Brad Feld, a venture capitalist at Foundry Group
@ericries – Eric Ries, co-founder of IMVU and creator of the Lean Startup methodology
@davidcohen – David Cohen, founder of Techstars
Brands to Retweet
How to Engage with Startup Founders Online
Once you’ve identified your target audience on social media, engage them by jumping into the conversations they care about the most.
For example, when Apps Without Code was launching their new event to teach entrepreneurs how to launch their app ideas, CMO Dan Treul targeted self-described entrepreneurs, founders, and other aficionados who were Tweeting phrases such as “want to start a company” and “have an app idea.” Using direct messages, he sent interested users a link to the event registration page, and Dan was able to see a steady increase in new signups every day. Learn more about his strategy in the following video.
Your content should resonate with your audience as well. Here are four brands that target startup founders and entrepreneurs that are doing it right.
Techstars makes great use of Twitter’s native video feature – videos under two minutes that play automatically in the feed. Here, they’re using it to promote a nonprofit cause from a mentor in their network, showing the holistic side of the Techstars organization.
Techstars mentor @kimbal is teaching kids about the importance of real food w/ his nonprofit @biggreen. Now you can help & get the chance to win his Tesla Model 3 at the same time! It only takes a $10 donation to make a big difference. ENTER at https://t.co/g3h8408LAO pic.twitter.com/W3l68tLXNG
— techstars (@techstars)
Everyone loves quotes. In fact, we’ve found that images containing quotes are one of the highest engagement post types on Twitter, right after the video. Don’t overthink it. Y Combinator posts excerpts once in a while in a simple format.
YC Partner @harris on Big Deals – https://t.co/flFAEN6nHz pic.twitter.com/G3ydLSqTRF
— Y Combinator (@ycombinator) March 1, 2018
Aspiring entrepreneurs love two things more than anyone else: success stories and feeling the pain of others. In between content and promotional offers, Apps Without Code fills their social feeds with inspiring, and often humorous, anecdotes of successful founders.
Just in case you’re thinking about giving up today.
Jeff Bezos, 1999 pic.twitter.com/kVJIKLU6Ja
— Apps Without Code (@appswithoutcode) February 16, 2018
Embedded podcasts are easy to overlook when scrolling through the feed because they lack visuals. Foundersuite overcomes this problem by tagging as many as handles as reasonably makes sense in each post, in order to encourage shares, as well as show up more often in search results.
Check out the “How I Raised It” interview with @MatthewGunnin CEO of @EsportsOneInc funded by @XSeedCapital @eniacvc @quakecap @playlabsmit. Data analytics platform for the emerging eSports market. On iTunes: https://t.co/dyXhuwAXPH or SoundCloud: https://t.co/plwX1xt9sZ
— Foundersuite (@Foundersuite) February 27, 2018
Building and engaging with an entrepreneur audience on social media is an effective way to reach potential leads. You can see more results from the Entrepreneurs & Tech Startup Founders template or explore social media keywords yourself with our Keyword Suggestions tool in a free trial of Socedo.