Magnifique Migisha is a digital strategist based in Kigali.
There are a number of technology startups operating in Rwanda that help to promote entrepreneurship and innovation in the country. These tech startups need to embrace public relations (PR) to establish credibility and build trust with their target audience by showcasing their achievements, expertise and contributions to the industry.
Rwanda aspires to be the leading ICT Hub in Africa, exhibiting a culture of innovation, supported by significant investment in research and development (R&D) and undertaken by a highly educated and skilled workforce. It envisions having high usage and awareness of ICTs in society and the ICTs contribute a significant portion of the economy.
Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) constitute 97.8% of the private sector in Rwanda. They are an important vehicle for sustainable economic growth and creating jobs but some new tech SMEs startups are yet to embrace the use of PR to engage their potential customers.
These startups should embrace PR to build credibility and trust with their target audience by showcasing their achievements, expertise, and contributions to the industry. It can as well help them raise awareness about their products or services, which can lead to increased demand and revenue.
Embracing PR can be useful to these startups to establish relationships with key influencers, media outlets, and industry leaders, which can be valuable for building partnerships and expanding their reach.
Embracing PR can help these startups manage their reputation and respond to any negative or inaccurate information that may be circulating about them. Reputation management is an important aspect of PR and refers to the process of monitoring and influencing the perceptions of an organization, brand, or individual in the public eye. This can include managing and responding to negative press, addressing rumors or misinformation, and promoting positive news or achievements.
For tech startups, reputation management is particularly important as they are often operating in a highly competitive and rapidly changing industry. A negative reputation can damage a startup’s ability to attract investment, partners, and customers, while a positive reputation can help it establish credibility and trust.
To manage its reputation, a tech startup may embrace proactive communication to regularly communicate with the media and stakeholders about the startup’s achievements, plans, and goals can help shape perceptions of the company. Online reputation management is also crucial as it helps these startups to gain an online presence, including their website and social media accounts, which can help ensure that accurate and positive information about the company is easily accessible. Overall, effective reputation management can help a tech startup establish and maintain a positive image, which can be critical for its long-term success.
These startups in Rwanda are creating mobile apps for clients in various industries, while others specialize in providing solutions for several sectors including those that use technology to improve agricultural productivity and boost farmer incomes across the country. All their technological solutions should be communicated through their PR efforts to the general public and to their targeted audience.
Most importantly, PR is beneficial for these startups to help them participate in tech events and conferences in order to raise awareness about their business, establish a clear and consistent brand message, and actively communicate their achievements and milestones to the public.