A quality online presence is important for any company, from the local wine store down the street to the B2B marketing firm on another continent. Even a simple, clean landing page with basic contact information legitimizes your business to anyone typing your name into a search box. You (probably) really exist!

The first thing an investor or potential partner will do when they see your name is check you out online.  Decent website? Social media? Any press? All great to have, and suggest your startup is more than a side project. 

More importantly, they want to know you're part of the ecosystem. How plugged in is this company to the market? What kind of network have the founders built? Do they know and leverage the right tools? Do they know how those tools are used by others?

A presence on the right platforms validates you in the eyes of those judging, and ensures your data is being captured not only in a primary private market database, but all those that pull from them. You may not know Mattermark or CB Insights or Pitchbook, but they'll know you, and it's where the investors in New York,  the big brand in Texas and the private equity firm in L.A. look, too. When I see a startup with complete, up to date contributions to these three, I know they're serious about success.

 

Angel List

Started as an online introduction board for startups looking to raise money, Angel List has expanded into recruiting (a great place to post job listings no matter your sector or location) and fundraising. The only feature you need to use is free: creating a page for your company sharing what you do and who you are. I recommend having a personal page as well, as a complement to your LinkedIn profile.

Crunchbase

Like Wikipedia for the startup ecosystem, Techcrunch's database can be edited by anyone but is reviewed by editors before being published. If and when you raise money, make sure your profile is complete with round size and investor details that you're willing to share. If you're mentioned on Techcrunch, any included data is usually linked here, too. 

ProductHunt

Founded in 2014, PH aims to surface the best new products, from software to podcasts, every day. Community members upvote their favorites and interact directly with the founders, developers and designers to ask questions and share feedback. If you're popular here, you're almost guaranteed to get noticed everywhere else.

Published on: Jul 29, 2016