Lately, I’ve been exploring how I can leverage my talents and skills as a communications strategist to help fill a void for women tech founders. There are so many organizations and initiatives popping up, yet the gap in funding and exits remain.
I don’t think there is a shortage of amazing women who are developing innovative technologies to improve our everyday way of life. We’re out here! I think the issue is, no one knows we exist. Maybe no one is looking for us or they don’t know where to find us. Either way, exposure is an obstacle.
I tested this theory with the recent launch of Beauty + Tech — a digital community created for emerging women-led beauty tech ventures to engage, collaborate and shine. The concept was met with a great deal of enthusiasm — about 50 beauty tech startups submitted to be featured on the website and social media in just the first day. Some of the founders had already received national media coverage in top publications yet still struggle to maintain visibility and gain funding.
Interestingly, most of the women who submitted to be featured did not follow the Beauty + Tech social media pages or join the Facebook group because the reality is, there are plenty of affinity groups for every special interest. Instead, their primary focus was publicity.
It also became evident that not only did many of these founders have a difficult time identifying ways to promote their businesses, they struggled to describe their ventures in a compelling way.
Next to the need for funding and mentorship, women tech founders typically need help telling their stories. So, I teamed up with my actual #BFF, a veteran journalist, to broaden the +Tech concept to promote even more high-quality emerging women-led, industry-specific tech ventures.
We are launching with Beauty + Tech, Fitness + Tech, and Moms + Tech. The goal is to spotlight selected ventures on the website, social media and dedicated blogs. In addition, we recently filmed the first few episodes of +Tech TV — a weekly online “living room chat” series that will feature conversations with the best and the baddest emerging founders, influencers and investors.
There is no charge to be featured by +Tech (at this time) but that deal won’t last forever. In the future, there will be a nominal subscription fee.
We are not solving world hunger, we know. But we are definitely helping to level the playing field for women tech founders around the world by giving them another platform to be discovered.
Be sure to follow +Tech on social media and share the stories of other founders as you move along in your journey.
If you have questions or an interest in collaborating, email Ayanna@beautyandtech.co | Connect with Ayanna Smith.