There’s definitely a lot of speak about SPACs nowadays. The reliable IPO is still the long-term liquidity goal for many tech startups. CEOs imagine ringing the bell on the flooring of the New York Stock Exchange, or seeing their face sprinkled throughout Nasdaq’s giant video screen in Times Square. Late last month, 5 prominent tech companies filed on the exact same day to go public through standard IPOs, probably gunning to go out before the November election.

There is undoubtedly a lots of functional, regulatory and monetary preparation that goes into a successful going public. One aspect of IPO planning that frequently gets brief shrift, especially at B2B-focused business chasing reasonably specific niche buyer audiences, is branding and communications. As the head of marketing and communications for a big investment firm, I see this all the time. I think business who cut corners here are throwing away substantial equity value.

Basically, a highly public funding event like an IPO is a massive branding opportunity for many business. It’s a free pass for business to tell their stories to a big, global audience and acquire high-level press protection– both at the time of the IPO and in the future, considering that lots of publications (like my previous company, the Wall Street Journal) typically focus on coverage of larger, openly traded companies.

Why do so many companies fall down in this location? I believe a lot of it has to do with the more comprehensive shift towards data-driven, online marketing and far from branding at numerous companies. Because highly technical companies in locations like hybrid-cloud computing or DevSecOps (yes, that’s a thing) often struggle in their early days to get reporters interested in their stories, they never make interactions a concern inside the business. This returns to haunt them when, all of the unexpected, they have actually filed an S-1 and their exec team has zero experience discussing the business’s story in clear, persuasive terms to a general audience.

However smart business can prevent this trap. Here are five methods you can get the most branding bang out of your tech IPO, no matter how arcane your business’s organization is.

Don’t procrastinate

This is honestly the most important indicate take away here. Effective PR and communications around an IPO are an outcome of long-term preparation that starts at least 12 to 18 months before you file your offering document with the SEC. As soon as you believe an IPO is in the offing, take a tough look at both your (1) marketing/communications staffing and (2) your existing digital footprint.

Article curated by RJ Shara from Source. RJ Shara is a Bay Area Radio Host (Radio Jockey) who talks about the startup ecosystem – entrepreneurs, investments, policies and more on her show The Silicon Dreams. The show streams on Radio Zindagi 1170AM on Mondays from 3.30 PM to 4 PM.