When playing a word association game with the term ‘economy’, a few options spring to mind almost immediately – austerity, recession, triple-dip. All pretty negative I’m sure you’ll agree (sorry George). SMEs however, is one word that provides a glimmer of hope. As the back-bone of the British economy, SMEs account for 99 per cent of all the nation’s enterprises today. But these types of business don’t just appear like an army of ants, ready to prop up the economy. They begin as start-ups. And they need the best possible support from the government, its partners, and the private sector. However, it’s been a tough few years, and when banks aren’t eagerly lending and government finance options aren’t functioning in the way intended, something needs to change. It’s for these reasons that we worked with our client Find Invest Grow (FIG), a venture capital firm that invests in start-ups founded by students and recent graduates, to draw up a manifesto and identify key initiatives with the potential to unleash the power of the best young business brains. Recommending 10 changes designed to make investing in British business more attractive, the FIG Manifesto believes in:
- More opportunities to get in and out of early-stage investments;
- Enhanced education for ALL stakeholders on the risks and rewards of start-ups; and,
- A culture enhanced by government policy that celebrates and champions start-up businesses.
A manifesto can be a powerful catalyst for change. However, it can also provide a key means for developing and enhancing a brand. Setting out a clear and practical way forward to put an industry, sector, or even the economy as a whole on course for a better future, will highlight just how well a firm knows the markets in which it operates. Showcasing a company’s thinking in this way creates an edge that others will often fail to match, but only if it is communicated in the right way. In this respect, high-quality content is critical. Quality content hits home with the market and the media. For the press, it provides a point of reference they can work from when shaping their stories. More importantly, it should provide insight on key challenges and suggest viable and pragmatic solutions. Aspectus PR’s campaign based on the FIG Manifesto secured great coverage in the Huffington Post and International Business Times, amongst many others. And, beyond the launch, we have developed ways to re-cast, retell and replay FIG’s insights to ensure that both the Manifesto, and the company, continue to get maximum exposure.