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Where to submit your startup for some coverage (traindom.com)
235 points by peeplaja on Oct 4, 2010 | hide | past | web | favorite | 60 comments

Interesting that HN is missing, I've seen sites launched (not always voluntarily!) by a single posting to HN, and I've seen how much coverage you can get from here when announcing my 'two week' project reocities.com .

That seems like an oversight.

I thought the same. I posted cakesy.com last night and have already received over 10k uniques via HN. Even if it hadn't made it past top 10, it would still be 500+ uniques. Wouldn't compare against 80k hits via TechCrunch but it might end up a better plan if your potential users are hackers.

TechCrunch won't deliver 80k uniques. If you got 10k via HN then that's a lot more than TC has been sending these days.

[as usual, you are both correct and wrong at the same time - seems to be becoming my motto]

HN will generate similar traffic to a techcrunch post, if you look at the raw numbers. The big difference is that the TechCrunch traffic is from a readship of a million, and those who click are genuinely interested in your service, that they just read about.

HN will also give you a pretty large boost of traffic, but more are just interested in checking you as a startup, not as an end-user.

You think end-users read TechCrunch? :/

TC has never delivered anywhere close to 80k uniques for any of the projects I have been involved with.

3-4 years ago (first time I had a project covered by TC) it delivered ~3x more traffic compared to what I see nowadays (probably because the volume of daily posts has skyrocketed over those years).

I'm sure controversial topics (Angelgate, etc) still drive traffic, but if HN is creating 10k uniques for top stories then the "HN effect" is greater than what average TC coverage provides.

Plus, I've seen a lot of early adopters and tastemakers have moved to HN for finding things more on the cutting edge.

As much as I hate to say it, planning an effective HN marketing campaign may end up being more useful than trying to pitch the bloggers...

That's definitely news to me. I was quoting figures from 2007 and 2008 when two of my sites got covered. I was expecting 80k to actually be a conservative figure by now, seeing as how TC has grown.

Which two sites? I've had coverage on TC for 4 times since 2006 and never got anywhere NEAR 80k. Was 80k the total bump or just TC traffic?

Chime.TV & Sched.org. For Chime.TV, we had http://www.reinvigorate.net/ setup with real-time audio feedback. Every time a new user hit the site, my PC made a ding sound. Before the TC post, it made a sound once every few minutes and I would run into my computer room to see which country the visitor was from. It was such an exciting feeling. The minute TC published the post, the computer just went crazy. I think we had 40k or so uniques within the first 3 hours and another 35-45k over the next 12 hours, all from the TC post.

Speaking of which, my colleague had her birthday today and I sent her a Cakesy image. She liked it. Thanks!


Thank you for sharing it. Gives me more encouragement for future projects.

I just posted my project earlier tonight, and got essentially nothing. I'm fairly certain my site is relevant for hackers, so I'm assuming it just got overlooked.

The sites on the list have a pretty low chance of your site getting "overlooked" as easily as it happens on HN on a fairly frequent basis. There are just so many stories submitted here that they can't all possibly be upvoted. The sites listed are blog-like and guarantee your site gets visibility for some amount of time.

Your timing is terrible. Best time to post something on HN is 8:30 eastern time, that way you get the best chance of being noticed. Evening is almost certainly going to miss the majority of the visitors to the site and by morning your post will be gone.

What didn't help is that you posted it as 'self post', so one without a link (those are penalized).

Better to wait until 8:30 tomorrow morning, post it as a linked article and put your explanatory text in the first comment.

Good luck!

Hey, thanks a lot for the feedback. Now I understand why you have 40k karma ;)

I put a lot of work into this site and to have it only get 3 comments and 2 points was kind of a let down, and also kind of confusing.

The karma is mostly because I spend too much time here ;)

Sorry to be a n00b, what is, "What didn't help is that you posted it as 'self post', so one without a link (those are penalized)?"

If you post an article on HN that has text instead of a link (that's the two options you've got, read the 'submit' page, it literally says "Leave url blank to submit a question for discussion. If there is no url, the text (if any) will appear at the top of the comments page. If there is a url, the text will be ignored.") then your post will be ranked differently from the posts that contain just a link to a URL pointing elsewhere.

The 'self' presumably refers to the article being HN only.

To avoid meta-discussion and 'Ask HN' style posts clogging up the new page they are penalized, so they'll typically drop off faster even if they do receive a lot of votes. And if they don't receive a lot of votes then they're gone even faster.

So if you want your 'rate my startup' post to be seen best just post the link, and add any extra info as the first comment in the thread.

Got it, thanks.

What was your site?

Thanks for pointing this out, indeed we did not think of HN at the time, but I'll add it to the list.

That depends on the website. When I posted http://insiderstalk.com on HN it was in the top-10 for like 2 days, received a lot of cool comments, but barely any coverage even on twitter.

Oh yeah, I remember seeing this. How's is going for you? Getting much traffic?

I launched http://www.moreofit.com awhile ago and was on the frontpage for awhile too. Got 4k uniques, which trickled down to 100 in about 24 hours. Since then, I get about 200 uniques a day :(

The Next Web - brad@thenextweb.com

I took you up on the offer. ;-)

As have about 10 other so far.

As an FYI, we're only writing up 1 tonight (AnyNewBooks?) and will sort thru the rest for posting soon.

I really do appreciate the submissions though. Please, keep them coming. I live for this stuff.

Thank you so much for the coverage, Brad.

Link: http://thenextweb.com/apps/2010/10/05/any-new-books-is-a-kil...

Really a killer idea. Love it. We have a few more we'll be covering later, as I said. I'm really impressed with what I've been sent tonight. Nice job, HN folks.

I got picked up by http://www.killerstartups.com/ a few months ago. They have a submission page (though I didn't actually use it)

I actually got about 200+ referrals from them, which was nice. In addition to multiple PR offerings.

I got a nice bit of traffic from killerstartups as well (800some referrals I think). Before submitting there, one should figure out when their busy days are, when they seem to have slow days, etc.; my startup unfortunately got placed into a second page early on for their daily reviews and it stayed there most of that day.

Also, despite their audience, I didn't receive a lot of feedback initially. That took some more time.

Maybe there should be a tag and thread on HN for startups that are launching or looking for alpha/beta users (like the ASK tag).

a general product/feedback/product feedback tag would be useful

The advice that TC won't cover you unless you're much bigger is bad. They'll cover you however small you are as long as you give them something worth writing about.

Does anyone know how long it usually takes to get your startup added to CrunchBase? My submission for Stormpulse has been in pending status since 9/23.

Mine took a couple of days at most, it was more than a year ago though.

Less than a day for me a few weeks back.

It was a couple of days for me too.

My iPhone app just came out. So far I've just been emailing bloggers and advertising on cheap sites. Also, tweeted about it!

What do you guys suggest to market an iPhone app (more specifically, productivity/utility $1.99)? What has worked for you?

I would probably make an website that specifically markets your iPhone app and then send that URL out.

I have that, but where would I send it out? Here it is for reference: http://daytaapp.com/

Nothing even comes close to Lifehacker, assuming your product is a good fit. It should be #1 on every start-up's list.

Can anyone that has submitted their site to Killer Startups quantify the number of solicitations they received from vendors? I ask since I almost submitted my site a couple weeks back but was turned off by these lines in the Killer Startups' Terms of Service:

"You herein consent that The Company will disclose to any third party your name, address, e-mail address or telephone number (you may opt out of this by not submitting your startup), except to the extent necessary or appropriate to comply with applicable laws or in legal proceedings where such information is relevant. The Company reserves the right to offer third party services and products to you based on the preferences that you identify in your registration and at any time thereafter; such offers may be made by the Company or by third parties."

I didn't submit my info on their site. They actually just picked up my site from somewhere else. Looking at my analytics I realized they were the ones responsible for the sudden spike in traffic.

But now that you mention solicitations, I was contacted by three PR companies in that same traffic spike. It appears to be a hot-bed for PR companies scouring for new clients. I just wonder if the site isn't run by one of these companies.

As an owner of a site wanting to get my name and info out there, this part of the ToS doesnt read to bad.

I certainly understand where your displeasure comes from, yet I do feel it needs to be kept in perspective. As in this would not be acceptable on your personal email. But on your generic site email. ( Which should still have a touch of personal, of course for your users! )

As mentioned in many places, if you are using email via google, you could always "+killerstartups" in your email.

I just tested it myself and it worked great. Not with "+killerstartups" just "+test".

I received less than 10 emails from people offering to review my site and/or interview me on their blog/site for prices ranging from $10 to around $50. About a week after my review on killerstartups I stopped getting them.

Most were really generic and irritating. I could tell I was just being spammed. However, a couple were well-written and polite. I emailed them back thanking them and letting them know I'd consider their service in the future and they were very nice about things.

I hand-submitted the site, but never received any third-party msg.

This information is invaluable. This is a great way to attract some traffic / get valuable feedback.

I once posted an early version of one of my sites on the craigslist forum for feedback. The responses were not helpful.

MO.com - Entrepreneur Interviews (from starting to successful). Tell me the most interesting thing about you, your company or about tech/startups in general if you want a better chance/get something posted faster. Email may be down, moving servers but Kevin@MO.com or use my personal contact form: http://ohashi.info/contact

This is a great list. I do write web apps and am working on my 1st "startup" so this will be great.

I would like to expand this, how would one who is opening an online store for example get coverage besides the normal press? I mean yes it is a startup but not, we make everything ourselves, so it's not reselling someone else's stuff, but at the same time doesn't fit the startup mold.

I'm surprised at the size of the list here. Are all these sites legitimate, each with their own audience?

I'm wondering if there are equivalents for iPhone apps (or mobile apps in general).

Edit: Created a new post focusing on my mobile apps question so as not to hijack this thread: http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1757510

This is a good list to get started. I write for MakeUseOf - generally to submit your app there, use submit@makeuseof.com or if you want to send a direct message to me, dave@makeuseof.com.

Your app must at least be in open beta, and must be free or 'freemium'.

ReadWriteWeb (tips@readwriteweb) - email us and we will definitely take a look.

Why isn't there a commonapp for startup press coverage? Same set of details, no PR fluff, and sent to these sites + one designated person at a publication.

This would just make everyone's life so much easier.

http://www.blogreviewed.com/ (In beta - I believe i saw it on HN previously but can't find anything searching now) is an attempt at this. I think the product needs a lot of work - the tips on pitches and the way they evaluate sites all seem to have been done quickly/formulaically. The idea, as you mention is a good one. If they could improve the execution it would be useful. It's not a common app, but it makes pitching a repeatable process in an automated way (in theory).

I don't know if it was random or not, but it seems like they start with really easy (and in often case worthless) targets and then just work you up to say a VentureBeat. We (GroupTabs) had already been covered there, along with a couple other of their suggested pitch spots - so they definitely are not looking at that, which would be a nice feature.

That said I'm not sure a common app would really work. If you want coverage it's more than pitching the right publications, it's pitching the right people there.

Great list, thank you for compiling this for the rest of us

"This week in startup" is missing. I like those guys.

AdWords ?

Maybe never :( it depends

This is generally bad advice. To quote from the PR panel at the Founder Conference a month ago: the last thing a journalist wants to receive in their inbox is a bland e-mail that was obviously blasted to another hundred places.

video at http://blog.fairsoftware.net/2010/08/24/pr2-0-doesnt-work-fo...

Thanks for group-thinking the downvoting... So I guess I need to explain why I said it's bad advice.

First of all, credentials: I have been covered on many of the sites listed including techcrunch, venturebeat, killerstartups, etc... I know first-hand the kind of response each site generates.

Second: I forced journalists from VentureBeat, the San Jose Mercury News and Wired to spend 30 minutes discussing the best approach to get coverage, in public. I linked to that video. If you don't have time to listen to how the press wants you to pitch to them, don't be surprised that nothing is working out for you :-)

Third. The answer is relationship. Build relationships with the various media & influencers. Not by buying them drinks, but by understanding who they are, what they write about, and why. You surely hate spam. They do to. And using such a list of 100 sites to send the same announcement is spam in their book. I thought you should know.

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