Caroline is a French communications & PR expert based in London. She is passionate about helping startups grow and get their voice heard.
She has worked in various industries and has been focusing on technology, especially Fintech, for the past 2 years.
A strong believer that technology can make the world a better place, she also thinks that women should be more represented and heard in the industry and likes to support them.
She delivers workshops to empower startups doing their own PR at an early stage when they usually don't have the budget to contract an agency or a freelancer.
Public Relations for Start-ups: In-house Or Outsourced? - PR on the go, August 2020
“The main advantages of hiring a PR agency are getting results more effectively and save you some time. Time is money! As a startup, the trickiest part of press relations is getting the journalists’ contact details, knowing how to pitch them and getting their attention. A PR agency has already built trusted relationships with journalists and knows what they’re interested in, which helps them pitch relevant publications and be more efficient. Regarding the results, you can put KPIs in place to ensure you get minimum results every month. For example, quoted in 3 top tier publications and get 1 industry profile piece a month.
The main disadvantages of hiring a PR agency are a substantial cost and not ‘owning’ the relationships with journalists. As a startup, you usually have little idea of how much a PR agency costs. Price can range from £1000 to £10,000 for the same service. I’d say the average price for press relations is £1500 for a great freelancer and £4500 for a great agency.
It can also be difficult to know which agency pitches for organic content and which agency pays for coverage in unfaithful ways. I’d say if an agency tells you they can guarantee you coverage in Forbes and the Financial Times, run away! No one can guarantee press coverage unless they’re using illegal ways to get it.
The second disadvantage is not owning the relationships with journalists as every communication you’ll have with them will usually go through the agency. This means you’ll not be directly in touch with journalists and will not be able to stay in touch the day you stop working with the agency. This is why as a startup, you should try to do some in-house PR using free tools like HARO or Qwoted so that you can build and own the relationships with journalists.
At MarketOrders, when we started we didn’t have any budget to allocate to PR and used free tools like HARO, Qwoted and our network (don’t underestimate the power of your network!). After 6 months of work, we got fantastic results:
- Over 100 articles in the press, including The Sun, The Telegraph, City AM, Startups Magazine, Business Cloud, Management Today…
- Over 20 awards nominations.
- Our crowdfunding campaign overfunded at 112%, raising a total of £439,840.
- 95% of the investors heard of us outside of the crowdfunding platform, through press coverage.
Moral of the story? If you can afford it, have someone in-house to manage your PR and hire an agency to get top tier press coverage and high-quality articles, which are harder to get. Building your profile and credibility using free tools on a day to day basis is very rewarding and also makes the agency’s job easier. You can also hire an agency only for a 4–6 month campaign to launch a specific product or service.”24 August 2020
Meet Keep Going-ER: Head of PR & Communications Caroline Hoffmann - Keep Going, July 2020
"I’ve overcome challenges at different stages in my life. I started my career as a professional horse-rider and competed at high level but had to change my career path for financial reasons (horse-riding being very expensive). I pursued my studies in Paris then moved to London to finish my masters and learn English. I didn’t know anyone in London and I had a tough year but worked really hard and ended up at the top of my class.
Once graduated, I started working for a company specialized in project management of token sales (cryptocurrency). This industry was and still is dominated by men like most of the technology and financial industries. I had to learn the specificities of the technology as well as to earn respect from my peers."
I’ve built a great network of fantastic people and have managed to build my profile and to be recognized as an expert in my field, which enables me to help startups with their communications and PR strategies. I have great plans for the future and I hope to inspire and help as many as people as I can.23 July 2020
Trojan Condoms Release Erotic Bread Cookbook in a Bid to Battle Against Lockdown Sales Slump - Medium, May 2020
“In times of crisis, the only way to survive and thrive is to adapt your strategy as soon as you can. You need to be an early adopter of the new trends, to surf on the wave and newsjacking is a good way to do so. The Erotic Bread Cookbook by Trojan Condoms is smartly done!”.
“Using a light tone of voice can really help you increase awareness as people are craving something that makes them smile and are then more likely to share it. If not an increase in short-term sales, this tactic could boost the image of the brand on the long-term, which will have some repercussions on the sales later on. This is why it is important to keep on creating interesting and engaging content, even in difficult times. The rewards might not be immediate, but they will come!”