Pitch, Don’t Spin: How to Create Buzz Around your Start-up

Meet Seattle’s tech media and learn the tricks of the news trade 

Sponsored by:

                                              TM MBA

So your start-up has been in stealth mode for a while, and you’re ready for prime time. Now what? Creating the right buzz in the marketplace around your new venture is essential to attract additional investment, customers, partners, and talent. And it doesn’t have to break the bank either. Come meet Seattle’s tech media, and learn the tricks of the news trade during an insightful moderated panel discussion featuring:

John CookJohn Cook, Co-founder, . John Cook writes about startups, entrepreneurs, mobile technologies, social networking, online commerce, geek culture and many other topics for GeekWire. He has been covering the technology beat in the region for more than a decade, working for the Eastside Journal and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer before co-founding TechFlash.com, the Puget Sound Business Journal’s technology news site, where he worked as executive editor. A native of Wooster, Ohio, he got his start in journalism in high school, with a part-time job compiling obituary and election information for the Akron Beacon Journal, where his mom was a reporter. He graduated from Gettysburg College with a degree in history, earning Phi Beta Kappa recognition and Academic All-American honors in soccer. John’s interests include backpacking, bicycling, running and watching English Premier League soccer. He lives in Seattle with his wife Holly, son Jack and dog Henry.

Mike Davidson  Mike Davidson, Vice President, Social News, and CEO, .  Mike Davidson is founder and CEO of Seattle-based Newsvine, now a wholly-owned subsidiary of msnbc.com. Mike is responsible for both the day-to-day operations of Newsvine.com as well as community integration efforts between Newsvine and MSNBC.  Before co-founding Newsvine, Mike worked as Art Director and Manager of Media Product Development at both ESPN and the Walt Disney Internet Group and studied business at the University of Washington and Oxford University in England. 


Brier DudleyBrier Dudley, Technology Columnist, Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest in a weekly Seattle Times column published on Mondays and a blog appearing throughout the week at . Brier previously covered Microsoft for five years. A third-generation Seattleite, he received a BA in English from Whitman College and studied film production in Italy before starting a career in newspapers. He has won numerous journalism awards and several oyster-eating competitions.


Leslie HelmLeslie Helm, Editor, Helm is a twenty-year veteran of business journalism. He spent seven years with Business Week, first as Tokyo correspondent and later as Boston bureau chief. He worked briefly for the Seattle Post Intelligencer before joining The Los Angeles Times, reporting at various times out of Japan, South Korea, India and the Pacific Northwest. In 2006, he was appointed editor of Washington CEO. He became editor of Seattle Business magazine in 2009 when the publication acquired Washington CEO. Helm has a BA in Political Science and an MA in Asian Studies from the University of California, Berkeley and an MS in Journalism from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

Curt WoodwardCurt Woodward, Senior Editor, .  Curt Woodward is the senior editor in Seattle for Xconomy, an online news source covering the business of innovation in high technology, life sciences, and clean energy through a six-city network of sites across the country.Curt previously worked for The Associated Press for eight years, covering business, government, and politics as a beat reporter — with some sports, agriculture, natural disasters and crime thrown in for good measure.  His longest posting with AP was in Olympia, Wash., covering the statehouse, the governor, statewide political campaigns and public policy. As former president of the state’s Capitol Correspondents Association, Curt also played a central role in rewriting the state’s rules to give reporters for online-only news sources full accreditation to cover the state Legislature for the first time. Curt has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Western Washington University in Bellingham.

Attendees will learn:

  • What makes a newsworthy story: How can your start-up stand out from the pack?
  • Who to pitch and developing relationships with reporters
  • The latest trends and resources in tech news reporting

Event schedule

5:30 – 6:00 pm  Networking

6:00 – 7:00 pm  Panel discussion

7:00 – 8:00 pm  Q&A 

For partnership or sponsorship opportunities: Please contact Fortunato Vega at

Cost: $25

Friday, October 14, 2011 - 12:30am