Make your city irresistible. If you’re trying to build a rising tech community, Anna Mason says, “Think of your city as a startup.”

We were thrilled that Anna, Managing Partner of the Rise of the Rest Seed Fund at Revolution, agreed to be a keynote speaker at our recent Unvalley virtual conference. She talked to us about how rising hubs can capitalize on current tech trends, and we captured these highlights:

Funding dynamics have shifted. More and more capital from the coasts is flowing into Unvalley cities. The happy byproduct of companies raising more funding is that they hire more people and build teams to help execute on the vision they sold to investors. That has created a tech talent gap in many Unvalley cities, but the current trend toward remote work opens up potential talent pools.

Stop the comparison game. Instead of describing your city in comparison to somewhere else (“The Silicon X”), stick the landing on your own unique elevator pitch. You are your community’s brand ambassadors. Know exactly what makes your tech hub special, and flaunt it. 

Use direct-to-consumer strategies. If you think of your city as a startup, this is the time to think about acquiring and retaining customers, like a B2C company would – except in this model, your “customers” are tech workers. Communicate directly with people about how you are attracting opportunity and why your city is great. 

To build a successful tech community, you have to attract the people who are building and innovating as much – if not more – than the companies. 

Want more of Anna’s incredible advice for rising tech hubs? You can get our whole conversation from Unvalley here.