WTF is TNW: You think you know, but you have no idea

Casey Neistat at TNW 2016

What’s your story? Startups– and companies in general – must be able to clearly state what they do and why they do it. It’s important, because the way you do this creates your brand’s story.

This story influences your company culture, helps you attract and maintain talent, brings in customers and – if you have a truly great story to tell – helps you get covered by the media.

Knowing your story is one thing, but constantly repeating it is just as crucial. Most people forget that.

Three weeks ago, the day after six new people started at TNW and our headcount grew to 62, Boris and I presented our story at our regular ‘all-hands’ meeting. It was paramount for us to explain why we do what we do and why it works. This wasn’t just for the noobs in the audience – employees of all stages need to be reminded too. It builds loyalty and emphasizes we’re all in this together.

Our story

We enable people and companies to improve the world with tech, by inspiring and connecting Generation T, through media, events, intelligence and spaces.

I use this phrase as my 10 second pitch, but as you can see, it practically begs for more explanation.

At TNW we truly believe that technology helps people and companies make the world a better place. When analyzing the net benefits of technological advancements, we all agree that you end up with a positive result. Taking good and bad things into account, the world today is a better place than it was 20, 50 or 100 years ago; technology is driving this improvement.

We want to enable people and companies to improve the world with tech. And we do this by inspiring and connecting Generation T with the four pillars that make up TNW– media, events, intelligence and spaces.

But WTF is Generation T? Well, the short answer is that you and the company you work at are both part of it (you wouldn’t have made it this far into the article otherwise).

Generation T is a term we coined to describe our target group and is defined as “Any professional, group, or organization utilizing digital technologies in order to engage in business, society and/or politics”.

In case you’re looking for the definition of Generation T, here it is

Generation T is age agnostic, but when breaking it down, Millennials account for around 45 percent and Gen X (age 35 to 55) for around 40 precent of Gen T.

Generation T is mobile, ambitious, progressive and connected. Their need for information, data, talent and (personal) connections is ever increasing. This is where TNW comes in. We serve Gen T by providing a platform (online and offline) to inspire and connect them.

The pillars that form our virtuous cycle

TNW has four pillars to inspire and connect Gen T: media, events, intelligence, and spaces. Together, these four pillars have a positive effect on one another and form a virtuous cycle.

Media: Our media outlet (you know, the one you’re reading right now) covers the entire spectrum of international business, culture and tech news – describing the world through the lens of Generation T. This platform reaches almost 10 million readers every month, driving extra awareness and traffic to our other pillars.

TNW Homepage

Events: We run unparalleled and award winning (best European business event of 2016) events in Amsterdam and New York. The twelfth edition of our Amsterdam event (May 18 and 19) will bring together over 15k professionals per day. It’s centered around providing the setting, atmosphere and tools to have great conversations, conduct business meetings, catch up with friends and clients, and learn, share, inspire, and have fun. It’s the ultimate get-together for Generation T.

We actively connect startups, brands, and investors, and continually disrupt the events space as we keep re-inventing ourselves for each and every edition.

Intelligence: In 2015, a small group of developers within TNW sat down to see if we could build technology that could turn content into data. Using AI, Natural Language Processing and a lot of creativity, dedication, and persistence, we built our ‘Index Engine,’ which is turning content into data as we speak.

The Index Engine tracks over 250k startups from all over the world by turning public data and content into structured data on private tech companies, industries, and locations. This data is enriched with private info on startups, brands and investors. The Index Engine forms the core of data and matchmaking platform Index.co – connecting innovative startups, brands and investors to fuel growth and innovation around the globe.

Unsurprisingly, Index fuels our editorial and events teams with data, story ideas, matchmaking technology, and the ability to track companies over time.

Index company profile page Uber funding

Spaces: On October 13, 2016, the Dutch Prime Minister opened our first TQ location in the heart of Amsterdam. This 65,000 sq ft (6,000m2) building is the home of over 40 curated tech startups, and is the epicenter of the tech ecosystem in the Netherlands. TQ is more than just a space, it’s a label for growth. We help push startups towards exponential growth.

TQ is part of the Google for Entrepreneurs network, giving it direct access to a global network of peers, venues, offices, events, mentors and expertise right off the bat. Furthermore, partners like Booking.com, ABN AMRO and KPMG bring in valuable knowledge, network and services. TQ is home to our HQ, and a myriad of growing Dutch startups including Homerun, 2Care4Kids, Storefront, pr.co, Influentials, TwitterCounter, Autheos, Fashiontrade, Connecterra, Sribbr, Monolith, and many others. It’s also the place where international companies like Stripe and Flexport find a soft landing to the European market.

TQ Amsterdam

The formula

These four pillars work together to fuel each other’s growth, leading to more expansion that is ultimately multiplied by the TNW brand. In simple math, our growth formula looks like this:

growth formula
TNW’s growth formula: (Media + Intelligence + Events + Spaces) * Brand

See what are we getting at?

I hope this gives you insight in what we do here at TNW and why we do it, but also urges you to think about your story and share it with your team and customers.

I also hope we can connect at one of our events or via one of our platforms. Feel free to share this article on Linkedin and connect with me there.

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