The use of digital media enables entrepreneurs to develop their startups in strategic manner. However, how entrepreneurs develop their identity through digital media is currently underexplored. Therefore, our focus is on how entrepreneurs describe and reflect on their communication with their audiences over digital media and, in turn, how that shapes their becoming as entrepreneurs. Our empirical data consists of 29 qualitative interviews and close observations in the start-up incubator neudeli at the Bauhaus-University Weimar. Through our analysis we show how the practice of strategic sparring and the practice of brand co-creation facilitate the development towards three alternative identity types, which are “solution-driven”, “purpose-driven” and “lifestyle-driven” identity. Ultimately, our study highlights how media management can be seen as a practice of self through communication over digital media.

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Keywords entrepreneurship, identity formation, identity work, Media management, mediatisation, narratives
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Journal Journal of Media Business Studies
Horst, S, Järventie-Thesleff, R, & Perez-Latre, F.J. (Francisco Javier). (2019). Entrepreneurial identity development through digital media. Journal of Media Business Studies. doi:10.1080/16522354.2019.1689767