Ah, Forbes. Today, the publication that was founded 105 years ago reaches over 150MM readers across its platforms. Is it any wonder then that entrepreneurs, CEOs, and their dogs all want to be featured in Forbes? With the typical reader a C-suite executive, innovative leader, or visionary, getting your company into a Forbes article can lead to new opportunities - lots of them.
The world’s most read business publication is a hard nut to crack, however. What are its editors looking for? Let’s dive into the answer so that you can see how to position your company as being worthy of a Forbes feature and of the attention of its demanding, influential readers.
First, make sure you have your basics covered. That includes an intriguing, well-designed website and thoroughly established presence on your social media platforms. What? You only have a few weeks’ worth of sporadic posts on Facebook? That’s a problem you should solve before approaching Forbes. Take a close look at all of your channels to see if you have implemented a consistent, well-thought out social media strategy that is building your image as a polished company. Remember: it’s better to have one or two platforms that are clicking than four or five that are struggling, so focus on optimizing a few.
And above all else, get rid of any that you don’t use. While there’s something to be said for reserving your name on Tik Tok or some other channel, if you never use it but someone clicks on it, that’s not a good first impression.
Also, it’s worth considering getting some other articles out there about you in cyber space before approaching Forbes. Press releases are good, of course, and if you can get organic media on high-quality platforms, that’s even better. The object is to create the impression of a company in motion, one that is gaining momentum and leading its industry.
Regardless of where it’s published, no story is going to hook your reader if you stay on the surface. Facts are facts, and you do need them. However, if all you do is talk about where you went to school, the steps you took to create a product, and the success you have had, your reader will be asleep by the time they finish the first paragraph.
With Forbes in particular, it’s all about the details, those moments that impacted your company the most and the times when you were sure you were going to fail but somehow managed to keep going. It’s about being vulnerable and letting your reader into the true, inside story of how your company has evolved into the success that it is today.
So many business owners who want to be in Forbes think they must present themselves as polished and perfect. We disagree. Perfection is boring and not possible, anyway. Far more compelling is a good story about the truth of being in business: success may come but not before you have some really big stumbles along the way.
This one is hard, we know. An angle that is new or unusual will get Forbes’ attention. What can help here is our last piece of advice: getting personal. The more you stay on the surface of your company, the more you will sound like every other CEO and founder.
The details are where you are different and where you can find your original angle.
Forbes readers are a pretty worldly bunch. They are very aware of what is happening around the globe both in business and in current events. It is a definite plus if you can tie in your article with a compelling issue that is happening somewhere. This takes a lot of planning, as you must know yourself and your company very well and be on the lookout for developments that are related to you. If you can bring current events into your article, however, it will be that much stronger and more interesting to Forbes.
Your company really may be the biggest thing to hit your industry, but your Forbes article is not the place to say this. Subtlety is important, as the platform’s readers are sophisticated and like to draw their own conclusions about a company and its leader. If you structure your article correctly and include the right details, readers will finish it knowing that you are a big player even though you never directly said it.
This one doesn’t need too much explanation - when is the last time you found an 800-word product description compelling? While it is perfectly fine to bring your product or service into your Forbes article, we recommend letting it be part of a larger human-interest story so that your piece really resonates with readers.
This is all about credibility. While it will take a little extra time, be sure to link to any online sources for your claims. Forbes will appreciate that you did the research, which will make your article a lot stronger.
Never exaggerate or boast. While it’s understandable that you want the world to know just how amazing your company really is, it will quickly turn off your Forbes readers. By contrast, your humility will allow them to really see your accomplishments and appreciate your contributions to the business world, and that, as we say in public relations, will be gold.
Imperium Group is an American public relations and marketing consultancy firm. Founded in 2016, it specializes in guaranteed placements, creating utmost transparency for its clients. Imperium Group generates over 15M impressions a month for its clients. Its team is based out of New York, Dallas, and Los Angeles.
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