How to get featured in Fast Company all throughout 2020
Written by Angel Mora
Being part of the Internet scheme as users, we give ourselves the luxury of choosing our apps, streaming platforms, and even where to do our grocery shopping without it being a big deal. Surprisingly, it is those facilities that create the perfect environment for simple events to stop the world, go viral, and get published all over the media.
Nevertheless, sites like Fast Company propose a very specific view of our current business and online environment. Fortunately, in 2020 we have access to a wide variety of resources to take the strategy of this news portal as well as the advantage it provides and adapt them to a scenario much closer to our reality.
If you want to learn how to get published in Fast Company or mentioned in one of its list (like the example above) and use its visibility rates in favor of your brand, today I’m sharing Media Coverage’s top ideas and practices for putting a brand in the public’s eye, as well as what mistakes to avoid during this whole process.
With that said, let’s get started!
Informations in a No-bylines policy
Before I start I’d like to give you simple example. Please, answer the following question being as honest as possible.
When you read the word “Tesla”, you think first of:
- A headline or article talking about Elon Musk and his latest technological extravaganza, or-
- An advertisement for a futuristic car?
If you chose “A”, you agree with 34,269,986 million people worldwide following the tycoon on Twitter, compared to only 5 million that the automotive company has. And, if we consider that of that number we can, a good portion of the people who received the information about the brand, at least 19.9 million are daily visitors to Fast Company’s unified profile, it is possible to track the level of exposure to the communication platform.
A large part of the reason why these market leaders generate a furor in social networks and are uncertain about the collective consciousness is, precisely that platforms such as Fast Company allow anyone to access centralized coverage, directly in a user language – which is positively transferred to your target audience and also with Google’s evaluation profiles.
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Fast Company and the Mass media 2.0
Unlike conventional ads – which have been proven to have less and less effect on the population over the years – the opinion that a referential medium like Fast Company has on a brand influences the decisions of consumers who faithfully trust in said information – which wouldn’t be possible to achieve as fast by applying other strategies.
And let me tell you that the recipe works wonders! Tesla is currently valued at $ 88.2 billion, and it is still on the rise. The architects of this are Stephanie Mehta (Editor in Chief) under the tutelage of Chrissie Lamond (Executive Director, Digital Marketing and Strategy) and their particular vision about the online domains, which we can summarize in 3 essential components:
- Urgency: Making the news an adaptable element for regular reading.
- Engagement: Causing a sense of belonging in the audience and for long-term one-on-one engagement.
- Composition: The management and assignment of SEO publication criteria that allow a cohesive profile to be transferred through the text (its distribution in particular).
All these qualities from which your brand will take a great advantage.
The challenges of positioning
Obviously, a phenomenon so typical of globalization had to be exploited by corporations, who usually take a shortcut through sponsored content – an exclusive method for big budgets. Yet, this causes two big problems:
- The saturation of communication platforms due to the excessive release of paid content.
- Loss of brand credibility by the global audience.
Given the circumstances, you may be wondering: How can I build or boost my company’s reputation and set myself apart from the competition without buying press coverage?
The answer comes from PR SEO. This is what makes more than 50% of the traffic obtained by Fast Company come from direct search and has a bounce rate of 68% according to figures from Similar Web.
Receiving organic media coverage from Fast Company
As I suggested earlier, the continuous barrage of offers that get pushed on the Internet has driven consumers towards being able to dismantle in their conscious a good chunk of the advertising messages; meanwhile certified news is vital to society.
Informative content posses up to three more relevance for companies with a digital presence than promotional or even entertainment formats, as online media directs traffic to your main site, increasing visibility not only for the product/service but of the rest of the spaces where they take presence.
Consequently, this means appearing in Fast Company will make you gain not only the attention of potential customers but their trust, positively reshaping the course of your sales.
According to a study by iScribblers, 90% trust organic media coverage when making their purchases online.
Fortunately, Fast Company possesses a long record from its origins as a journal as a credible media. As a matter of fact, its website refrains from participating in disguised-sponsored-content activities, and it’s also backed by critics alongside a powerful community nurtured by Mansueto Ventures (Owner).
The news portal, in fact, is accessible for free; but only if you implement the right tactics. Now, let’s talk about what tricks to use to get your company, association or event to get published there. Trust me, it is much simpler than it seems …
The truth about online reputation
Usually, when I’ve mentioned free methods to get published in Fast Company on public forums, I noticed the post received a suspicious reaction. Of course, someone who carries the digital image of brands for a living, suddenly talking about options at no cost is indeed suspicious. But I invite you to take a closer look at my concept.
Although you don’t necessarily have to invest money to convey a press-coverage strategy focused on getting featured on Fast Company – even if having the support of a professional team will facilitate and speed up the entire process -you do have to spend enough time and effort on it. But don’t worry! You don’t need to be an expert to be perceived as one online by journalists, contributors, and users alike.
Instead, from now on, you should focus on carrying out 5 main tasks:
- Create a media plan combining PR principles, adapting it to the needs of your brand.
- Transforming your brand from a standard offer to a newsworthy event in the style of Fast Company.
- Creating a press release to then contact the most convenient and approachable journalists on the platform’s list.
- Reinforce your strategies through content marketing.
- Build a robust online presence for accessibility.
Step 1. Conquering the media
As it happens with partnerships, there needs to be a motivation behind any collaborative link.
When it comes to getting published in Fast Company, it is not only about providing an exciting exclusive that captures the attention of the reader, but also giving them grounds to justify a later mention or post about it. Because, when your company isn’t relevant to the networks at all, that means it doesn’t exist, and therefore no one will want to talk about it.
You only need to see the organic traffic rate of Fast Company to know the quality level that both your content and your contact messages need to have.
Therefore, a media plan created to help your company receive organic coverage involves a set of actions starting from your Owned Media, with which you can support the subsequent exchange with Fast Company’s journalists. Which brings us to the next point:
Step 2. A newsworthy-type of company
Regardless of the size of your business, the volume of sales, or if you have just launched a new set of products, there is a multitude of ways in which you can earn getting covered by drawing the attention of Fast Company.
Following that line, the main focus should be to opt for a narrative that mirrors its style and tone; so try to make the most of the possibilities within your own corporate information and the role it plays with the outside world.
Keeping it simple, we are going to divide this process into only two stages: involving and projecting.
- Involve: Your brand in the buzz
Let me be clear about one thing: A reputable digital space like Fast Company cares very little (or doesn’t at all) about that amazing thing that happened in the past with your brand or what could happen in the future since they are not there to give you free promotion in general.
Instead, the people in charge want you to give them something fresh that influences their readers right away. This can range from associating your solution to a charitable cause or a useful service depending on the economic moment that the world or the locality in which your business operates is going through.
- Projecting: Add personality to your brand
To a different extent than marketing, providing an identity to your news revolves around the idea of creating a “hook”. That special something that fans the flames of (in a positive way) your potential client-base.
One way to do this is by searching for keywords related to your industry within the news portal, looking out the topics that most generate conversations since those are the ones that will encourage journalists to consider your contact. Hence, the purpose is to inform and launch a call-to-action on a human level.
From there you can build up a story, gathering the data collected so far. Then, start writing your invitation text and the press release.
Step 3. Creating a pitch and contacting journalists
A pitch is your entry letter to request via email or DM the news about your brand to be considered for an article or note. In it, you must “sell” the concept through a simple but powerful text.
In one of my recent articles “Master how to write a press release and obtain the media coverage you need this 2020” I dabbled in-depth about the steps necessary in writing a press release for your pitch (opting for a format that draws the attention and distributes the information in order of value), and I’ve also expanded on how to find platforms and authority figures online (through a search by terms and lists of journalists) that can help you get published in the press.
So this time I want to focus on how to make sure the exchange with Fast Company’s staff gets carried out in the most comfortable route possible. Next, I’ve summoned the most common mistakes for novel marketers and pr professionals into a small list of 4 things that you should avoid if you want to get published. These are:
Don’t bore-out the journalist with your message
Remember, a press release meant for Fast Company must be interesting enough to automatically translate it into one of its articles. For that, dodge falling for advertising clichés of communicating how “wonderful your brand is”, but instead, make clear the importance of that particular event and how your company is involved in it.
It is not always a good time for reaching-out
Your email will always be read and processed as long as it is not sent in the midst of events of global importance that require the entire attention-span and time of journalists. You will find out about this by following the publications made by Fast Company’s official social media account.
Also, note that on Sundays and night hours your emails are more prone to be ignored.
Never try to impose a discourse format
It is a huge mistake trying to control all the details of the publication. The journalists are the ones who know the operation and editorial line of the portal. What you do can control is the tone of the conversation being held to further facilitate the process.
Fast Company is a much more formal means of communication than others with a shorter tradition, so it’s worth taking that into account.
Drop unnecessary terms
Using intricate phrases in your pitch that don’t contribute anything to the core plot, simply underplays your story, making it harder to convey concrete ideas and the overall reading experience. News articles are assimilated as a single block in readers’ minds, be sure to approach that notion correctly.
Step 4. Content is not only the king but the supreme
Google results are the main source of traffic globally, and the same thing applies to sources like Fast Company. During the search stage, users simply search for the answer to a specific question or problem. When we add journalists to the equation, he will be looking for the root of his next story (which should be yours) or supplement it with additional material.
Your role will be to educate and present permanent interaction, planting the seed of future engagement (lead nurturing). In that case, the content must answer said demand and additionally demonstrate that there is a need that can be solved through your offer or company.
If you make planned, conversational posts and bring real value to the table, that will boost the chances of receiving attention from the right people at Fast Company. Consequently, four purposes are fulfilled:
- Attracting users and lead them to make a purchase decision.
- Receiving the approval of the media or journalists you want to reach out to.
- Link your brand to popular search terms.
- Improving your positioning in the results in anticipation of a press release.
The key then for good content planning is to understand your target audience and the medium utterly, that will let you know which are the best channels for establishing contact, as well as what type of companies or additional value is most attractive to them.
Step 5. Diversify your web presence
This is one of the most frequent sections on this blog and the reason is simple: you cannot pretend to become a big brand that covers a larger portion of the market if you don’t have the right resources – and by that I mean platforms.
Besides having a website and one or two social media accounts, be willing to expand toward new horizons or re-boost current spaces, such as your blog.
As a budding entrepreneur just crafting your strategy, you may not have delved into a corporate blog properly yet, or have simply dedicated an individual section of your site to the latest news about your brand without further info.
For either one, I want to give you a concise approach to how your blogging activity should work having a feature on Fast Company as a goal. The general scheme would look like this:
- Installing WordPress: You can download it from wordpress.org for free and add it to your server quickly. It is the most recommended method and there is an infinity of online material that will help you configure it.
- Choose an aesthetic: Go for a straightforward perspective, that is: attractive and responsive. You can choose to hire the services of a designer or follow tutorials and complete a cohesive image for the brand’s corporate identity.
- Add utility: Although the information contained in your blog is the real protagonist, combining forms, integration with social networks, and search engine optimization via plugins is always a plus. That way, not only users will notice your effort, but also Google’s algorithm.
By taking this approach, you are able to rise the activities that will lead you to get published on Fast Company in a very short time, with a meta-objective in mind beyond visibility. Everything will depend on your industry and the size of your company.
Of course, there are easier methods to carry them out, such as reaching out to us here Media Coverage. You can pick one of our basic media plans and we assure you to give your brand exposure all over the media while also getting the brand a highly prized feature on Fast Company for free.