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How to pitch Harvard Business Review

By Yulia Dianova

Harvard_business_review-221591-editedHarvard Business Review (HBR) is one of the world’s most respectable sources of information about the latest trends, people and practices that are defining the business world. Published monthly, HBR delivers entrepreneurial ideas and insights that help managers strengthen their leadership power. Every issue guides its readers through strategic decision-making processes in the modern world, introduces innovative leaders and offers suggestions on how to motivate employees.

HBR covers stories about strategy, leadership, organizational change, negotiations, operations, innovations, marketing and finance. Busy executives and business leaders, who are the key audience of the magazine, expect not only to stay on top of new developments in management, but also bring innovative changes into the way their businesses operate. The perfect HBR pitch is an authentic story, not published in any format previously before, written by an academic, who pulled a lot of research together to draw conclusions. The research part is the most essential part of the pitch.

Getting your company’s material published in HBR could be your foot in the door to the world’s top business leaders. With so much at stake, what do you have to keep in mind and how do you customize your pitch for this prestigious publication?

  • Write with the magazine’s key audience in mind.
    That would be entrepreneurs and business leaders, for the most part.

  • Choose the most convincing and effective media format for your material.
    Beyond normal articles, HBR publishes graphics, podcasts, videos, slide presentations and just about any other media that might help to share an idea effectively.

  • Write about what readers are interested in.
    HBR focuses on material that gives readers ideas for becoming smarter, more creative and more courageous in their work.

  • Make sure you’re providing content readers will find useful.
    Explain your thinking so that the reader understands how to apply it in a real-life situation.

  • HBR editors expect you to be the expert in the area you are writing about.
    It’s not enough just to know your subject thoroughly. You have to prove it by referring to supporting research and describing relevant examples. Your pitch will benefit from the presence of plenty of interesting data.

  • Be original.
    New ideas in management are rare and precious. If the topic you’re writing about isn’t new, HBR editors will expect to see a unique argument or insight in your material.

  • You will need to capture HBR readers’ interest right away.
    Remember that HBR’s readers are smart, skeptical and busy by nature. Use your best persuasive and easy-to-read writing to get their attention.

A couple of other things to remember when you pitch HBR:

1. The HBR editorial process is more thorough than that of many other publishers. Editors may ask you to do multiple rounds of revisions. Also, HBR retains the final decision rights to headlines in order reach its audiences most effectively.

2. HBR is a source of innovative business information for top business leaders. Providing useful information and advice will help establish you as an expert in your field and connect you with top professionals in key markets.

Axia Public Relations can help you earn positive news coverage for increased brand recognition and customer loyalty. Learn more by downloading our free Learn Media Relations from the Media e-book or contact us today.

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YuliaYulia Dianova is a public relations professional who is skilled in building relationships with target audiences. She provides counsel to organizations that seek PR help to further their growth and reach their goals. Yulia earned a master’s degree in public relations management from University of Maryland University College. She is fluent in Russian and English and is always looking for a new challenge.

Topics: media relations, public relations

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