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Want Press for Your Business? Do It for the Right Reasons. Don't make this common mistake.

By Jason Feifer

This story appears in the March 2017 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

David Rinella

As we wrapped up this issue, I received an unusually personal note from a woman in Chicago. She and her boyfriend had overcome great setbacks; now she wants to help him build a restaurant, but they're struggling. She hoped I'd run a story about them. "I felt I needed to reach out," she explained, "because I worry at times that he may not be discovered or ever have a chance to fulfill his dream."

Related: Here Is How to Impress the Press

I told her I sympathized but that her timing was wrong. I'd run a story only about what happens next, when they achieve their goals and can inspire others. Entrepreneur is full of problem-solving stories, which means a problem must have been solved. But frankly, I told her, a story today would do her no good anyway. "When you look to get press, you need to have a purpose," I wrote. "And personal validation is not a good purpose."

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