How to Write a History of Your Business
The “History” of your business is exactly what the title implies. It is an explanation of where your business came from or how it began. Like the Backgrounder, you can have a fairly complicated history or something simple and easy to read. For an Online Press Center, we recommend a simple format for easy web reading.
Elements that you may consider including in the History:
1. Inspiration that started your business.
2. Major accomplishments during the life of your business.
3. Short biography of the founder of the business.
4. Where you plan to take your business or future plans for your business.
Strategies to write your History:
1. Chronological order.
List events of your business in chronological order. Use important dates throughout the life of your business to highlight your accomplishments.
2. Tell a story.
This is more informal, more fun to write, and probably more interesting to read. Just start at the beginning and explain the inspiration behind your business, what made you choose your particular business, and where you think your business is headed.
3. Chronological order with Humor.
List the events of your business in chronological order with a twist. Use humor or “bloopers” to highlight events. The whole point of the history is to get the press to take up your story and publish it. Using humor makes the History more interesting and more likely that the person reading it will read it through to the end.
4. Highlight the founder of the company.
If your business is based on the name of one person, this is the perfect strategy for your History. A short biography of the founder and then an explanation of how the product or business came into being as a result of the founder.
Although the above Histories are a good place to begin, it is much more helpful to search out Histories that are similar to your own business. The best way to learn how to write in a particular format, is to read several documents in that format.
To find Histories:
1. Go to Yahoo (or any directory you prefer)
2. Find a category where your business would belong.
3. Start clicking on sites.
4. Look for the “about us” or “press kit” sections on those sites.
5. Find “Company History” or “History.”
It can be difficult to find these “about us” sections. They are becoming more popular, but many sites still don’t have them. Many times, you will find that the History is the first page of the Online Press Center.
In your online travels, if you find a particularly good history, or if you decide to write one for your own business, please email the web address to firstname.lastname@example.org It would be neat if we could start a list of examples.