1. Mine the company’s website and social media channels for information; read the "About Us" tab and look for other relevant information. Check for press releases or a news section. Do the same for the company’s competitors.
2. See if the Better Business Bureau or local Chamber of Commerce has information on them.
3. On the Companies tab of this guide, search for your company in the directories Mergent Intellect and Reference Solutions. Search for larger private companies in PrivCo. NOTE: “Financials for private companies are often reported as ‘estimates.’ The figures may be outdated by a year or more. Use with discretion, and always cite your source.”
4. For Minnesota businesses, check the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Business Filings. For businesses registered with the state, it provides brief information such as address, contact name, and assumed names. For businesses located in other states, check the business section of the state’s Secretary of State website.
5. Even a small private company may be considered newsworthy by the local press. On the News/Articles tab, search local and regional news sources for articles and news stories on the business. You can search for full-text articles in ProQuest US Newsstream, Access World News, Pioneer Press, and BizJournals (which includes the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.) You can also search newspaper websites directly, but they often have a paywall.
6. Perform an Advanced Google Search on your business and limit it to the "PDF" format. Many reports and other documents will be on the web in this format. Be sure to check how current the information is, and evaluate where the information is coming from.
7. Set up a Google Alert on your business or their executive(s) to monitor the media.