Many people ask me how is it that I have gotten so much press with in such a short time of being in business. Literally one year ago I had nothing. No published articles. Never been a guest on a podcast. No website. No business. Nothing.
25 Tips to Getting Articles Published
Below I share with you how I went from never publishing one on-line article in my life to becoming a regular contributor with Huffington Post and Thrive Magazine.
Being published in two glossy magazines, being interviewed on podcasts (including one of the most popular podcasts today, EO Fire). And now, instead of seeking press, I’m finding some press is seeking me.
Here are 25 tips to getting articles published in major publications:
1. Start writing.
And by writing I don’t mean start pitching articles all over the place, I simply mean start writing. Notice what are you writing about. The length. How long does it take you to write an article of 1,000 words?
Can you tell your general business message and easily reshape it into other articles, without sounding the exact same in each one? Does writing come easily to you? Do you enjoy it? Start there.
2. See if you can write an article that is “good enough”.
I noticed in the past that I would invest lots of time and energy trying to create the PERFECT article. But, the thing is, I’ve learned it doesn’t need to be perfect. Most of articles that you read in on-line magazines are “good enough”.
They include the content and quality the magazine requires, but they certainly aren’t thesis quality by any means. Don’t make yourself crazy.
3. Start asking your ideal client what they read.
Which podcasts do they listen to? On-line magazines? Glossy magazines? If you know where your ideal clients is hanging out, this can actually be a fun thread to start in a Facebook group!
(I recently asked in one of the mothering groups I am in, which podcasts they listen to. It was not only eye-opening to me, it was fun to watch the engagement I created!)
You certainly don’t want to waste your time writing/pitching articles that won’t reach your ideal client.
4. Check out where your competitors are publishing articles.
You may be surprised to learn of magazines that you’ve never heard of before.
(Recently, I saw a competitor of mine publish an article in a magazine I had never heard of. Then, I wrote an article, pitched it, and not only was my article accepted, I got paid for it!)
5. Choose 2-3 of those magazines and start reading them (if you don’t already).
Get a feel for the magazine. What kind of articles do they publish? What is the length? Who is writing them? Does it feel like your article would add value and fit nicely with their platform? If yes, head over to the submissions page and learn their rules.
Every magazine has different requirements, from length, structure, content, and message. I find they really hold your hand when it comes to knowing exactly what and how to pitch to them. Don’t waste your time pitching an article that doesn’t fit their rules. Magazines do not like that!
6. Choose one of the 3 to pitch your article to.
I would suggest starting small. Get a handle of how things work for smaller, lesser known magazines rather than striving for big, popular ones initially.
7. Have your author bio and head shot already prepared.
Check out the length and simplicity of others’ bios. Consider your landing page. (Home page? About page? Sales page?)
8. Write a good pitch.
Why you and why your article? I created a template (for both magazines and podcasts) that I used as a basis if anyone would like to see it.
9. Have a friend review your article before you pitch.
What is their reaction? Did you have any spelling/grammar mistakes?
Do they have any suggestions? I am grateful to one of my good friends who took few moments to read my articles when I was just starting out to pitch them. Her comments and feedback were always so helpful!
10. Pitch your article to ONE magazine.
Take action! Just start. Get an idea how it works.
Will they respond to you to let you know they received your submission? Will they let you know either way whether they want your article or not? And will they say, “If you don’t hear from us within 6 weeks, assume we aren’t interested”.
11. Do NOT nudge the magazine if you don’t hear from them.
Follow their rules about timing of response and be patient. Magazines do NOT like to be nudged!
12. If your article is accepted, thank the editor!
Build a connection with him/her. Befriend them in any possible way that is appropriate (follow them on Twitter, like their Page, etc.)
13. If your article is accepted, watch the comment boxes on that page.
*Probably one of the most important pieces of advice – stay in touch with those people who are communicating with you! Don’t let those comments remain idle!
14. If your article is accepted, update your bio on your website.
Perhaps add it as well to the front page of your website. Make it known to your potential clients that you are known!
15. Publicize your work!
Share it on social media, in groups that allow it, to your list, etc. Invite those in your world to celebrate your success! And, mention you’d be grateful (if they enjoyed the article), to kindly share it on.
16. Investigate the efficacy of your published article.
Did it get leads? Did you get new subscribers? If not, consider why or why not? Consider the time it takes you to write your articles vs. what it is you are receiving from them.
17. Don’t get dejected when you get rejected.
Rejections don’t necessarily mean your piece wasn’t worthy, but it could mean many other things, such as, it didn’t fit their content, they have an overload of articles at the time, etc.
18. See if you can ask the editor why your article wasn’t accepted.
That is as important to this process as is getting accepted! I have found that if the editor is interested in your work, they will work with you to fix it, edit it, etc. until it’s appropriate for their needs.
19. Take your rejected article and pitch it somewhere else!
If you think your article is “good enough” chances are, someone else may, too!
20. Use your connections.
Ask some of your friends who are published if they have any connections to any of the magazines to which you wish to pitch. (Connections always are helpful!) This is what happened last week.
A friend of mine mentioned that she pitched to Huffington Post, but never heard back. I asked her to send me her article so that I could see review it. My intention was to send her Arianna Huffington’s direct email, thereby bypassing the submission form.
(Out of respect to Arianna, as a rule of thumb, I do not offer her email to everyone who asks me about publishing an article in Huffington Post – and I get asked a lot!).
21. Continue to pitch.
Many of my earlier publications came from:
A. HARO (Help A Reporter Out).
A few things to know about them. Act FAST. When you receive their daily emails, if don’t ask FAST, don’t waste your time pitching. They receive thousands of responses for each of their leads. Additionally, their website has a template for you which I have found super helpful.
B. Jeffrey Moore’s “Every Day Power Blog”.
The way it works is he sends out weekly trending topics to interested writers via a Google doc, the interested writers initial their names next to the topic they are interested to write about it, they pitch their article, and then he lets you know if your article was published or not.
He’s always looking for writers, so this is a great place to start. Plus, he has a reading list of over 7,000 people!
C. Google your message “weight loss” and “submissions” or “write for us”, etc. You will get a list of magazines who are looking for writers.
22. The more press you get, the more press you get!
One of the best pieces of advice I ever received regarding getting published in magazines, “The more press you get, the more press you get!” It’s so true. In fact, at some point, you may even find magazines coming to YOU!
Case in point, the “Wealthy Gorilla” reached out to me a few months ago asking me if I would consider writing for them. They are looking for writers. Consider checking out their magazine!
23. Let people know where you’ve been published.
Once you have a few articles under your belt, in your future pitches, let them known where you have been published. The more places you are published, the more credibility you will create for yourself.
24. Stay in touch with the editors.
Much of the work that we do in business is based on relationships. Don’t make this is a one-sided thing, where you get published and then leave the editor in the lurk.
Maybe start a list of those editors in a Google doc, and every so often, send them note, a holiday email, etc. Let them know you are still grateful for having had the opportunity to be a part of their team!
25. Like everything in life, this takes time.
Be patient. And most importantly, ENJOY! It the writing/pitching process is not fun for you, consider other ways of gaining visibility.
I think that’s about it!
And now guess what I think I’m going to do right now with this content? Pitch it to a magazine!
Once you get the hang of it, getting your articles published in popular publications is fairly straight forward.
Find the website you want to write for. Check if they accept guest articles. Write a high quality article on the subject they’re looking for, and then send it to them in a short email.
Don’t beat around the bush!