Connect with us

Success Advice

5 Things I Learned From Pitching Top Publications

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

Everyone can publish a post on Facebook, go live on Instagram, or record a Youtube video. While social media is making out to be a serious business for experts and influencers around the globe, there is nothing that says “I am the expert” as much as a feature in a top magazine.  

There is still a certain mystery about traditional media; they are a bit of a closed club with no clear membership guidelines. During the last 4 years, I pitched and placed stories in multiple media outlets from top tier magazines like Forbes and Entrepreneur to national TV like NBC. 

Here are a few things I learned that would hopefully help you to share your expertise using the power of media:

1. No one cares if you are a best-selling author

Neither do they care about your “top-rated app” or “new exciting startup.” The number of your reviews or rankings alone are not a good foundation for an interesting story. Sure, that’s an important achievement for you. However, asking a journalist to feature you solely on the basis of being a best-selling author won’t do. You have to dig deeper. 

Imagine you are on a plane about to take off for a 4-hour flight. Next to you is a stranger starting a conversation. If you open with a list of your achievements, that will likely just be awkward. Instead, what if you get to know your seat neighbor, and when the moment is right to tell them about a book you’ve published or company you’ve built, you might be in for a long and interesting conversation. Journalists don’t care about your list of achievements, but they do want to hear from people who lived through some outstanding experiences and lived to tell the tale. 

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” – Theodore Roosevelt 

2. This is a place where your degree finally matters

While employers no longer care about where you went to school and which diploma you are holding, the media still does. Every journalist and editor that holds a value of objectivity would make sure to find at least a few original sources for their article. They would often look for studies, personal interviews, and some expert opinions. And how do they know someone is an expert? Diplomas, certificates, and other proof of your knowledge come in handy. 

You are much more likely to be quoted by a journalist if you hold any of those official certifications. Just send your short bio to a few journalists covering topics in your area and ask them to put you on file, so they come to you next time when they need a source. 

Pro tip: Editors appreciate diverse sources. So, even if a journalist already featured your competition, you can still get a spot in the next article.

3. Find a new angle to something that’s already widely discussed

One of my favorite techniques is called “stupid majority.” There is a great TEDx talk about it by Jerry Silfwer. He suggests that one of the best ways to get your message across is to debunk a popular belief. 

For example, about 30 years ago, the general public believed that fat was one of the unhealthiest food types, with a large body of studies of links between cholesterol and heart disease. The “stupid majority” already had an awareness of the topic. Here enters the “smart minority,” telling us that it isn’t all that easy. In fact, there are “good fats,” which are essential for your nutrition. Where there is already an existing conversation, it’s easier to enter with some new facts, examples, and studies, rather than trying to pitch a whole new topic never discussed before.

In your industry, ask yourself what are some things that everyone believes and you know is wrong? 

4. Know who you are pitching: Contributors vs staff writers

It goes without saying that before contacting anyone with a cold pitch, you should do your research. Apart from analyzing their topics, style, and area of interests, it’s important to understand what their primary reason for being a writer is. 

There are 2 main types:

Staff writers are paid to write. They have weekly and daily quotas for the number of articles they should turn out. In the reality of today’s media, one staff writer might be covering a spread of different topics and need to stay on top of many of them. Point out a new trend or research when contacting them – it might be a great start.

Contributors and freelance writers usually do writing on the side. Often, those are entrepreneurs with primary business outside of the media platform. They often use media platforms to position themselves and sometimes, to promote their services. They only publish when they find something really exciting, as there are no minimum requirements for them. With contributors, it would help to build some personal connections first and show them how a conversation with you might support their needs.

“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.” – Dale Carnegie

5. The Media moves fast. So should you

When you’ve been sending pitches and finally get a “yes” or even a “maybe,” you have to be ready to follow up with more information very quickly. We are talking hours, not days. Stories move quickly and often being picked for an article comes down to sending the right information at the right time. If you follow a few reporters, you’ll see they sometimes turn out a few stories a day and the best way to respect their work is by giving them accurate information fast.

Media exposure can provide an enormous advantage when it comes to attracting investors to your startup or establishing your authority as a personal brand. Keep these tips handy when you start building relationships with the writers. 

Have you ever tried to be featured in other top publication sources? If so, what did you do? Share your stories with us below!

My name is Natasha Zo. I’m a media relations specialist, artist, and salsa enthusiast. For me all these career paths of mine boil down to one core interest: I love to meet people, discover stories that are worth sharing and help those people to be heard. I’ve helped multiple authors and entrepreneurs to score that Amazon bestseller title and amplify their message through the power of media. Currently, I’m running a PR agency that helps wellness thought leaders to raise their expert status by building a media presence.

Success Advice

3 Mistakes People Are Making When Setting Goals

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

What goes wrong when goal setting?  (more…)

Continue Reading

Success Advice

Here’s Why You’re Not Living the Life of Your Dreams

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

Imagine jumping out of your bed in the morning with a smile on your face, feeling happy and energetic. You can’t wait for the day to start. But such mornings are very rare for you, aren’t they? What’s not so rare for you is waking up every day with the same boring feeling. Not feeling so energetic for your day to start. Thinking “Oh, I have to go to the office again”. And then the whole day you don’t feel very good. (more…)

Continue Reading

Success Advice

The Hidden Secret All Successful People Have but Don’t Talk About

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

When most of us think about success in life, we automatically fix our minds upon material items of money, cars, clothes, or power. Many successful people indeed have these items at their disposal. However, many of us get blinded by these symbols of success and misplace where successful people actually receive their source of prosperity, abundance, and wealth. (more…)

Continue Reading

Success Advice

3 Hidden Culprits of Burnout and How to Catch Them ASAP

Published

on

image credit: unsplash

Burnout is one of those words you associate with simply being tired, feeling fatigued, or needing a break. But what most people are unaware of is that it goes so much deeper. Some people suffer for years because they can’t get to the root cause of where their burnout is even coming from. (more…)

Continue Reading

Trending