PR companies and budding journalists are always trying to get their brand or piece of work published, but it’s not always as simple as writing a neatly worded email into a magazine. Here are a few tips to help show yourself in the best light, and give yourself the best chance of getting featured in a publication.
1. Have something worthwhile
Don’t waste your time on chasing up a publication to get something published if you know deep down it hasn’t got a chance. You’ll waste your own time as well as the magazine you’re trying to feature in.
Take your time on it, think about the type of pieces the magazine or newspaper might be interested in before submitting the first thing you can think of. It’s all about creating a good first impression. If you waste their time once, they may not want to read anything else you have, even if it’s worthy of a pulitzer prize.
2. Take yourself and your work seriously
Make sure you’re passionate about your piece of work and try and sell it. If you’re working on pieces that don’t interest you, then don’t work on them. Your work will be of a much higher standard when you care about it.
When submitting it into a publication, translate your enthusiasm and make sure they know you’ve taken a lot of time out to create this piece of work.
3. Use Spellcheck
Again, this all comes down to creating a good first impression. Spelling mistakes and grammatical errors are all signs of laziness and a ‘that’ll do’ attitude. Take a couple of minutes to read and re-read you work and make sure it’s spotless. A spelling mistake in the title or subject bar can have your email moved to the trash before it’s even been properly read.
4. Keep it simple
Don’t overdo it with the bold, italics and coloured fonts. You want to paint yourself as a professional, and you don’t want your email to look as if a 4 year old has been playing about with Wordart on your work.
5. Make the subject line of your email interesting
Publications get tonnes and tonnes of emails a day, so grab their attention and make them read what you have to say. The first thing they will see is the subject bar, so make it enticing. You’re trying to get published, remember? So do everything you can to sell your article.
6. Be as concise as possible
No editor wants to be scrolling through your beautifully written email for hours on end. Keep it short, simple and to the point. Theres no need for a detailed history of your company and its proudest achievements. Say what you’re going to say, and say it. If the magazine need to know anything then they will ask you, don’t make your email an encyclopaedia of your business.
7. Don’t try and be funny
If you’re trying your hardest to make the editor laugh, odds are you’re making them cringe instead. Remain professional whilst you write your email, and save your jokes for your mates at the pub.
8. Contact them at a sensible time
Monday mornings and end of months are bad. Deadlines exist and there are always key busy times, so plan your email around their schedule. They won’t welcome a phone call at 9am on a Monday.
9. Be patient
Publications like magazines and newspapers are always busy. Leave it a couple of days before sending a polite reminder. If you don’t get a reply after that, then take the hint.