All writers know that building a career in words is only two parts writing and sixty parts marketing. For new writers especially, the ratio of marketing to writing is high. Writing regularly for a handful of publications means less marketing and more actual paying work.
You probably have a few editors you’d like to work with again, but don’t stop there.
Keep a list. Decide where you want to write and pursue those publications. Decide what types of writing you want in your day-to-day. If your goal is to write health and wellness pieces, pitch those markets. You might not jump straight to the ranks of Oxygen magazine but keep them on your list while you build clips from other fitness publications. Eventually, you can show off those by-lines to the big dogs.
You’ve landed an assignment at a publication you’d like to write for again. You rocked the article, you liked your editor and your piece is approaching publication. Now what? Submit another idea…or two.
You don’t have to wait months or start from scratch somewhere else. Remind the editor of your previous work together and submit a couple new article ideas with an offer to send an outline on any that pique an interest. If you met your deadline and delivered what you promised, you’re already ahead of 99 percent of the submissions in her inbox. I landed a regular column this way.
Keep In Contact
Ways to maintain relationships and create new ones include:
Retweet, share, like and tag those posts. Follow your dream editors on Twitter and LinkedIn. Friend them on Facebook. Not only will it keep your name in front of them but it will also keep you informed and current and might even get you some ‘inside’ info, like birthdays and pet peeves.
The Comment Box
“Nice post” is not enough. You have to contribute meaningful and helpful comments. Remember that the purpose of a blog is to help the readers. Bloggers, whether you’ve written for them before or not, will notice your willingness to assist their readers and your knowledge of the subject.
No brainer, right? This is cheaper with online publications because most digital newsletters are free and you’ll probably get the latest download in exchange for your email! For print publications, read the letter from the editor every month and note any changes in format or the masthead.
In your pitch, mention something recent to show you’re informed on what the publication has been up to. A quick “congrats on being named one of the top fifty blogs in the universe” or “excited for the release of your [insert upcoming product here]” demonstrates your continued interest.
The Editorial Calendar
A pitch aimed at the editorial calendar shows you’re professional, do your homework and are there to make the editor’s life a little easier. Find their ‘lead time’ which will tell you how far into the calendar you should focus. If you can’t find an editorial calendar, you can always shoot a quick email asking if there are upcoming themes for a publication.
Narrowing your client list can lead to steady sources of work and less time marketing, which means more time writing and earning. Be professional and respectful. Meet your deadlines. Deliver what you promise and if you maintain those relationships, editors will be relieved when they see your name in their inbox again and again.
Bio: Kristy Rice is a freelancer, blogger and Etsypreneur who focuses her writing on personal development and helping other writers reach their potential. For more writing advice, check out 50+ Writing Markets And Resources To Get More Clients And Increase Your Income.