Hello writer bees!
With the start of a new year, it’s time to take charge of your freelancing endeavors. How can you achieve the perfect pitch? And no, I don’t mean musically. A pitch, by definition means “words used when trying to persuade someone to buy or accept something.” Sometimes, freelancers must sell their ideas for articles to potential buyers. It’s all about that hustle.
So, let’s talk about creating an eye catching pitch. This could be for a publication you regularly write for, or, if you are gutsy, a website that you’ve never interacted with before.
So important. Know what this potential buyer is looking for. Get a feel for their tone and their content. What kind of topics do they post about? Is the tone formal or informal? Do they include pictures and jokes? Understand their readership as well. Who is their target audience? What message do they wish to present to the world.
Here’s a pro tip; Make sure you read articles from the publication. And yes, I mean it. Actually read, don’t fib about being a “big fan” of their site. Come on, we’ve all done that.
Also, make sure you go over their submission guidelines. Just about every online publication has a guidelines page, some even show their pay per article upfront. And some editors have specific rules that they want followed, like a certain style or word count. Try to make the editor’s job easier and cover all the bases.
Know What Every Great Pitch Needs
Next, let’s break down all the essentials needed for one amazing pitch. Here’s the recipe for greatness.
- What type of material?: Article? Listicle? Essay? Interview? Editors like to know the format you, as the writer, is aiming for.
- Potential Title: Don’t just say the topic is about “tacos”. Instead, try possible, attention grabbing headlines like “Crunchy vs Soft Shells; Which are Superior?” or “Veggie Add-ins for Taco Night.” Be aware, titles sometimes change during the editing process, don’t sweat too much!
- Impact: Talk about why readers would be interested in what you have to say. Give them a compelling reason why your piece fits their publication. If you know specific viewership numbers, provide a guesstimate of how many readers might read your article.
- Stance: If it’s an argumentative piece, discuss your perspective on the subject. Be careful of being too controversial. Always stay fact based in your opinion and cite sources when needed.
Short and Sweet
Imagine you’re in an elevator and only have a couple sentences to convey your idea. Because a great pitch only needs a few sentences to hook someone’s attention. Keep your pitch brief. Be clear and be focused. At the end of a day, a proper pitch should only be a couple hundred words, (~200-300 words).
And consider including your portfolio or publication history and a brief introduction of yourself. Don’t go overboard, we’re keeping things short, remember? But still, try to sell yourself and your talents quickly yet effectively.
Fortune favors the brave, so be brave when pitching article ideas. Best of luck with your pitches, writer bees!
To all the freelancers out there, how do you hustle in your work? What’s your advice on sending the perfect pitch?
Write with Heart,