How To Pitch To A Magazine

March 12, 2018

“Dear Sir” begins the email.

Before I can even fathom what the emailer is wanting to discuss, I hit delete.

Why? Because this is one of the many terrible pitches I get a day. If the sender couldn’t even be bothered to figure out my gender (even though my email includes my name) then I can’t be bothered to read their pitch.

But rather than send out a sarcastic social media post that might get a few retweets and a few more bruised egos. I thought I’d actually do some good and give some advice.

So pay attention. Because if you want to see your business featured in a magazine or want to work for the magazine, you might find this useful.

And because if I get called sir one more time, I might die.



Do your research. This very small and simple task is so often overlooked. Very often I get pitches for something completely unrelated like “Morning Workouts” or even viagra. Take the time to read through the magazine’s site and if it’s in print, get yourself a copy and give that a read too. This will help you get an understanding of what the Magazine publishes and where you’d fit in. Don’t forget to find out the name of the person you’re emailing too and for heaven’s sake, find out their gender.


Get To The Point. The problem is, editors’ and journalists’ inboxes are flooded every day and we haven’t got enough time to read through every email. Help us out and put the main appeal of your story in the subject header. This could be “Keith Richards Lookalike Brings Out Own Album” or something like “Story Idea: Janis Joplin Inspired Vintage Clothing”. It will certainly encourage an email open. And also, if you’re going to have your press release as an attachment, at least paste part of it in the email.


Don’t pitch yourself. Your product may be amazing. Or you may be the next Hunter S Thompson but journos aren’t looking for people or businesses, they’re looking for stories. If you’re a business, tell a story about your product. If you’re a writer, pitch a story idea. If you’re a photographer, pitch coverage of an event. Whatever you do, don’t be boring.


Don’t be offended. I think all too often people get upset or annoyed if an editor doesn’t reply. It’s just not possible to reply to every single pitch (I get over 100 a day). It doesn’t hurt to send a follow-up email after a day or two just in case it was overlooked, but never send more than that. If you haven’t received a response, think of a new angle or a new story idea- it might have just been the way your worded your pitch.


 Give Examples. It’s astounding how often people pitch without giving examples. I’ve been sent rates for something the sender hasn’t even done before. If you’re pitching a story idea, we will want to see links to previous work or your business website. And if you haven’t done something before (like gig photography) go get some experience first, build a portfolio, then send your rates. Not in reverse order.


I hope, after clicking publish, the reign of terrible press releases will be over and my inbox will be an entertaining place to be. But I also hope Coldplay will stop making music. Neither will probably happen in my lifetime, but at least I have my hope.