As a content writer, you will eventually (if you haven’t already) have to write a pitch for something that you are interested in writing. This could be a blog post for a website or blog that you’ve followed for years. Maybe you are trying to increase your reach and build your following by guest posting on blogs with similar topics. If you are new to copywriting or just started your own blog, you may need to write some convincing pitches in place of providing writing samples to get those jobs flowing in. Guest posting can also help you with SEO by increasing the number of relevant backlinks you have to your own website or blog. No matter what your reason is for needing to create a pitch, we are here to help make sure that your pitch is as good as can be!
The Pitch Subject Line
The subject line is actually not as important as you may think. Many websites and blogs that regularly accept guest posts will have guidelines on what to put in the subject line. This helps them direct the email to the correct person for review, especially if they post content in many different topics or niches. If you are pitching to a website or blog that doesn’t have guidelines available for guest post pitches, feel free to spice things up and get creative. Make sure your subject line is relevant: use a statistic or catchy message that has to do with your post, mention the editor by name, or ask a question about what you plan to write about.
Human Connection and Relationship
Starting out with something that will help build a human connection or relationship with the editor will help you sell your story, regardless of what it is about. If you can build a relationship with someone they are more likely to help you out. This section may take a little research but it will pay off.
If you can find out who the editor is, you can normally find information about them in the about us section of a website or by searching out their social media pages. By putting in the work, you can quickly build a relationship in your post by addressing them by name, including any key phrases that they commonly use, and complimenting or congratulating them on promotions, work they have done, moves, and more.
If you can’t find out who the editor is, there are still ways to begin building that human connection in your pitch. If you are pitching to a clothing company, include a sentence or two about why you relate to the brand or what experiences you have had with the brand. Including something that evokes a memory is also a good way to create that human connection. Another way to create it when pitching to a blog could be including how you felt about a post by the writer and why you felt the way you did. These types of introductions give your pitch the human element, making it easier for the writer or editor to remember you and accept your idea. Without a human element, your pitch is bland and forgettable.
Proving Your Value In Your Pitch
When you are creating a pitch for a guest post or any other type of content, it is your job to show the editor or writer what value you can create for them. They are not in the business of building your blog, so the generally don’t care how much a guest post will help YOU out. They want to know what value you will bring to their website, blog, and followers. Do you have research or expertise on an item that would fit their niche? Are you able to bring a fresh outlook on something they their readers are familiar with? What will your guest post do for them and their followers?
A good way to prove your value is to include a concise but helpful review of your project or post. Of course, you aren’t writing out the post for them just yet. Your review should be only a few sentences and thoroughly inform them of what it is you are wanting to share.
The body of the pitch can be a little lengthier with more details about your project or post. This is where you can convince them that you know what you are talking about by showing them the key details of what you plan to provide. Many people use this area to share the headings of their posts. By sharing the headings of the post, you give the editor or writer a chance to see a good outline and decide if it is something that will truly benefit them or their followers. If your post is research-based, you could also include your key findings here.
While this section can be a little beefier than others, you still want to keep your pitch scannable and to the point. Editors and writers, especially for larger blogs that frequently use guest posting, review multiple pitches per day. This is on top of their other work of creating content, reviewing content, editing content, approving pitches, and more. You want to respect their time and show them what they need without too much extra information. If your pitch is pages long when it could be one or comes through as one big block of text, it may not even be read.
If you are reaching out to have something guest posted that you have already completed, share your work with them. Include a link to your work right away. You want to take as much work off of the editor or writer as possible to ensure that your work is reviewed.
Ask the Question and Complete the Pitch
You’ve put in all the work to research and compose the perfect pitch email, but now it’s time to ask the question that you’ve been leading up to. So, how do you pop the big question? One great way is to bring back the relevance of your project or post. Add a sentence or two to show, again, why your post is relevant to the website or blog you are pitching to. Follow that with a simple yes or no invitation. “So, are you interested in this exclusive post?” “Would you like me to send you the work for review?” Questions like these allow the editor or writer to simply answer you with yes or no. You don’t want to over-complicate this portion because, again, you want to take as much work off their place as possible.
Just like any other job application or interview, it is always a good idea to follow up. If you haven’t heard back within a week, this extra step shows that you care and are invested in your pitch. It also helps prevent your pitch from slipping through the cracks. If you pitched to an editor that was extremely busy the week before and didn’t get a chance to check their emails, this could serve as a friendly reminder to keep an eye out for your name. When following up, make sure you wait at least a week. Also, do not keep sending follow-up emails week after week. If you haven’t heard anything after your follow-up, it is best to pitch a new idea or seek out other blogs or websites that are in the same niche.