Knowing how to sell a story is a skill every writer needs to learn.For no matter how good your prose is, if you can’t pitch, you can’t earn. Whether you are trying to gain exposure in newspapers, a regular blogging spot on a website or promoting potential stories for the in-house magazine, you need to sell your idea in just the right way.
So where to start?Firstly, know who you need to talk to. I know this sounds like a no-brainer but plenty of people fire off pitches only for their idea to wallow in a neglected inbox littered with forgotten emails. If you do a little investigating first you will have all the details you need to follow things up later.
Email… then call.Phoning someone out of the blue can be hard – when someone you don’t know calls you with a ‘great idea’, does it fill you with glee? Send an email first and then call the person up a few days later to see what they think. Don’t leave it too long though or your idea might get lost in the work pile.
Size too is always important.I’ve found that if you can’t get your idea across in a two or three short and snappy paragraphs, it’s probably not going to work. You want to entice your reader, not bore them to death.
Style things upKnow your audience and play to your strengths. Grab a couple of back copies of the business magazine or read previous postings on the website. It will really help you gain an insight into the house style and tailor your idea to fit in.
If you’ve been given the job of updating the company blog or newsletter even just knowing where to start can feel intimidating. We are all experts at putting things off. When a task looms large in our heads, it can sometimes feel easier to just ignore it and do something easier instead. All writers procrastinate. […]
A quick heads up on why the words at the top matter. Headline writing is a true art form. Armed with just a few well chosen words you can convey a great deal within a matter of seconds. It’s no surprise then that with so much riding on headlines a lot of thought goes into their […]
Writing for a living can be very rewarding. Every day you create something new; bringing new ideas to life. But EVERYONE has little bugbears about their profession and writing is no exception. Now it goes without saying that I love what I do… but every so often I feel the need to count to ten. […]