Opportunities to find homes for your articles in great publications are almost everywhere. Flying in a plane, riding in a train or sitting in your doctor’s office. They are there in print. But, don’t forget social media. All magazines advertise, have social media accounts and want to be discovered to increase their readership.
As writers we need to expand how we think of finding homes for our articles. Keeping an eye out for publications as you go about your day-to-day activities means you can uncover a gold mine of opportunities without even trying.
That’s why I want to share that there are multiple ways to find publications that are a little more fun than research. These are things you do every day like scrolling through Facebook or talking with friends.
Here’s an example: scrolling through Facebook this week I saw Italics Magazine had liked a photo I posted of Italy. This one:
They reached out and invited me to like their page. Interested, I clicked on the link and had a look at their Italy based content. I sent them a pitch on the spot. Within a day, they had replied and wanted the article.
This was huge. Finally, I had landed my first European publication and they found me. A big win without all the time-consuming research.
Researching publications can be very time-consuming and daunting. For some, especially when you are starting out, it can be the scariest part of the writing process.
Thoughts like “where do I start” can bubble up, overwhelming us. This is one of the biggest obstacles we face. I know writers that don’t start at all because they feel like they’re fumbling around in the dark, so it goes in the “too hard” basket.
That is why it is so important to put yourself out there. I’ll be honest, the social media aspect of being a travel writer was unnerving for me at first.
Now I can’t imagine being without it. Publications can and do find me. They do the work for me so I don’t have to spend hours researching magazines.
How do they find me?
Through photos, social media posts, and online articles. You need to be out there so when they do a search they find you. If you don’t, then it will go to another writer who has an online presence.
How do you make it work?
When a magazine likes one of your posts, look them up. They already like your stuff so it’s the perfect opportunity and you have a greater chance of finding a home for your article.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to these new publications. They are looking for travel writers. They want to find reliable writers to supply their content needs. So take advantage of it.
Another fun way is to talk to your existing contacts. Friends, local businesses, and even people you have worked with in the past. You already have these relationships so they can work for you. Plus, you know the person you’re contacting—which takes some of the scariness out of it.
Here is a great example: I was just commissioned to do a “walking tour” video of Cozumel.
Using an existing contact at a magazine, I found out who to send a pitch to. Although the editor didn’t need the article I pitched, they did look at my website. They saw a video and asked for something similar. If there was no online presence I would have missed out on that opportunity.
So, by having an online presence and paying attention to what’s happening in your social media feeds as you scroll through Facebook or Instagram with your morning coffee, you can pick up writing opportunities.
Not only is it more fun, you’re doing it anyway so now you can find homes for your articles while you browse.