Note how in the title I specified the HUGEST blogs, and not just the biggest. I am talking about the crazy popular, well loved, super read blogs that everyone knows about. These are the hardest to get your website, blog or startup featured on. In fact, I have read some articles that claim it is entirely impossible until you have managed to reach profitable status.
I, personally, dispute that… the big boys like TechCrunch and Wired are happy to help the newer kids out. You just need to know how to approach them. Learning the right way to pitch to the biggest named in blogs is a crucial part of selling yourself and your brand.
Here are some tips.
Do Your Homework
The first step is to analyze whether you have something in common with the blog or with one of its current or past contributors.
Linkedin is a great place to find if you are somehow connected to any company in the world:
I also always use this free backlink checker to find recent backlinks to the blog and identify people promoting it (these are usually contributors I’ll start building connections with):
Save It For The Interesting Stuff
Not everything you do is going to be news worthy. At least not to the big guys, who have so much competition for what goes out that day. While you can send the smaller stuff out to the small to medium blogs, or your own with an official press release, don’t bother pitching it to the bigger ones.
Save that for when you have something really interesting about to happen, or the actual launch of your brand.
Remember That Exclusives Sell
There are several blogs out there that will only feature something if they get the exclusive. TechCrunch is a good example, and I have heard that Wired is the same way. If you offer them the exclusive on a big, interesting story, they are way more likely to give you one or more posts about it. But you have to be really careful; if it leaks, they won’t feature you.
So keep a tight lid on all coming stories, and offer the exclusive to the biggest site that will offer you a post, first. You have to know how to leverage what you have to offer, and remember that some blogs will have to be left behind in favor of others. It will pay off in the end.
Start Using Those Connections
Through your time as a blogger / entrepreneur you should have been building connections in your field. Getting someone that is trusted within your industry is a great in for those big blogs that will listen to that person vouch for you.
The bigger the blog, the more impressive that connection has to be. While this one isn’t totally necessary, a little name dropping never hurt anyone.
Download this social media promotion guide and use as step-by-step instructions:
Get your social media organized and start building those connections!
Offer Media to Use
Text content is fine and necessary, but more media is better. Having something like a video, or even a demo if you are releasing something like a game or app, is crucial. It gives the big blogs something to embed or link to, and gives a more personal and direct experience to the brand. It also lets them get the point across with less work.
Let’s face it, those shortcuts are an important part of why they got so big in the first place. Labor has to be carefully applied where it is most needed. But just because your post is less word heavy doesn’t mean it won’t be just as beneficial. Besides, readers are visual, and you have to think about what happens after the post itself.
Pitch It For Broad Appeal
We have always been taught not to toss too wide a net. A more targeted demographic is better, and all that. But when pitching to blogs like Mashable that are aimed at more than one industry, it is better to pitch it to have wide appeal.
This is easier in some cases, such as combining technology and business. Other times, it might take a bit more creativity.
Be Direct In Your Email
I guarantee that the people you are pitching to are born skimmers. They aren’t going to waste their time reading through the hundreds of emails that they get a day. So you need to be direct, succinct and dynamic in your message.
Don’t fill it with too many buzz words, and don’t be flippant. Just give a quick rundown of what you are pitching, give a way for them to contact you and thank them for their time. That way they see what they need to and are more likely to read to the end. You will also stick out in their minds.
Don’t Jump The Gun
One of the worst things you can do is try to release information too early. That app that is almost finished it probably awesome. But if it hasn’t been finalized and released at least as a full beta/demo, there is no point in contacting anyone.
People from these blogs want to be able to try the product themselves. How else will they write honestly about it? Have something that has already had the kinks and bugs worked out for their to check out, or don’t bother.
Do you have any tips for pitching to the giants of the blog world? Let us know in the comments!