One of the most effective long-term strategies for becoming an authority in your industry is to get your insights published in places clients and industry colleagues will see. In a post for Consulting Success, Michael Zipursky shares in exhaustive detail how you can get started with publishing. It starts with five steps:
- Make a target list.
- Don’t start with a pitch.
- Reach out.
- Provide value.
- Continue outreach with additional points.
Recognition over Time
The idea is to build up your writing resume over time. That means in the beginning starting with your personal website, or local or small publications, of which there are many. (Additionally, we accept guest contributions too!) You will climb your way up the publishing ranks eventually. Begin with a list of 10 to 20 publications to which you would like to submit, and locate details on their writers and editors online.
When you start submitting, Zipursky says not to first contact the publisher with a “pitch,” especially if it is a larger publisher. This is because there are dozens of people all trying to sell publishers with the same argument, e.g., “This is the hot current topic you need to drive lots of fresh clicks to your site!” It all starts to sound the same. Instead, make the effort to build a one-to-one relationship with a key person in the organization. In doing so, you create an ally, and when he or she does finally publish you, it will likely create a path for many more articles down the line.
Zipursky gets specific about the correct way to reach out to a writer or editor. It should begin with praise:
Don’t just throw [praise] out there, but really mean it. They can tell if someone just says, “Hey, I love your work.” It’s much more powerful if you can say, “I love the last article that you wrote on this topic. I thought that was really great.”
You can also provide a comment on an article that is related to your area of expertise. So go in, connect with them, give them some praise and find ways to add valuable context to the topic they’ve written on or what their site is all about.
The fastest way to build a relationship is to search in earnest for ways to add value to that person’s publication. Perhaps you can make recommendations for expansion, for instance. In any case, wait until at least the second email to start actually pitching article ideas, and even then, make sure the idea relates in some way to something that you see the publication doing.
These are the five steps, yet Zipursky delves even deeper at the full post, discussing how to leverage your contacts and providing a personal example. If you want to go the whole way down the rabbit hole, you can view his post here: http://www.consultingsuccess.com/5-tips-to-get-published-in-industry-publications