Publicity Hounds spend so much time and energy chasing after staff writers at national magazines, that they often overlook a much more valuable group of contacts–the freelancers that write for those publications.
Why are freelancers more valuable? Because many of them already have key contacts at lots of major magazines and newspapers. That means if you give freelancers a great story idea, they can sometimes take that idea and spinit into four or five separate and distinct stories, each with its own angle. They can then sell each article to a different publication. It’s more money for the freelancer, and it means multiple hits for you.
But finding freelancers isn’t always easy. Here are some tips to help you:
–When you’re reading newspapers and magazines, look for the byline “Special to the Daily Tattler.” That usually means the article was written by a freelancer.
–Also read the identifier paragraph at the end of an article. It might state specifically that the writer is a freelancer and it might include contact information.
–If you want to get into a certain publication, call and ask for the names of freelancers who write for them, then pitch them. If you can’t get contact information, search for their names on Google.
–If you already know staff writers at newspaper or magazines, ask them if they freelance for other publications. Some do.
–Hang out in news groups and chat rooms specifically for freelancers. Once you have a good feel for who covers what, you can pitch them. But don’t pitch your article in the chat room. Contact the freelancer privately.
I found a freelancer who writes for four national women’s and lifestyle magazines and a statewide brides magazine. She covers topics such as home decorating, financial advice, interior design, Europeans and Americans who design upscale homes, new moms, alternative health and family travel. She’s a great contact if you have stories in those areas, and in the January/February 2005 issue of The Publicity Hound 8-page electronic newsletter, she details more about what she’s looking for.
Order the issue here and be reading it in a few minutes.