How to Craft an Email to Magazines


PR for Crafters


Lesson Info

How to Craft an Email to Magazines

So now that you know who to contact and what their email addresses it's all about crafting the right email and I'm going to give you an example similar to the one that I gave you for the blog's, but there is an art to sending out this emails as well. So how do you picture products via email to get your email open? I know we've seen this slide many times before today. I wanted to share with you one more time because this is so important again when it comes tio pitching magazine editors, if you're looking at it from your helping them do their job, you're helping them discover products that are relevant to their readers that provide value and that's making their job easier. That sounds like a lot more fun than pitching a product, so I want you to keep this in mind as you are doing your pr outreach to magazine editors as well. So a few tips when you reaching out to magazine editors, email works best? I can tell you how many times if you try to call your call will never get answered. It'll ...

go straight to voice mail oftentimes they're not going to listen to those voicemails I know unless they know they're expecting them, so calling and leaving a message is definitely a waste of your time do not call most of five and I've actually surveyed magazine editors last time I was doing this course and I reached out to tons of them and I said, what do you prefer when someone pitches you? Do you prefer ah postcard in the mail? Do you prefer phone call? Do you prefer a fax? Whoever said still sends faxes right? Or do you prefer to get an email or phone call? Ninety nine point nine of them said, I want to be pitched by e mails so they love it. There is an exception. I know when I was reaching out to the oprah magazine editor for their oldest feature for the holiday gift guide, I said, you know, I pitched by email and they said, no, we actually don't do any pitches by email here's the address can you send us your product? And then once you have all the products, if we get in before this deadline, I'll take him to oprah and we'll all look through them and we'll decide. So that was one time where now I know if I'm going to pitch this particular editor oprah magazine, he prefers me to send my products by mail first, but that's usually not the case usually they will want an email, so keep that in mind, which is why we've been spending so much time gathering their email addresses or why we've been spending money on buying their database that has their email addresses because this is often how they prefer to be pitched and then also used the word you and your instead of me. So instead of saying I launched my company and my product is amazing do what we did with the last email when you're saying are you still looking for this? I know your readers would love this your readers will benefit because of x y z reasons so it's all about crafting it so that it's talking directly to their readers rather than talking about you and there's so many great ways to still talk about you while you're keeping the readers and mine I know this morning we're talking about how does your story fit into their story and all of those things and this is exactly where that comes in because you sharing your own story and your own product but you're putting it in such a way that it's all about them doing helping them do their job easier and helping their readers really discover some awesome products like yours right? So that's how all of that fits in here so use you and your throughout your website even when you are sending email messages to your list have a two way conversation use you use your same when you're reaching out to retailers, so I think I made that point clear enough I feel like I've talked about it so many times city but it really is important and it makes such a difference when you have a conversation with someone via email and you you set it up in that way oftentimes people ask me well, is there a better day of the week or I should be sending my email and yes, I know it really depends there really isn't a bad day to send it but if you're really looking I know people really want an answer so if you're really looking for the optimal time to be sending this tuesday to friday is usually best monday is crazy they just have come back from the weekend and they have so much to do a ton of e mails although I do know that a lot of magazine editors still opened their emails on the weekends we all look at our e mails in the weekend but were leased or over less likely to replying the weekends than we are when we're sitting down at work so I would recommend avoiding mondays and fridays are sort of iffy because oftentimes they're the line is a friday so if they have a lot of deadlines to meet and they have to get stuff in before the weekend and then that means they're busy and they're not going to be checking their evil so you can still send that on friday it still works but if you're really looking for a really great time tuesday wednesday thursday work better, but friday is still better than monday. Monday is just crazy nights too much stuff to do and oftentimes people, the other thing that people ask is, well, what time of the day should I send it? So think about it from their perspective as well, so they get in a nine o'clock they're super busy looking at their email, their deciding which ones to enter that's probably not the best time they want to be reaching out to them if you look at it at the end of the day, even within our own businesses, too. We are so busy at the end of the day trying to get everything done trying to wrap things up, and we're less likely to open an email at the end of the day than we are to open it at the middle of the day. So keep your e mails in the middle, but also keep in mind that a lot of magazine editors are based on the east coast time, so by not every for example, if you're pitching tio san diego magazine, obviously there in san diego, so keep that in mind, too. As you're pitching, I know there's so much stuff to think about. But it is really important because you do want to reach them when they're more likely to actually open your email and keep it short as always, I'm a huge fan of get right to the point asked for what it is that you want and keep it as short as you can, so let's, look at the email format again here, so the first paragraph you want to personalize it, make it super relevant to what it is that they're looking for if you know that an editor hates yoga, but she loves stretching and if that's relevant to what you're doing and what you're pitching, by all means mentioned that they love to know that you know a little bit and no it's, not creepy. I know sometimes people think we're one they think I'm creepy because I know this about them. Well, that's public information that they're sharing and social media is public information too, so it's like you're going and you're asking their best friend about there deepest, darkest secrets that they've all published this, they are sharing it with the world they want other people to know your second paragraph should highlight the benefits of your product and we'll go into that again, but tell them why you think your product will be great for their readers and why you're or white their readers are actually going to love it. The third paragraph can highlight features, and this could be a little different from when we were pitching blog's, but it's pretty much the same format and your fourth paragraph can end or can offer them sample. So just like we did with bloggers, thank them for their time offered to send them a sample and ass which sample they would need, but keep in mind, keep answering the question what's ended for their readers. Why should they care? We all know why we care, right? Because it's, our own brand, we all have reasons why we care about it, but why should the editor care? And why most important, my should their reader scare? So keep entering that, and if your question or if your email doesn't answer, why should the reader scare? Then think about read writing that email so that it answers why should their reader scare? Oh, so let's, look here at a sample email for a magazine editor, and you'll see that the format is quite similar to the format that we were using for the blogger. So it says jackie here's a great gift under thirty dollars for your upcoming holiday gift guide in lucky, so I'm not asking her a question I could be if I wanted to, but just to switch things up a bit, I'm still telling her exactly what I know she's looking for because I've done my research I've looked at editorial calendars, which we talked about earlier and I know that this year lucky magazine is doing gifts under thirty dollars and I'm making this up I don't want you to go pitching lucky magazine because I said that they're looking for thirty dollars gifts this is just for demo purposes, but I'm assuming from stuff they've done in the past that this would be a topping that they would actually write about so I'm using I'm already starting the conversation in my subject line so she knows she's looking for that she's going to be more likely to open it because I'm speaking directly to her and then it says hi jackie, how are you and often times I feel like people think that they have to be really formal when they reach out to press because what's the media and they work on new york times or oprah but you still have to be human and be personable and there's no reason sometimes I get e mails and I'm not joking here someone will say dear ma'am, I automatically delete it. I will not even read it that that might be really hard I don't know if anyone else does that, but I won't even I'd rather someone say hi how's it going then I'll keep reading but if they say dear ma'am, sometimes I'll you know, it'll say, dear sir slash madam automatic delete, so don't do that. It just takes all of that human touch, there's nothing personal about dear ma'am, but when you're saying, hey, jackie, how's it going, how are you? That is so personal, it's like you're talking to a friend. So are you still looking for gifts under thirty dollars for your upcoming holiday gift guide in the december issue of lucky? If so, I'd love to introduce you to x y z cell company, a brand new line of handcrafted soap that will inspire your readers. So here I'm using you a lot. I'm telling her exactly why I'm reaching out, and I'm telling her that I want to introduce her to my sill, plein, and I'm having this conversation, and this is where that image that we were talking about in the previous segment, this is where that image or coming as all you put this here, if it makes sense, if not, put it under this paragraph, but again, never as an attachment that should be in line where they conceded without having to click on an attachment and wait for it to be open, it should be right there, visible for them to see the second paragraph now I know this looks more like it's more than a paragraph, but this is just one paragraph with three bullet points, and the reason I love bullet points or breaking things out like this is because it makes it really easy to read so let's say she doesn't have time to read everything, and I was talking about bolding stuff before, but if she's just scanning my email, she can see, nurture you with sustainable ingredients, make you feel good by giving back and inspire you, and even just by reading that she kind of knows or my product is about and why this would be great for her readers, so you don't have to pull things out, but I find that it's much easier to read if you do it in this format than if I was to have these ass three separate sentences and put them all within the same paragraph is just a little easier to read on the eyes and much easier to scan through, and oftentimes I don't know if any of you do this, but when you get an email, oftentimes will scan it first to see what it's about and that we'll go and read every single word on it. So this makes it really easy for them to scan through, and you want to make their job easier so they will read all of it if they want more information. But you don't have tio put everything in one big chunk just make it easy for them. So it's has your readers will love to give or get x y z soaps as a gift, because ourselves and you see here that I'm telling her not on lee, why my readers will love or why her readers love my product, but I'm saying specifically they would love to give it or get it as a gift, because I'm pitching for their holiday gift guide, some being really specific here and then I'm saying, nurturing with sustainable ingredients, and this is a benefit, and this is a feature right here, so you want to focus both on the benefits and features, but if I had just said, each bars handcrafted, we donate a bar and we have positive words that's, more of the features that's not really it's making her work hard in terms of having to think, ok, so how is this what's in it from my readers? The fact that their handcrafted that's not really in it for the readers, but the fact that they're they nurture her readers with sustainable ingredients? That's, that's definitely a benefit, so we want to look at it as benefits and features, and you wantto emphasize both of those in that email without being too worried, so I think there's even the words that I could have left out here that I didn't need to put in there, but I wanted to show you that you can really do benefits and features and not a lot of words, and they're so that should be your second paragraph and already have answered the question what's in it for her readers for readers are going to get so you know they're going to feel good, they're going tio be inspired, and they're going to feel nurtured. And so so whatever your story is and the benefits you could put those in there free now your third paragraph again, it gives her the information working her readers find it, how much does it cost and where can she find more information? So it's saying, our bars retail for eight dollars and they're available at x y z, so company dot com and on more than fifty retailers in the u s and canada, would you like a few samples for review? If so, please let me know which bars you'd like, and we'll get them out to you right away. So this is telling her all the information that she needs. She needs to know how much it cost, she needs to know where people can get it and there's the social proof there. That my soaps are in fifty retailers now, if your silks are not in fifty, retailers, don't make that up. You do want to still say information that's, true and often times another question that I get from people is, should I mention to build that credibility, that my soaps or my products were featured in other magazines? So my advice to that is no don't mention that it's not relevant to her readers, because she's not going to write to her readers that these soaps were also in oprah magazine, right? So it's relevant to you, and you think that it might give you credibility, but it's not relevant to her readers, but the fact that your soaps are in fifty retailers that's definitely relevant to her reader, so scan your email and think is this sentence relevant to what toe, what her readers are looking for? And the fact that you got press while it does give you a ton of credibility, it's not really relevant to her now? Oftentimes they would say, if you are a smaller brand and you were featured, maybe on the today show, oftentimes you can mention that two in a pitch to a magazine, but that's because that's a totally different media outlets it's a tv show versus a magazine, so I still don't think it's necessary. But often times people feel like, well, I don't have anything else in this was huge for me, so I want to mention if that's the case and your pitching your products to a magazine, you can talk about tv or vice versa but otherwise don't tell the today show that you are also on good morning america they don't really need to know that, and if they know that chances are of them featuring you is a lot less because I called she already has the coverage and good morning america has already covered this so it's not really new because the whole world knows about it now that it's been featured on good morning america, so they don't need to know that it doesn't really matter to them. But what matters is all of the other things the pricing where people could find it and what retail stores you're in if you haven't. If you don't have retailers it's totally fine, it's not they're not going to say, oh, we don't like this because it's not of retailers because their readers can still get it from from your website and in the last paragraph you can thank her for for her time and you can say thanks so much for considering x y z so company for upcoming college, a gift guide and lucky magazine and I look forward to working together so you can keep it really simple this is still friendly and not too formal sometimes will people will say you know thank you so much for your consideration I know your time is really valuable and I appreciate you taking the time and again you're almost apologizing for reaching got um so don't apologize you don't have to feel bad that you're helping her do her job and discover products so don't there's no reason to apologize for doing any of this you're doing your job she's getting help from you to do her job so a few more tips that I wanted to share with you and I share this before but use their first name in the subject line it goes such a long way and then include a picture like we talked about of your product and that has an attachment but in line with your message and if you have more than one product that you want to showcase make sure you created a little collage that's still one image that showcases all of the products that you want to showcase so now I want to share with you some things that I reached out to magazine editors and I said what drives you crazy when people pitch you their products what are you looking for? What do you hate and what do you like and what you don't like? So this is the style editor from people stylewatch magazine and she said this riser crazy, she said, read the site and noah section that your pitch might fit into be concise into the point wordy pitches are deadly immediate delete one follow up it's plenty no response is a response in itself never follow up the same day, especially by phone that's the quickest way to make me turn down your pitch this is so much awesome information she sharing in here and if you happen to pitch her, you can use all of this knowledge but this I feel like every editor will feel this way they want to know that you're familiar with their magazine you're pitching your product for the right section in their magazine and they also want you to be concise keep your email short really a long email is an immediate delete not only for her but for all of the other editors that I've interviewed as well and she has a really great point one follow up this plenty no response is response in itself, so if you follow up a week later and you still don't hear back, just move on pitch a different person at that magazine or picture with a different story a few months down the road yeah, after all this information, I'm now curious how much um, how much of the stuff that's published within magazines is actually pitched versus found? Yeah, great question I don't know percentages but I do know that for example like the style market editor that they'll go to markets and look for products but the other thing is that they get so many pitches and they write about so many of the products that they get pitched with so I think it's huge there's I would say zero percent of the magazines that I pitched would have written about my products if I hadn't pitched them so that's a really great point I think you shouldn't wait for them to come to you you should go to them first because let's say if your product was featured in the magazine and let's say the lucky editor also reads madamoiselle magazine they're not going to say oh I just saw this product there let me contact her and write about it too now I do know off some really cool stories where a magazine editor will actually say, oh, I just saw your product on etc and oftentimes they will go on at cnn do research before you know for cool products especially they're looking for me for handmade products so they might discover your products that way and reach out to you but that is often not the case usually you have to take initiative you have to be in charge of getting them to know about your products yeah when she says no a section that your pitch might fit into do they mean specifically like let's say you're talking about a magazine that only covers home things but I know that every month they have a very specific thing is that we're she means there is that you know this would be great for fifteen new fines or whatever yeah yeah so great question so you'll see see like osama with oprah magazine to have the old list that's part of every should that's a section they have the women who do great things that's a section they have gales finds I think or gail's favorite that's its own section so you'll see and most magazines it will have the section must month after month so if I think that's what you were talking about you and you will I'm just sorry you just which one section per pitch okay yeah one section perpich and if you don't hear back from that pitch for that one section you can pitch a different person for a different section or you can pitch the same person but usually they're in charge and oftentimes when you look at these editorials they'll say who that section was curated by so that's another way where you can really know who's in which editor is in charge of that section anyone necessarily tell you their title might say curated by claire you know smith or whatever and then you can go to the masthead and you know that claire smith is the lifestyle associate editor so oftentimes look, and if you don't see it right on the page, sometimes it'll say it on the side of the page of sort of have to like open the magazine and its and really small writing there, so there are ways to find out who's working on specific sections and that's something you can call the editorial office and asked to so you could say I want to pitch for the style find section who should I contact and they'll say, hold on, let me put you in touch with their voice mail then you get to their voice mail and you have their name from their voicemail so yeah, but that's exactly what she means if you know what section you want to be in and you should all know what section you want to be in because you've done your research you know, this is the magazine you want to be in. You should definitely be really specific when you reach out to her to let her know what section you want to be in. Okay, so let's look at more feedback from magazine editor. So this is from the editor in chief of austin woman magazine and she said they have not read the magazine and do not know our demographic style sections or even departments they pitched me inappropriate products and services that do not match our readership believe it or not if you have done your job, your product will not serve the needs of everyone. We talked about this earlier today, and your customers feel that way magazine editor I feel that way too. It will fill a gap or serve a specific purpose, and not everyone will want to know about it. So this is, she feels this way. So many other magazine editors have told me the same thing, and your products should not be for everyone. This is not we're not in the business to serve everyone here. We're in the business of creating specific products for specific demographics and people that are looking for those particular products, and she's also saying that they pitch me inappropriate products and services that do not match our readership. This is similar to what we were talking about before. If you have a skin care line, let's say you have an anti aging skin caroline that's probably not appropriate for a magazine like marie claire, who whose readership is, you know, in the women in their twenties, they're probably not looking for anti aging stuff yet. So for marie claire, you might want to pitch another one of your products that has nothing to do with anti aging, so you do have to get really specific and know their leadership, but then also know your products as well. And one more that I wanted to share with you, this is from the fashion and sell editor and pregnancy and new board magazine, and she said, my biggest pet peeve is no images in a pitch if it's not visible in the email or the press kid when I'm so what I'm supposed to be compelled to present to our readers, my attention span doesn't lend itself to seeking get out on my own. So great point again that she has here and she's basically saying, I want to see exactly what I'm getting into before I commit to clicking on that link and going to your web site and finding out more information. So you wantto your job? If you've shifted your thinking, your job is to make her job easier, and if you are making her go to the website to find out more information and to veer images you've already made her to a lot of work now, she probably will go to her web to your web site on her own anyway, because she's more curious and she doesn't want to find that information, but you're not asking her to do that. You're giving her an image of body, a product it looks like and she couldn't see right away. If it's a good fit or not which is why I think it's so important to have the right image is because the image that you use in your email pitch can make or break your the success of that particular pitch so if you're using images I know sometimes let's say you have a like we were looking at my client with the workout clothing on all over her website it's really young women really fit if she was pitching to a magazine that has older demographics she'd probably want wouldn't want include a picture that she has on her home page with those women that are really said she might want to pitch maybe a new image or sharing image that's just the clothing itself without anyone wearing it so it's up to her to the side if she wants to reach that demographic but if she decides that she does want dad probably using a photo of a really young woman who is you know really fit if it doesn't fit their demographic they're automatically going to think it's not for her and for her readers even though her readers could still probably use those products but it's just how you present them and how it makes sense for your readers so lots of head nodding okay so yes that is all about images and those are really important again not as an attachment oftentimes what happens with attachment is that they go directly to spam and they'll never even open your email and the other thing that I wanted to mention is that what I usually dio because often times magazine editors we will want more images, the one samples that want a press release or maybe a media kid. So what I'll do is I'll have a section on my website that's not visible to the public, that I only send that as a link to a magazine editor when they'll say, ok, I'm definitely into or is it? Can you send me high resolution photos? So I have a drop box account and I have a drop box folder that specifically titled for press and whenever someone in the press request more images they off sometimes will request my head shot because they want to feature me to bail request the press release all of that information is on that dropbox account online just sent her the links I won't send her an attachment, but I'll send her a link to the drop box folder when she couldn't get any image that she wants on this also saves you so much time because at first when I would start, she would say, can you send me some high resolution images? And I was sent her an image and she would say, oh, I really like the other one on your website you know that's this color, can you send me that so sometimes, though, they know exactly what image they want, so if you put those all of your images that you have available in high resolution, this is really important. If you put all of those in a folder and dropbox are on your website and just send them the link to that folder, they couldn't get anything they could possibly need from you except for the product sample without having to go back and forth via email and say, oh, I didn't really want that one. Can you send me down one? And can you send me a picture of you as well? So make it easy for them and it's so funny, because when I launched my selflessness and I already knew what I was doing with pr at that point, I had quite a few magazine editors who requested my photos and I said, oh, here's a drop box folder that has everything and quite a few of them wrote back and said, oh my god, thank you. I wish everyone who pitched me made it this easy for me to so automatically she loves my brand because I'm taking it so easy for her, so make it super easy, what are they need? How can you sort of caught out all of that chatter that could happen via email? And can you provide all of that information in a folder and yes, you can draw boxes free you could sign up for a free account you could even host those images on your own web site just make sure that they are high rez the ocean ok, so now let's talk about if you don't hear back so what happens if you don't hear back other than don't take it personally right? So if you don't hear back after a week, follow on via email a week later and sometimes people ask me, well, how how long should I wait? If it's been three days? Does that mean they're not interested? And often times you'll see when you send out a pitch, you probably get most of your responses within those first twenty four hours of people saying yes, I'm interested I love this police send me samples please send me a press release, a press release and so on but you still get email strickling in even that later on in that week. But if you don't hear back, follow up via email a week later again say following up in your email be super nice about it don't yell at them for not responding to you and if you still don't hear back after your first follow up remember how one of the editor said no response is response in itself, especially after a follow up so if you don't hear back a week later from your follow up, let go of that move on either to pitch the same story. If you have time to a different editor or pitch a different story to the same editors. So maybe you want to pitch her now for valentine's day gifts and three months later, picture for for mother's day gifts, and then pitched her again a few months later for holiday gift. So you could still totally pushed the same person at a magazine. Just pitched them with different story ideas, not just one idea, and the other thing you shouldn't do is you shouldn't pitch the same story to two or three or four different editors. At the same time. That's definitely know, too. I think you could do but three or four or five or the entire department. Not a good idea.

Class Description

Doing your own PR can be really intimidating. It is easy to feel like you don’t have the right connections or budget to get featured in the media. And what happens when you don’t have enough product to meet the demand of a huge press mention? Andreea Ayers knows exactly how that feels and in PR for Crafters she’ll help you develop a complete action plan for getting and managing press.

No matter how big or small your handmade operation is, Andreea will help you set up the PR plan that is right for you and the way you do business. She’ll help you identify the types of stories editors are looking for and how to pitch them what you sell. You’ll learn how to:

  • Find out what magazine editors are working on and who to contact
  • Tailor pitches to magazines, bloggers, and other media outlets
  • Increase sales after you get a press mention

Andreea will help set up a PR plan that doesn’t overwhelm your schedule but is in alignment with your target outlet’s editorial calendars. You’ll master the art of making your work more compelling to editors and more likely to be picked up.

Andreea has started and sold three companies in the last five years and that success has been bolstered by her DIY approach to getting press. In PR for Crafters she’ll take you step-by-step through her process and offer lots of tips on making it your own.

Click here to view and purchase Andreea's Increase Your Online Sales bundle.