Most blogs have a process for choosing whose posts they’ll publish.
And most blogs keep that process hidden in private emails.
They might give you guidelines to help you write and format your pitches and posts the way the blog’s editors like, but that isn’t the same thing as letting you see inside the selection process.
Consider this post (or more accurately, the comments on this post) your window into how we choose the guest posts we publish on this blog. Use it as a place to practice your pitching, or take a serious shot at first prize — or if you’re super-shy, you can just lurk and learn. But we hope you’ll join in!
million hundred-dollar question:
Do you have a great idea for a blog post that an audience of freelance bloggers would want to read?
Then now’s your chance to pitch your blog post idea to us and win $100 if we choose it as our favourite to publish here on Be a Freelance Blogger. 🙂
Here’s how this works…
Enter the Pitchfest!
In case you’re not familiar, Pitchfest is a blog post pitching contest we run here on Be a Freelance Blogger every 3 months. You tell us your blog post idea and we choose our favourites, with prizes of up to $100 for the winners.
The contest starts today.
Your theme for this Pitchfest
This time we’re looking for pitches on the theme of “first clients”.
Interpret that theme any way you like – we’d love to see pitches about how our readers can *find* their first clients, *impress* their first clients, negotiate a *raise* with their first clients, *sell* more services to their first clients, get their first clients to *refer* more clients… you get the picture, right?
We’re looking forward to seeing what YOU come up with. Maybe you could tell us how you did something cool with your very first client, or maybe you’ve got a brilliant and meaningful satire in mind. We don’t know until we read your comments, and that’s what makes it exciting!
- Anybody can enter the contest by typing (or pasting) their pitch into the comments box at the bottom of this page.
- Only ONE PITCH per person, please.
- Follow the pitch format I’ll tell you in a moment.
- After you submit your pitch, Lauren and/or Sophie will offer feedback to help you optimise your idea for this blog’s audience and improve your pitching skills. You may also get feedback from other entrants, BAFB team members, and innocent bystanders — pay attention, because they represent your readers here.
- After you get our feedback, you can revise your pitch if you like and re-submit it by pasting it into a follow-up comment. And yes, that means you can offer us a completely different idea if we’ve told you your first idea definitely won’t work for this blog.
- If you win, we’ll ask you to send us a draft of at least 1000 words, so bear that minimum word count in mind when you pitch.
- First prize: $100 for your guest post, paid on publication.
- Second prize: $50 for your guest post, paid on publication.
- Third prize: A 3-question mentoring package via email.
- Submit your pitch before the end of Saturday, July 2nd, 2016.
- We’ll announce the winners on July 9th.
- If we choose your pitch, we expect you to deliver your first draft to Lauren by July 30th. (But if you need a little longer, let us know and we’ll work around it.)
How to pitch
- Read our general guest blogging guidelines first, then come back here to submit your pitch.
- Suggest at least one headline designed to make freelance bloggers want to read your post.
- Follow the headline with the opening lines you’d use in the post. No less than 30 words, no more than 60. You DON’T need to write a whole post (or even a whole introduction) before you pitch — we’d like to give you feedback on your idea before you write a draft.
- After the opening lines, give us no more than 6 points you’ll make in your post, and provide a one or two sentence summary of each point. (If you plan to make more than 6 points in your post, only tell us the most important 6 in your pitch.)
- Then explain in no more than 3 sentences why this is a great post for Be a Freelance Blogger and why you’re the right person to write it.
- Put your pitch in the comment box at the bottom of this page.
- Check the little box that says “Notify me of follow-up comments” so you’ll know when we’ve given you feedback.
- Submit your comment and if you followed all the steps above, you’re entered into the contest.
- It’s a good idea to explain how your pitch reflects the theme of “first clients” — unless it’s blindingly obvious, in which case you can probably assume we’ll see the connection without extra signposting.
- Remember to tell us why you think your blog idea will interest the people who read Be a Freelance Blogger.
- To get a better idea of what Lauren and I are looking for in your pitch, study the pitches and responses in previous Pitchfests.
- Save a copy of your pitch somewhere before you post it here — if your comment gets lost in the internet, you don’t wanna have to re-write it from scratch.
- Your comment may get held in a moderation queue, especially if it contains hyperlinks. Don’t worry if that happens; we’ll get to it and reply!
OK, it’s time.
Let the Pitchfest begin!