113 - Start Pitching Yourself Like a Pro with Sabina Hitchen

podcast | Dec 02, 2017

Sabina Hitchen has a long history of PR, and I was so excited when she agreed to come on the show to discuss how we should start pitching ourselves like the pros do. In this podcast, she teaches us how to dissect our favorite magazines, and how to get featured in some of today's largest magazines!

Step #1: Figure out what the magazine stands for.  Do you know what their mission statement is?  Go to the magazine's website (you can look via the publishing house's site).  They will give you a run down of what the magazine describes itself.  Get in the mindset of the magazine.  Also read the Letter From the Editor section to understand what they're about.

Step #2: Head over to the front of the magazine and read the page that lists all of the people who are working there.  The most important people are at the top, and you'll more than likely be avoiding those.  However, what you want to do is figure out your niche/beat and look to the section that identifies those people.  Within that chunk, they will be in the order of importance.

Start at the bottom, if you don't know anyone, work your way up.  You'll want to commit these names to memory.  These are the people you're pseudo stalking.  You should know who your target is for whatever magazine you want to get into.  You'll also want to start following these people on Instagram and Twitter.  LinkedIn can work when you've already started building a relationship with them.

A lot of times these people will even ask on social media what types of things they're looking for at the magazine.

Step 3: Start marking up the magazine and find the places that turn you on business wise.  You're looking for the beat you're in and your niche.  You may also want to go for a feature story.  You're going through the magazine section by section.  Magazines will follow the same sections in each issue.  If you go to your local library, they'll have a lot of back issues of the magazines.  You can see the pattern that they use for these articles.

Step 4:  Find out who is covering each section where you want to be featured.  The first thing you're going to do is look at the section for the obvious name.  Many times their names are listed right next to the story they did.  If you don't see a name, go back to the front where the staff is listed.  Go to that niche and look for any word that says assistant.  Hunt down the assistant and ask them via email or via phone who covers that specific section.

Make sure you give them a day or two to respond to them.  Don't bombard them with questions.

Step 5:  If you get a referral from the gatekeeper, the hope is you're going into the pitch a little warm.  Then you'll reach out to them.  You don't want just to send them a product cold.  They get so much product sent to them all day long.  Don't just blindly send them anything because it's a nuisance if they didn't ask for it.

Reach out via email and make it short and sweet.  Be very clear in your subject line. Don't try to be crafty or sneaky.  Always include a link to your website in there.  Don't hyperlink because they don't trust them if they don't know you.  Then bullet out what you want them to know.  The top bullets are the juiciest things about your product or service, and the bottom are the least interesting.

Then close it with a next step.  Follow up, but also give them at least a week.  If you don't hear from them, make sure you follow-up again.  You can follow-up consistently and politely until you get an answer.  Be persistent, professional, and polite about it.

[ctt tweet="Closed mouths don't get fed. You just have to ask for it. @sabinaknows #podcast http://ctt.ec/Wp2Ig+" coverup="Wp2Ig"]

Where to Find Sabina: SabinaKnows.com.  To be the first to know about Sabina's upcoming course, go here --> Press for Success.

More About Sabina:  Sabina is an entrepreneur, speaker and media expert who for over a decade has dedicated herself to teaching entrepreneurs to share their message with the press and the world, allowing them to grow their brand and make an impact that is rooted in their passion and purpose.

This role of teacher and leader seems pre-ordained as Sabina's past career saw her teaching high school students on the south side of Chicago and then designing educational curriculum for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  Upon moving to New York City after deeming a "New York Chapter" a necessity, she began a career in public relations and within a year she branched out on her own and started Red Branch Public Relations, a successful and respected PR and social media agency specializing in start-ups, experts and small businesses.  In 2012 she co-founded Tin Shingle (www.TinShingle.com) an online education platform and community that reaches and motivates business owners from New York to Los Angeles, Mexico to the United Kingdom on all things buzz building, from social media to public relations to online marketing.

In 2014, inspired by her own experiences and challenges, she launched Sabina Knows where she continues to educate and motivate business owners and experts to do what they love for a living, share it with the world and create an awesome life while they do. This fall 2015 she will launch Press for Success via this platform, a PR Master Course for experts hoping to use public relations to tell their story, share their expertise and grow their business. The common thread throughout Sabina’s career has been her desire to make success and professional independence accessible to all she teaches and reaches.   Sabina also serves as a contributing writer for AllBusiness.com and is a regularly featured media expert in outlets including USA Today, The Huffington Post, Fox Business News, ABC News, NBC News, Shape Magazine, More Magazine, Better TV and Forbes. Sabina lives with her husband in Brooklyn, New York.

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