Are You Worried About How To Make A “Pitch” To An Influential Blogger?

make a pitch

“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”  Dale Carnegie

Have you ever “pitched” a request to a top blogger?

Have you asked for a guest post? 

Or for them to share a piece of your content?

Well, that's what I asked these top bloggers: “What is the most memorable pitch you've ever received?”

Here are their answers:

Mike Alton

Mike Alton

Website
Twitter

Interestingly, the most memorable pitch that I've ever received was from a blogger for whom I had already published one or more posts. James Scherer from Wishpond emailed me and said, “Yes, I'm very aware you wrote an article entitled ‘Why you Should Opt Out of Facebook Ads' a couple months ago. This article mentions that fact, and then gives a few ways to combat the legitimately terrible organic reach you quoted, as well as the two ways I think Facebook Ads can be used successfully.  At least take a look :)”

And he opened the guest post itself perfectly. He says:

One of the most popular articles on TheSocialMediaHat in 2013 was entitled ‘Why You Should Opt Out of Facebook Ads’. I thought it worth taking another look for 2014. Yes, that article was written by Mr. Mike Allton himself, so this may be the worst guest contribution idea imaginable.

Needless to say, I published the article. James is an excellent blogger and researcher and stated his case perfectly.

Luke Jordan

Luke Jordan

Website
Twitter

“When it comes to pitches, I'm typically the pitcher and not the ‘pitchee', so I thought it would be interesting to look at this from the other point of view. 

As well as trying to promote my content on a regular basis, my job in SEO and online marketing means I'm constantly trying to promote the work of others also. If content is fun, which more often than not it is, it gives me the chance to try to be memorable in my pitch. There are a couple of pitches that I'm particularly proud of. 

I wrote to a website called f***inghomepage.com in the style that they promote content. My subject line was all in capitals and included swearing, whilst the email literally just said something like “I thought you'd like this on your site” with a link to the content I was promoting, whilst it was addressed to the site editor. Within a week or so they'd featured the content I was promoting, which sent a few thousand referrals in just one day. 

I'm also really happy with my Comment Collection outreach emails. Whilst they aren't the most unusual in their form, the idea is what's unique and it means that I manage to get really high reply and success rates.”

Donna Merrill

Donna Merrill

Twitter

I don't really read pitches too often.  In fact, most of them are filtered directly into the trash, so that I don't even have to see them.

That only happens after I've already identified a sender as a source of unsolicited (and unwanted) pitches.

One pitch, though, that actually got my attention was from someone I did not know at all.

The subject that got me to open was: “Thanks for your help, Donna.  I really appreciate it.”

I didn't recognize the name, but my curiosity was piqued.

The body of the email was essentially this.

“Thanks for the wonderful blog post you wrote titled ‘xyz.' I was so happy to hear how important images are in online content, because guess what?  I actually create image packages for bloggers to use.  I'd love to write a guest post for your blog, in which I expand on this, and give your readers some really cool tips about using images.  You can edit it, of course, any way you  want and NO… it doesn't pitch me.  I'm happy just to meet your readers, and give them some great advice like you always do.  I appreciate what you do and would love to be a little part of that.”

That was the gist of it anyway.  I put it in quotes, but it's only a paraphrase from my recollection.

It was a great pitch that still stands out in my mind because it was framed as a thank you, as an appreciation of what I do, and as a request to be part of that.  It clearly stated it was not intended as a pitch, although, it was of course.  Just not a blatant one.

As a business person, I always like to see a good pitch, especially when it it's subtle and non-imposing.

I actually did NOT have this person submit a guest post because I do so little of that, and his topic is not real congruent with the focus of my blog.  He does, however, comment on my blog from time to time, and I… of course… reciprocate by commenting on his.

Marianne Manthey

Marianne Manthey

Website
Twitter

Strangely enough, my most memorable pitch was from Dre Beltrami at The Branded Solopreneur! I didn’t know her that well at the time but because of the wording she used, I fell in love with her right away! Here's how she began her pitch: 

“I'm Dre from The Branded Solopreneur. Big ass high five for adding me on twitter! I know you're one busy lady so it might be a long shot, but I wanted to see if you'd be interested in contributing to a new roundup style post I'm putting together called, ‘Must Have Tools That Social Royalty Use To Stand Out Online'.”

First of all, Social Royalty: me? Flattery gets you everywhere! How could I say no to that? 

Ryan Biddulph

Ryan Biddulph

Website
Twitter

No one pitch stands out per se but I do remember every one where folks: mention my name, mention a recent post, comment on the recent post (via the email itself, and on the post), and, if they are polite, kind and give with no strings attached. Sure they are asking for something but if they make it cool, if I am too busy for the request, or if I am not a match, then I am impressed. AND….if they ask me, how they can help me, no matter if I say yes or no, wow, then I am in.

Example; I've promoted one of my recent eBooks, asking folks for reviews. I state that if they can do it, great. If not, no problems. Then I cap it off with a question: how can I help you? The ball is in their court, meaning, since I leave the email with the query, more often than not folks will ask something of me. Yes, they will usually do the review if they take me up on my request, LOL, but honestly, I ask to help, to help, because I enjoy it.

Folks who take that tact always open my eyes, and make me do a double take.

T.E. Hanna

Thoma E. Hanna

Website
Twitter

The best pitch I have ever received easily comes from Andrea Beltrami of the Branded Solopreneur. To date, she is the only person that I have published on my site as a guest author, and her pitch went something like this: 

“Hey Thomas, you want to write a guest article for my site? I have a great idea I'd love for you to write about.”

“Sure Andrea! That would be great. Would you like to write one for mine as well? I love your stuff.”

You bet, Thomas!”

“Epic.”

So why was this the best pitch I've ever received, and why did this earn Andrea a guest article when I've turned down every other pitch that has come my way? The answer is simple: it wasn't the pitch at all. Andrea had already spent time building a relationship with me, we had collaborated on previous projects, and I was familiar with the quality of her work. By the time she brought up guest writing, I didn't even hesitate to invite her onto my site. In fact, she didn't even ask to write for me. I asked her, because Andrea had already earned my trust.

That's the most critical lesson I can give to any blogger. Pitches are helpful, but the more time you spend building relationships with others in your niche, the less important a perfect pitch becomes. Doors open when people trust you and trust the caliber of your work.

So how do you land a perfect pitch? Build trust. Build relationships. Relationships are the perfect pitch.

Amy Lynn Andrews

Amy Lynn Andrews

Website
Twitter

One pitch that stands out was a podcast interview request from Lisa Morosky.

Her email consisted of just three short paragraphs, but they were packed with excellent information.  She provided everything I needed to make an informed decision without having to email back and forth multiple times.

Paragraph one was two lines. She told me she bought my ebook and read it. She briefly mentioned specific things she appreciated about it. I was immediately impressed. Not only did she take the time to become familiar with me, she also invested her own money. This spoke volumes.

Paragraph two was three sentences. She mentioned the overall direction of her project and asked if I would join her on her podcast. She told me the two main topics she wanted to talk about and a few ideas for subtopics.

Paragraph three was also three sentences. She told me how long she anticipated the chat to be and assured me she wanted to work around my schedule. She gave me two options for recording (Skype or a conference call service) and assured me she’d send specific questions ahead of time. She even told me how far in advance I would receive the questions. She also made it clear that she was open to me suggesting topics as well. 

It was easy to agree to join her. Her thoroughness and attention to detail continued through the recording date as well as the publish date. She was great.

Andrea Beltrami

Andrea Beltrami

Website
Twitter

The best blogger pitch I've ever gotten was from Thomas E. Hanna, who approached me about being a beta tester for his new course.

The pitch was fantastic for several reason including:

  • He private messaged on a social profile I was incredibly active on, instead of email
  • He had done his research and knew exactly how I would benefit from his course
  • He had all the beta testing details lined out so I knew what I would be getting out of it
  • He made sure there was 4x's the value I would get them him, making it a no-brainer

Thomas approached me in my style, informal that is, and was very conversational. To the point where he was genuinely asking a question not hard selling his course. The best pitch really is one that doesn't feel like a pitch at all!

Combine that with that fact that he followed all of that up by delivering more than he promised, and not surprisingly I left a raving fan.

These days Thomas has become one of my BEST blogging homedogs, which is proof that approaching people in genuine and real ways and offering a helping hand, free of expectations, can lead to extremely tight bonds and bigger things down the road. 

Dan Western

Dan Western

Website
Twitter

Good pitches from other bloggers aren’t as common as they should be. There are too many times where I receive a one line email with grammar mistakes, that doesn’t come across as friendly and inviting. However, there’s one pitch I distinctly remember from the pile of emails.

This pitch reminded me of something I’d seen in a cartoon a year or so ago, where somebody was trying to sell their T.V show to a group of advertisers. The sentences were short, powerful and straight to the point.

A blogger contacted me asking if he could write a guest post for my website, and the first time around he was incredibly friendly and enthusiastic. The problem was that the article wasn’t quite clear enough to publish so I sent it back to him and gave him some feedback, to which he sent the best response I’ve ever had when giving constructive feedback to someone.

Here’s the part of his email that I was drawn to:

“Anyway, the piece was rejected. It was confusing. It didn't fit the mold of your site. To be frank, it sucked. Guess what? I don't give up that easily! If anything, that's what your website teaches! That's why I'm always reading.”

When I read this is wasn’t quite like reading an email. It was as if he was telling me it in person and I could hear exactly how he was saying it.

The lesson? Enthusiasm is easily remembered.

Carol Amato

Carol Amato

Website
Twitter

The most memorable pitch I’ve ever received from a blogger was from Barry Moore over at The Active Marketer.

He told me about ActiveCampaign, but I was extremely skeptical because I’d been a staunch AWeber gal for over 4 years, and thought: “If it ain't broke, don't fix it~!”

However, I was beginning to realize that if I wanted to be able to design, automate and scale my business, I’d have to step up and embrace a better technology – the power tools the ‘Big' boys use like Ontraport, Infusionsoft and ActiveCampaign.

I had previously checked into Ontraport and Infusionsoft, and they were expensive, and I decided they were not for me.

Barry thoroughly explained the features and benefits of ActiveCampaign, and I was impressed. He also offered a Udemy course on how to use ActiveCampaign, so I took a leap of faith and invested in this awesome software (starts at $9/month).

I most definitely believe it’s the best decision I’ve made since starting my online business. ????

What a powerful solution to getting the right message, to the rightcustomer ? at the right time!

Having the power to allow the subscriber to “self-select” what they want to receive from you is like a dream come true for an online marketer.

I was so thrilled with what I was finding inside ActiveCampaign, that I felt like shouting from the rooftops so that all would try it like I had!

So, I did the next best thing – I had Barry write a guest article for my blog titled: “Why I SwitchedFrom AWeber to ActiveCampaign.” He answered many questions and caused me to solidify my belief and become a promoter as well. 

Now that's doing a great job on a pitch!

[spacer height=”20px”

Tor Refsland

Tor Refsland

Website
Twitter

I got an email from another blogger asking me to sign up for his / her email list.

As in ANY area, begging and desperation is a total TURN OFF.

That person was obviously SLEEPING in class when the subject “How To Natural Attract The Right Subcribers” got covered.

Getting traffic to your blog and subscribers to your email list are all about attracting the right clients.

By begging, you will REPEL potential subscribers and RUIN your own brand.

Imagine this…

You are single and a stranger appears from nowhere starting to BEG you to go on a date.

It doesn`t matter if that person was good looking…

HECK, it wouldn`t matter if that person was the best person in the whole world and had saved 10 small kittens from drowning…

Because your WACKO-alert would start screaming, right?

And for a good reason.

 

Comments

  1. says

    Hi Sue,

    Loving the responses and thanks for adding my take!

    I see this theme: make friends with someone. Support them. Then, when you ask a friend, or if a friend asks you for an opportunity to guest post, or to interview, or whatever, both parties will vibe with the pitch or ask more often than not. It’s quite easy and simple really if you’ll just make friends, build that bond and yes, do not be afraid to ask….because if you’re friends with someone you’ll have a darn good idea that they will say Yes anyway, right?

    Even if they say No, it’s NO Problem! when they are a good friend and that’s how I address my emails, and that’s the view I take of the pitch deal.

    As for when I am pitched, note my name, and a recent post, show that you care about me enough to research me, and I am all ears. Even if my ears are quick small hahahha….

    Ryan
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted…Download this Free eBook (about Terrifying Roaches and Successful Blogging?)My Profile

    • says

      I SO appreciate you lending your voice to the post, Ryan! We have to take care of our blogger outreach sources and protect them by just sharing our very best.

      Thanks again for the answer and the comment.
      Sue

  2. says

    I also do lot of blogger outreach but fall short of new ideas to send my pitch. This article gave me new and unique ideas. Sue, I am a huge fan of your blog and always wait for your new posts. Thanks for the awesome post.

    Keep up the good work!
    Dina recently posted…Is E-commerce Forcing the Shift to Mobile?My Profile

    • says

      Dina, I SO appreciate you being a loyal Successful Blogging Team member!

      I’m so glad I could help out with this one. Send those pitches – 10 a month to start.

      How about you email or FB me when you send 5? 2 weeks from now!
      Sue

  3. says

    Now you’ve got me inspired! I hadn’t thought of other angles for pitches such as pitching to get a contribution for a roundup post.

    • says

      Oh, Cathy,

      A whole new world is not opened to you! I’ll start it off by asking you to contribute to my June roundup post.

      Thanks and I’ll email you soon about it.
      Sue

  4. says

    This is a wonderful way of getting the idea or how to pitch our thoughts to another blogger to publish in their blog.

    I have kept few bookmarks from this post and will tell you my experiences after thoroughly learning from these.

    Mohinder Paul Verma
    BloggingFunda – A Community of Bloggers

    • says

      Hi, Mohinder,

      Thanks for your comment and let me know how it goes after you try some of the ideas!

      Sue

  5. says

    It appears one should just be open and honest to whom they are pitching to. As well, it seems silly to be pitching to someone you know nothing about or have never even read any of their articles. Some helpful tips from the top!
    Robert recently posted…Mystery Island VanuatuMy Profile

    • says

      So true, Robert! It is key to build the relationship first.

      Thanks for commenting today!
      Sue

  6. says

    Excellent insights, Sue! As a blogger, I tend to pay the most attention to popular tools that are directed right at me — like pitch templates. I found this roundup particularly useful because it helped me see the effect I can have when I pitch. Great perspective!

  7. says

    This is super interesting. Sounds like the most important thing to do before pitching is to build relationships. What I got out of this is: Know who you’re pitching to and be enthusiastic. Reminds me of this quote from Dale Carnegie in his book How to Win Friends and Influence People:

    “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”

    Great post thanks for sharing this

    • says

      LOVE the Dale Carnegie quote and am going to put it into the post right now, Tara!

      Thanks for your comment,
      Sue

  8. says

    Hello Sue,

    Some really interesting pitches and ideas I read from the top folks! Thank you for that! 🙂

    I never contacted and never asked anyone yet but I still believe and as Ryan summarized, that making a relationship first before asking for anything (you want to do on their place OR want them to do on your place), is strong enough – still you have to be picky enough to not go after any and every single pitches.

    And you know what? I will reference to your this blog post to make and how to pitch when I have something cooking in mind. 🙂

    Thanks once again, happy to share it!

    ~ Adeel Sami
    Adeel Sami recently posted…How These 8 Post Ideas Turn You into Blogging SuperstarMy Profile

  9. says

    This is really cool insight. I like that a wide range of successful bloggers, each with their own style, have weighed in. The overall consensus makes sense. People like to be approached as human beings. No one likes a cold, “Can you help me out?” from a random stranger. Speaking to people the way you’d like to be spoken to, and offering to work together as a team, can get you a long way.

  10. says

    Great post Sue. I really like Dan’s insight here where he highlights how the part that stood out felt like a conversation and not an email. Sometimes I find myself having almost a conversation with people through email. On the one hand email is really not the place to be going back and forth like a chat. On the other, I know it really stands out with people, especially in customer support.

    Feel free to reach out to me if you ever feature people in a round up post – happy to contribute!

    • says

      Thanks for reading and commenting today, Dave!

      By conversing through email (which you are brilliant at, by the way!), you are connecting and creating a relationship. That’s the key.

      You are on my list to ask in June for my next roundup now!
      Sue

  11. says

    Hi Sue, This post was very timely for me, as I am now launching my own freelance blogging business and one the things I will be doing is looking for blogs to pitch guest post ideas to. And the whole concept of blogger outreach is on my radar as well, and I see from these contributors that that can play a big part in just getting noticed.

    Thanks for a great, and timely, post!
    Terri Cruce recently posted…Is Social Media Marketing Worth It?My Profile

    • says

      Great, Terri. Thanks for letting me it helped you as a beginning blogger!

      I appreciate you taking the time to comment.
      Sue

  12. says

    Hi Sue,

    I loved everyone’s response to this question. May I thank you for including me in this post I sure do appreciate it.

    I would have to say one cannot pitch unless a person has signed up for your email. Then after engaging, we can make the pitch.

    The worst pitch is on Facebook. There is a way to do it that is proper, but getting those pop up messages especially from people I don’t know is just plain rude.

    I do sign up for updates on my email list because I’m interested what certain people could offer me and I will purchase. But it all comes down to being ethical. If all I get is emails telling me to buy the newest shiny object…I’m out of there lol.

    -Donna
    Donna Merrill recently posted…The Internet Marketer LifestyleMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, Donna,

      I SO agree with the fact that you have to be on an influential blogger’s list before pitching!

      You have probably seen it all with your expertise. Beginning bloggers should take heed.

      Thanks so much for participating and sharing your stories on this post and for commenting.
      Sue

  13. says

    Hi Sue,

    This post has come at a very appropriate time for me, especially since I will be submitting my first guest post on this site. Getting such an opportunity never comes easy but with time luck will come your way – if you are determined enough. That’s what I did and I’m glad that my vision came true.

    Thanks very much for a great opportunity.
    Enock Machodi recently posted…Life is a Game. Life is Short. Make it CountMy Profile

  14. says

    I read this article and thought, “Huh. I’ve never made a pitch to anyone before,” but I was wrong. All these relationships (including the one with you, Oh Great One) started with pitching Kevin Duncan over at Be A Better Blogger.

    For fun, I actually looked up the original email. It says:

    “‘Making Your Split Personality Work For You (a.k.a. Me, Myself and Them)’

    I write epic fantasy books for Upper Middle Grade. There are times I’ll write as my characters and even engage in the comments as various fictional characters just for fun.

    As a blogger, it’s a unique way for writers to gain attention, get past writers block and to have some great fun.

    If this interests you, I’d write a current article and post it on my own website, using all the points I’ll talk about, including making comments as characters. This way your readers will have a live example.

    I don’t have the idea mapped out yet–but it sounded like a fun project.”

    Not the smoothest pitch, but hey–it’s my first…and as you all know, Kevin took me up on the offer. I got to do the article as I hoped…and it’s where I met many of the readers here!

    The BIG payoff, though?

    Kevin has become a dear, dear friend.

    Doesn’t get better than that in my book.

    Hmmmm. I’m thinking maybe I should try a new pitch with someone new…even if only for fun!

    Something that’s not been done before….

    Ooooooooooo.

    Me gots an IDEA!!
    Jaime Buckley recently posted…It’s Tuesday, …so let’s talk about poop.My Profile

    • says

      LOVE this story, Jaime! You have “pitched” successfully to Kevin and to anyone you’ve ever sold a book to or an interview to or asked to read a blog post. We “pitch” all the time and don’t realize it.

      You are terrific at building online relationships. I’m glad we got to know each other from Kevin’s blog.

      Thanks for your comment today.
      Sue

  15. says

    Yes, these are all much better pitches than I’ve heard! When I think most memorable pitch, I can only remember the horrible ones. Loved the examples everyone shared.
    Kristie Hill recently posted…Summer Blog Post IdeasMy Profile

    • says

      I also tend to remember the bad ones also – thank goodness they get put directly into ‘trash’.

      I so appreciate you leaving a comment today.
      Sue

  16. says

    When it comes to build relationship in blogging community with pro bloggers, the very first thing is need to be genuine, trustworthy and honest to build relationships.

    It is really good to know from pro bloggers, what they believe is good way to build relationships in blogging community.
    Gaurav Kumar recently posted…How to Create Social Share Bar for BlogMy Profile

  17. says

    It’s so great to hear straight from the horses mouth {ooops, there’s that damn livestock comparison I always go to} what it is that makes a pitch a win. The reoccurring theme is, what else but, RELATIONSHIPS! It’s so tragic how much peeps forget that online life is no different than real life. You wouldn’t go up to a complete stranger and ask them for something, so why we think it’s ok to do that online is beyond me.

    Fantastic, grade A post , Sue! I can’t thank you enough for letting me be a part of this post.It makes my heart sing seeing two people mention my pitches…it tells me I’m on the right track and need to keep doing what I’m doing. Sometimes you need to hear those things, so THANK YOU Thomas and Marianne – you two ROCK!!

    • says

      You were all over this post today, Dre! Which means you rock at pitching because you make friends first.

      If beginning bloggers could learn that lesson, more guest posts would be published.

      Thanks so much for contributing to the Successful Blogging Team!
      Sue

  18. Megan says

    You are just awesome! Thank-you Sue!

    • says

      Hi, Keith,

      You can ask friendly colleagues to post on your site any time after you start.

      To ask bloggers that you are just starting to meet, they would like to see that you have at least 10 comments per post OR 50 social shares per post.

      That being said, they may ask you for your traffic numbers. Your best bet is to ask bloggers that have about double your traffic. As you grow, you’ll get guest post requests coming in (I get several a day). So everything gets easier the quicker you grow your traffic.

      I hope this helps! Thanks for your question.
      Sue

      • says

        Hey Sue!

        Those are good numbers to go by.

        I really like the asking bloggers who have double my traffic.

        Easier is better! 🙂

        Thanks you, Sue! =)

        Be awesome!
        Keith Breseé

  19. says

    Hi, Sue,

    I’m so excited to be a part, oh my goodness! Pure gold in this post, thanks so much for sharing and for allowing me to participate in this Roundup of awesome bloggers.

    Thanks for letting me share my perspective on the whole thing – you challenged me to decide on what it was, because prior to your invitation, I really hadn’t thought about what my favorite was.

    I just love your quote by Dale Carnegie – so very true, and super powerful. Epic post, sharing out with friends…

    Thanks again,
    Carol Amato
    Carol Amato recently posted…Carol’s Cut – Best of the Month 1My Profile

    • says

      I wish the quote was my idea, Carol – it was a wonderful reader’s idea after the post was published!

      I so appreciate you being on the blog!
      Sue

Trackbacks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge