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Issue #333: One of My Most Potent Marketing Techniques
November 30, 2020
|Greetings Fellow Travel Writers!
. . . and WELCOME all new subscribers. Thanks for joining us.
TheWriteLife.com publishes an annual 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2021 and I’d like to see PitchTravelWrite on this list. We made their 2020 list thanks to the 30+ nominations that our supporters made! We had more nominations than any other website!
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Here's a link to the nomination page:
2. Scroll to the bottom of the page, make your nomination, and briefly explain why & how PitchTravelWrite has helped you.
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It will take only two minutes – and will be very much appreciated!
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Once again, here’s the link to the nominations page: TheWriteLife Nominations Page
Editorial: One of My Most Potent Marketing TechniquesThose of you who have studied my eBooks and newsletters understand that there is far more to travel writing success than just doing one task well.
Getting your stories published, and getting paid for your work, is really due to getting a combination of things right.
One of these techniques has always seemed like common sense to me. But when I talk shop with my travel writing peers, it appears that they overlook this most obvious thing.
Here’s an example. I receive this question periodically from writers: “Roy, how can I draft a detailed query letter about a place and pitch stories about a destination without even having gone there first?”
Here's My Marketing Technique
I research my destinations extensively before I travel. Every. Single. Time.
I’ve pre-sold hundreds of articles about the attractions at my planned destination. This has added up to tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of advance assignments.
I’ll often spend a couple of hours, or more, researching attractions and potential story topics before I compose my query letters.
Then, I send off my detailed query letters, and wait for the assignments to roll into my inbox. This has worked every time I’ve traveled to any U.S. or overseas destination. I usually round up several assignments, in advance, like this.
I’ll sometimes spend a whole day researching my destination. Doing preliminary research greatly boosts your chances that an editor will buy your story.
I’ve always thought this was standard practice in freelance writing, but when I tell my veteran travel writer friends about this, I usually just get blank looks. This may explain their low publication rates (25% - 40%) compared with my success rate of 90%.
Here’s what you should research about your destination:
You’re looking for little known, highly interesting information, and hard-to-find statistics about the country or city or area you’re planning on visiting.
Using these juicy facts in your query letter shows the editor that you’re prepared. This is especially handy when you’re just starting out on your travel writing career and don’t have many bylines to your name. Providing noteworthy facts and figures and statistics builds credibility.
Even for experienced writers, providing fascinating details shows the editor that you know what you’re talking about and that you can write something appealing for their readers.
Researching your topic will also pay off later when you write your story. Once you get the assignment, you’ll already have your rough notes and a few paragraphs of your story already written. It just becomes a matter of seamlessly integrating your information into your story. Many of my shorter articles have been written almost entirely from my query letters and preliminary research.
There are many resources where you can do your research.
Use the Internet and guidebooks to research your topics. I also use my local bookstore and library to gather information. But remember, what you find on the web may not always be correct. Be sure to check your data from a couple of reputable sources before you accept it as the gospel truth.
Researching your destinations positions you as an expert on the topic and shows that you’re qualified to write the piece. This can make or break your pitch.
Here’s an article with further details about successfully pitching story ideas to editors: Troubleshooting Guide : "Why Can't I Sell My Articles?"
This Week's Featured Post
Getting to the Start Line and Taking Your First StepsIf you love the idea of calling yourself a travel writer, visiting exotic places, getting VIP treatment at luxury resorts, and writing about your experiences, you have to get your work published.
But taking those first steps on your travel writing journey can feel scary. I get it. That’s where I was fourteen years ago. I told my wife I wanted to be a travel writer, but I didn’t have a clue how to go about doing it. Somehow, I had to figure out how to move forward and get published. And I was in my fifties – was I crazy? What was I thinking?
Remembering another time in my life, many years ago, helped me move forward . . .
Upcoming PostsDec 7: Take Our Travel Writing Quiz to See If You Have What It Takes to Succeed
Dec 14: Five Errors That Will Keep You From Success
Jan 4, 2021: The Bright Side of Rejection Letters
PitchTravelWrite.com Success Stories
Candi Licence and Her Travel Writing Success Story“I fell into travel writing by accident”, writes Candi Licence. “My husband and I retired at the end of 2013, sold most of our stuff, stored our precious things like art and family heirlooms, and began traveling full time.
We’d go to places we always wanted to see, stay for 3 months and then move on to our next adventure. I started a blog to let people know where we were and what we were doing, and I got feedback from people I trusted that they loved my writing. Writing about our adventures was intoxicating and getting complimented was exhilarating.
Fast forward 3 years, and I attended a travel writing workshop to see if it was possible for me to become a travel writer. I drafted an article during the workshop, and it got a great reception from participants and an editor who was coaching aspiring writers throughout the event. I left the workshop fired up, with stars in my eyes.
Once home, tried to sell the article and learned my first hard lesson. It’s hard for beginners to place a completed article. (Always pitch first, I later learned.)
The second lesson I learned is that you can’t submit queries to one editor at a time — it’s a complete waste of time. I’d wait a month, get no response and then send my query out to the next editor with the same result. I was spinning my wheels and getting nowhere.
I was frustrated. I thought I had the talent to be a good writer but didn’t know how to break into the field.
That’s when I saw Roy Stevenson’s Marketing Master Class for Travel Writers. I signed up, took the workshop, and it changed everything for me.”
Here’s the rest of Candi Licence’s impressive travel writing success story.
Pitch Travel Write: Most Requested Links about Writing in Diverse Genres
Should You Write in Diverse Genres or Specialize?
I think you should write in as many genres as you can. If I had limited myself to just one genre, I wouldn't have had anywhere near as much success. In fact, I’m known for having my travel stories published in diverse genres.
Although you’ll obviously pitch and sell more stories about your interests and passions, you should always strive to get your stories published in as many different genres and types of magazines as you can.
Writing in multiple genres expands your writing envelope and prevents you getting bored with one subject.
When you increase the number of genres you write in, your potential market increases exponentially. And financially you’ll be better off because it’s easier to sell more stories when you’re writing in multiple genres.
Here's some of our most popular articles about this subject from our website, www.PitchTravelWrite.com.
Inspirational Travel Quote
RESOURCES FOR TRAVEL WRITERS
Featured Book: HOW TO BREAK INTO THE LUXURY TRAVEL WRITING MARKET
A HANDBOOK FOR TRAVEL WRITERS
Would you like to stay at luxury resorts, villas, and lodges—for free?
How about being treated like royalty in high-end resorts?
Would you enjoy personalized tours with your own guide and driver?
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My 12-chapter, 130-page manual will walk you, step-by-step, through the luxury travel writing process. You’ll learn how to get luxury travel assignments and leverage them to land luxury travel trips. I’ve used these techniques to land assignments at dozens of the finest luxury resorts and spas in the world.
This manual contains an up-to-date list of 150+ print magazines and travel websites that publish luxury travel articles. It’s the most
comprehensive list of luxury magazine outlets you’ll find ANYWHERE. Having immediate access to these lists alone is worth the price of the eBook, saving you hundreds of hours of research.
Group Coaching Mastermind CommunityOur Group Coaching Mastermind Community kicked off on October 1st and we’ve got a global group with members living in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Vietnam and the U.S. We're very excited about this group of writers and our new community!
Last week we studied "How to Write a Compelling Beginning to Your Travel Story" and this week we'll be discussing my Marketing Mastery system and how it works.
If you missed out on the opportunity to join this session, you can get on our no-obligation interest list for the next session starting in January.
Be among the first to hear when we re-open registration in early 2021. Learn more about what’s included and sign up for the interest list here . . .
Live WorkshopsPeople have been asking when our 2021 workshops in New Orleans, Louisiana are scheduled.
Here are the 2021 dates:
We've had lots of interest already. You can sign up for our no-obligation interest list for these workshops and receive our substantial early bird discounts when we open registration:
Did You Know . . .Our Complete Marketing Master Class for Travel Writers is ranked #1 on TravelWritersExchange.com’s Top Ten Travel Writing Workshops.
You can access the list of the top ten travel writing workshops at the link below . . .
At Your Service
If you know someone who will enjoy this newsletter,
PitchTravelWrite.com, is our information-packed website for travel writers. This e-zine, a series of travel writing books and reference guides, coaching programs, and our workshops all work together to give you guidance in this field.
Our aim is to provide you with practical, nitty gritty information to help you gain entry into the travel writing realm and all the enjoyment that comes with it.
You can see the entire list by visiting their website - click on the graphic to view the list now.
Friend me on FacebookMy Facebook page is about freelance travel writing. I frequently post about:
• links to other well produced travel websites and blogs
• links to my travel articles
• magazine cover stories and back stories
• links to resource pages
• links to coaching and mentoring resources
. . .and plenty of other useful information to get you up to speed
That's all for now. Until next week - just keep pitching! Roy
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