How To Write a Pitch for an Article: Step-By-Step

Are you a freelance writer? Do you want to get better at freelance writing? If so, you might be wondering how to write a pitch for an article to get more work. 

If you want to sharpen your writing skills, you need to write as much as possible. There are a lot of hungry writers out there, and you may have to pitch ideas to someone if you want to collect more work. Regardless of whether you are a blogger, a news contributor, or even someone in academic writing, you may be required to pitch an article to collect more work.

If you have a story idea, you may need to conduct an email pitch to convince someone that your article idea is worth it. Even people who write for The New York Times have to provide writing pitches. If you want to get more writing gigs, you need to get better at article pitches to get the editor’s attention. There are several steps you need to follow to get the most out of your freelance pitch. 

1. Ask Why Someone Might Want To Read That Article

How to write a pitch for an article?

If you have something you want to write, you need to make sure people will want to read it. Otherwise, the editor probably will not be that interested in it. Therefore, you should also ask yourself why you want to write it. There are a few questions you may want to ask before you write the rest of the pitch. These include:

  • Is this a topic you are passionate about? Do you think there are other people out there who are passionate about it?
  • Is the article topic newsworthy? For example, does the article cover topics related to climate change, the economy, political unrest, or other current news issues?
  • Do you think the article is something important that people need to know about?

If you are looking for ideas for an article, you may want to look at what is trending on social media. You might also want to take a look at LinkedIn for more ideas. Know how and why you want to write that specific article. Then, ensure other people will want to read it.

2. Check the Publication To Make Sure it Fits the Theme

Even though this might seem obvious, it is easy to get lost in your pitch and forget about what the magazine is about. You probably have an idea in your head. Then, you fine-tune it as you write the rest of the pitch. Unfortunately, as you fine-tune your pitch, you may lose sight of the fact that the new article does not fit with the publication anymore.

Always take a look at the publication to make sure your pitch fits with what they write about. If you want to write about the most important tips for pregnant women, you probably don’t want to publish this in a magazine that focuses on climate change. 

3. Write a Hook in the Subject Line and Include Supporting Facts

As you put together the rest of your pitch, you need to generate a hook and supporting facts. A hook is important because it will convince someone to keep reading. You should be able to generate a strong hook in as little as one line. Provide this line with your pitch, and explain why this makes your article idea attractive. This will help you get the editor‘s attention.

Then, you need to provide supporting facts. A few examples of strong facts you may want to include with your pitch include:

  • Highlight any statistics you find from other relevant, reputable publications. Statistics are objective, and you can use them to convince the editor that your article is worth writing.
  • You may want to send links to a few studies as well. For example, if you are looking for medical studies, you should take a look at PubMed for studies you can include with the rest of your pitch.
  • Think about common mistakes and misconceptions people have. This can be helpful if you want to write an article on a timely topic. Think about how you can rectify these misconceptions with your article.
  • Think of your pitch as a case. You need to build a strong case if you want the editor to write your article. You can do this if you have a lot of supporting facts and evidence for your pitch.

Think of your pitch as a case. You need to build a strong case if you want the editor to write your article. You can do this if you have a lot of supporting facts and evidence for your pitch.

4. Write Down Your Main Points

Now that you have the evidence for your case, what are the main points of the article? You need to include this in your pitch. For example, if you are writing a personal essay, you may want to include the topic sentences of the “body” paragraphs with your pitch. While you might not be pitching a personal essay, this is how you need to think about this part of your pitch.

What are the main points you have in your article? For example, if you are writing about the top tips people need to follow for weight loss, you may want to mention the tips you will include. You don’t need to explain all of the tips in detail, but you need to mention them in your pitch. 

5. Explain Your Point of View

How to write a pitch for an article?
You could include your angle with your pitch so the editor knows where you are coming from

Your article probably has an angle or an argument you are trying to make. For example, if you want to write an article on successful dieting, your argument might be that dieting is about much more than calorie counting. You could include your angle with your pitch so the editor knows where you are coming from. A lot of publications have a specific angle or slant they want to keep. The editor may ask you to adjust or fine-tune the ankle, but you don’t want your article to be rejected simply because the editor doesn’t like your point of view.

6. Give Links To Prior Relevant Writing Samples

Even though you are pitching an idea for your article, you are also pitching yourself. Why should the editor select you to write this article? You may want to provide links to relevant writing samples. Or, you may want to attach prior writing samples. If you have an impressive portfolio of work, you should limit the samples to only those that are relevant to the type of article you are writing. 

For example, are you going to write an article on cancer? If so, you may want to provide links to other writing samples that highlight your medical prowess. 

7. Include Your Contact Information

You need to make it as easy as possible for the editor to get in touch with you. Editors are busy, and they may take your pitch and give it to someone else if you don’t respond to them as quickly as possible. Therefore, always include your contact information. This might include your email address, phone number, or even link to your social media accounts. Make sure you include contact information that you actually pay attention to. You don’t want to miss magazine editors reaching out to you. 

If you don’t hear back from the editor in a few weeks, don’t hesitate to follow up with them. You may want to include a potential deadline for the article as well. 

A Sample Pitch To an Editor

It might also be helpful to take a look at how a sample pitch to an editor might look. Here is a sample for you to consider.

Hi [insert editor name here],

Thank you for your time. I read an article recently on your site focusing on the dangers of social media as they relate to the recent election. I also saw an article posted a while back on the growing threat of climate change. Here is a pitch for you to consider.

The Dangers of Social Media Admist the Growing Threat of Climate Change

People have a tendency to believe information on the internet that echoes what they already believe, regardless of whether it is rooted in fact. This echo chamber has had a deleterious impact on our efforts to fight the growing threat of climate change, all while experts in the field are largely in agreement that human activity is responsible for the changes we see in the environment.

This piece would focus on how people are largely receiving inaccurate news because of their tendency to believe people on social media instead of efforts in the field. I would also interview one of the leading researchers on climate change as well as another expert on the impact of social media.

I have attached a few prior articles, but please let me know if you would like to see any more of my prior work. My articles have shown up on [insert prior sites here]. I could get the article back to you two weeks after the pitch is accepted.

You can reach me at this email address or my phone number here [XXX XXX XXXX]. Please feel free to contact me at any time.

Thank you for your time.

Final Word on How To Write a Pitch for an Article

There are a lot of important points you need to keep in mind if you are wondering how to write a pitch for an article. You might feel like you are writing an entire article simply by generating a pitch. On the other hand, if you follow the important steps above, you should have an easier time quickly generating pitches and becoming a freelance writer.

Do not expect every pitch to be accepted, but if you have a strategy that works, you should increase your percentage. That way, you can get more out of your time. Like this? Check out our guide to writing a story outline.

FAQs About How To Write a Pitch for an Article

What is the best way to start a proposal pitch? 

Regardless of whether you are writing an op-ed, a news story, or an academic paper, every great story starts with a strong idea. You may want to take a look at what’s trending on social media for a few pitch examples. You also need to think about the points of view of the readership when you generate a pitch for a freelance writing job.

What should I think about before I submit a pitch to an editor?

You need to follow the submission guidelines for a successful pitch. Some publications have pitch submission guidelines you need to follow. If you don’t follow the guidelines, your pitch might be rejected without anyone reading it. 

How do I go from a good pitch to an article?

Make sure you follow basic writing tips as you write your article. Keep your paragraphs short, use proper grammar, and hold the reader’s attention with your style. You might want to take a look at a few relevant clips as examples.

How do you write a 30-second elevator pitch?

Summarize The Key Points That You Want To Cover. Distill Your Idea To Its Essentials. Ideally, These Points Are Of Benefit To Benefit To The Reader Or Listener. Record And Time Yourself Delivering This Pitch. Remember, Brevity Breeds Clarity.