Now that you have an idea of your topic and its treatment, you must decide where you will send your article for possible publication. You may even want to do this before you begin to write, since all publications have a unique format, content, and writing style.
To begin your data base for media contacts, consider the following action strategies.
Collect and read publications in your field of expertise. Be sure to note the publication’s address and other contact information. Note the writing style, length of articles, and other issues. Consider the audience. Write to the publication to request writer’s guidelines for submission, as well as a publication schedule indicating deadlines as well as emphasis for certain publications (for example, HRMagazine regularly has an issue with a focus on recruitment).
Meet contacts at trade fairs and exhibits. Look for magazine, newsletter, and journals exhibiting at conventions and trade fairs. On off-peak hours (when the show is slow and the exhibitors are not busy speaking with potential customers) approach the booth to determine if they are looking for authors (most are), and request additional information (get a copy of the publication, the business card and writer’s guidelines). For example, I have found the Society for Human Resource Management Annual Conference Exhibition to be an excellent resource for identifying potential magazines within my field, and as a result, have had articles published by many magazines.
Seek out editors and reporters at conferences when you attend. In my first year in business, I spoke at an industry human resources conference, and at dinner, exchanged business cards with the gentleman sitting to my left. I learned that he was an editor for their monthly newsletter, and asked him if he was looking for writers/columnists. He said yes, and for over six years I wrote a regular column for this publication, gaining me added visibility and credibility.
Accept media interviews. When attending or speaking at association conferences and workshop programs, make yourself available to editors and writers. Not only can this provide you with great quotes in prominent publications, but can open the door to writing for this publication.