4 Ways to Diversify Your Submissions Strategy

April 24, 2018

In light of the recent news about Style Me Pretty potentially closing, there have been a lot of conversations about the future of publications and how to manage your earned media strategy. To set the record straight, publications aren’t going anywhere! That being said, the industry is always changing, so you want to make sure that you aren’t putting all your submission eggs in one basket. Just like you would never invest all your personal finances into one individual fund; it pays to diversify! Capeesh?

Now we understand why it’s important, but how do we make it happen? Here are 4 ways to diversify your submissions strategy:

1. Make a list of your goal publications

Sure, you probably can name your top one or two goal publications off the top of your head. But did you know that there are potentially hundreds of blogs and magazines that reach your target audience? This is where is pays to do a little bit of research. Spend a bit of time searching through publication sites or reading through the publication section of the Two Bright Lights Community, making notes about which ones fit your style. Then go ahead and rate them A, B, C, and so on. Once you have a couple A’s you know that those are your go-to’s, followed by the B’s and so on. Now you have a great list to spread out your submissions.

2. Figure out how to make submission requests your best friend

At this point you probably have a decent portfolio of work to choose from. But sometimes even after the research it’s hard to figure out where to send your a certain shoot. That’s when submission requests are invaluable. Make a point every week to scroll the requests on Two Bright Lights and chances are there’s something in your portfolio that’s a perfect fit! Bonus points if it's a publication you have never submitted to.

3. Use non-exclusive publications to their full potential

While you may at first think that each event or shoot has limited life, you’d actually be surprised how much you can make each album work for you! That’s the beauty of non-exclusive publications; they are okay with receiving submissions that have already been published somewhere else. Think about it, there may be some cross over in the readers between publications, but most of the time it’s a different market. And it’s very unlikely that each publication chooses the same exact photos to feature in the post - when you’re submitting 100-150 images, there’s so much room for variety. We’ve seen single sessions get published 10-15 times. Talk about SEO power!

4. Hold a styled shoot to reach a different client group

Have you been dreaming about creating something totally different in hopes of reaching your ideal client? And maybe this new style will help you catch the attention of a new publication? That’s where creating a styled shoot and pitching it to a new publication can be a huge benefit! Gather your favorite friendors and produce an event that is just too good to pass up!

Whether you implement one or all of these strategies into your submissions workflow, be sure to continually re-evaluate shifts in both the industry and your business to make sure that your marketing remains aligned. Pretty quickly, you'll be on the road to submission rockstar status!

Written by: Meghan Brown, Manager at Two Bright Lights

Contact her at @meghan_sb or meghan@twobrightlights.com

Photo Credit: Jessica Hunt Photography 

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