How To Become a Huffington Post Blogger

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November 26, 2014 • Branding, How To

Find an editor who likes your pitch, accepts your finished story and signs you up for a blogger account.

Have you always wanted to blog on the Huffington Post and share content with a larger audience that you aren’t able to reach using your own platform?

Many people think that it’s hard to start blogging for Huffington Post, but that really is NOT true at all.

This is the formula I used to become a Huffington Post blogger (and one you can use to start blogging , too.)

I’ll repeat it here:

  1. Find an editor who likes your pitch
  2. Have that same editor “accept” your final story
  3. Have said editor sign you up for a blogger account (and send you your log-in information)
  4. Submit content!

In a nutshell…once all these things are done, you are officially a Huffington Post blogger!

Here are 6 steps that you can use to become a Huffington Post blogger:

I used these tips to get my first blog post “Black Men at Princeton Share Their Experiences” published. This story eventually caught the eyes of a news producers and landed me on FOX 5 Good Day New York.

P.S- THESE TIPS REALLY WORK. READ THIS:

I was surprised how easily the steps Rana gave me worked. Prior to our meeting, I would have never known how to go about introducing myself to the editors of Huffington Post. After speaking with Rana I felt more confident in my pitch based on the tips that she gave me! Shortly after sending over my writing samples, the editors responded back to me and I was able to get my very first HuffPo Blog post up the very next day!  -Bryhana Moore (published freelance writer & journalist)

1. Have an appealing story.

For a few weeks, I had been researching and drafting a story on the experiences of Black men at Princeton. I had compiled interviews from several students and alumni and was working on editing their responses into essay format. I knew this topic was one that would interest and resonate with a lot of people so I wanted to share it on a platform (beyond my personal blog) that would reach people who also cared about the topics of race, gender, and higher education.

I also had some credibility as I had previously posted a similar story about Black women in the Ivy League on the site MadameNoire.

2. Find the appropriate section (and editor) to pitch to.

The person who has the final say on approving your blog to the site will be a section editor, so it’s important that you connect with someone directly. The best way to find who you need to send your pitch to will be by visiting the site masthead. Click here to visit the masthead and see the COMPLETE list of editorial staff. Note, use their names to figure out their emails. Huffington post emails normally follow the format FIRSTNAME.LASTNAME@HUFFINGTONPOST.COM.

TIP: Think strategically about who you pitch to. Know the type of content that is usually appealing on each section vertical. Who will your content resonate the most with? What kinds of stories are lacking? What perspective can you add?Which editor will most likely respond to you? (This may be very important if it’s your first pitch.) In the beginning , I pitched the  Huffington Post Black Voices editor about twice with no response. I decided that the story might also be pertinent to the College section, so I emailed the editor there AND got a response!

You can also submit pitches here using this online form on the Huffington Post Contact us page.

3. Pitch the editor.

When pitching an editor, make sure to include the following:

  • Catchy subject line with the words: SUBMISSION PITCH
  • Who you are
  • What you want to write about
  • How your story is appealing/provides an interesting perspective
  • Links to your writing portfolio (or site)

Here’s the actual letter that I wrote to the editor of the college section:

Subject: SUBMISSION PITCH: “Oh to be Young, Gifted, and Black”: Men of Color at Princeton/Ivy League Share their Experiences

Hi (Editor’s Name),

I have a pitch that I think would be a great fit for the College section!
I am currently writing a piece on young men of color’s experiences in the Ivy League. I spoke to several men who shared their stories with me and am complying them into a journal-based piece that I like Huff Post’s readers would really enjoy. The topics the men discuss include feelings on sexuality, acceptance, self-discovery, worthiness,  loneliness, otherness, racism, and more. 
I think a piece on how men of color in the Ivy League feel would be relevant especially due to the media attention black male Ivy League acceptances has been getting of recent. How does it really feel to be a man of color? What will these men (if they choose Ivies) possible experience? My story will  a personal insight and reflection straight from men who have (or are) currently students. 
Would you be interested in running the story? If so, I’d love to talk to you more about this.
Here is another story that I wrote for Madame Noire about black women in the Ivy League that can give you a sense of my writing style. 
Looking to hear from you soon, 
Rana

4. Wait for a response.

Give the editor a few days. See if he/she responds. If she/he doesn’t, follow up. If the follow-up fails, find someone else to pitch! You may have to spin the pitch to fit in with the new section’s theme.

5. Deliver the content according to the parameters set by the editor.

One of the main problems with my original story was that it was way too long. The college editor told me specifically to keep the post under 1,000 words. It was a struggle, but I worked to cut the Huffington Post version of the story down to about 1,000 words. I then added a link to the “full version” at the end of the article. (This is also a great way to lead visitors to your personal blog and build the amount of credible external sites that link back to your blog.)

Also, make sure to also send the editor a headshot and short bio. (This will be used when creating a blogger profile for your blogger account.) If you send this stuff all at one, it will show that you are on top of your shit.

6. Get signed up for a Huffington Post blogger account.

Once the editor accepts your story, you’ll be signed up for a Huffington Post Blogger account. This is where you can upload and pitch subsequent stories to any of the Huffington Post verticals. More than likely, they’ll add the first story for you, but from now on, this will be your blogging play ground.

Download your FREE ” How To Be A Huffington Post Blogger” Guide + Checklist now!

NOTE: Huffington post bloggers are not paid. However, this is a great way to start developing your online digital presence. 

 Extra Tips:

  1. It may take some time for you to get an editor to respond. Don’t give up. Keep pitching. Pitch to more editors within the same vertical. Just don’t become annoying to any one specific person.
  2. Once you have a blogger account set up, you can submit articles/posts every day (or more) if you want. You have access to submitting to any of the many verticals on the site. Within 24 hours, you’ll receive notice if your post was accepted.
  3. Posts that you submit to Huffington Post do NOT have to be original content. Do you have a post that went viral on your personal blog? Why not submit it to Huffington Post? It might just go viral there too!
  4. Write QUALITY content. Your subsequent posts won’t get accepted if they’re trash or lack substance.
  5. Make sure to include an author byline at the end of each post. You’ll want to have:
    • Short bio
    • Link to your personal blog (or site)
    • Links to your social media

Was this useful? Have more questions? COMMENT and I’ll be sure to get back to you!

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Rana Campbell is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Ranacampbell.com, a site dedicated to personal branding and helping people learn how to SHINE in their personal and professional lives.

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  • Amina

    Thanks Rana, this is very helpful!!!

  • C.D. Beatrice Clay

    I love a good step-by-step plan.Thanks for sharing this. I will keep you posted on my results.

  • Great post Rana!

    I just found your blog, and am really digging your Brandmaker series! The topic of personal branding is definitely in need of some expertise like yours. I also write on branding, but focused on the small business side. Guess that makes us neighbors 😉

    I wonder if there are any ways to increase the likelihood the editor will notice your submission. For example, what if before you submitted the article, you followed the editor on twitter, retweeted/responded to a few of her tweets, etc. Perhaps even tweet to her that you have a post that would be “perfect for her platform”… all before actually submitting. Seems like if she knew our name first, then that would help our submission stand out. What do you think?

    Thanks for the great tutorial!

    Seth Addison
    http://www.sethaddison.com/blog

    • Thanks, Seth! I think that is actually a great tip. Getting on an editor or writer’s radar beforehand can help. The key would be to make it “genuine.” Favorite and tweet things that generally pique your interest. Also, going to networking events where their may be editors present can be another tool for getting on the radar.

      I hope this helps. Feel free to reach out if you have any more questions.

  • MsCareyLee

    Thanks for sharing, I find this post quite useful especially for the fact that I am considering to become a regular contributor for Huffingtonpost. Love the step-by-step plan!

    Xx

  • Elvis Williams

    hi Rana!
    If you think it, it will come. I had be entertaining thoughts of how to submits posts to HP since last year. Your very informative post here is somewhat prophetic. However, I have a new caregiving blog which I began this year. Would I confuse my would be brand if I wrote on topics outside of healthcare issues? Thanks so much for sharing such great info.

    • Hi Elvis! Thanks for reading. I don’t think that you would confuse your brand if you submit a post that is out of side healthcare. The most important thing is to write about something that is of interest. That may be able to drive readers back to your site/research who you are. Sometimes it’s best to play around and see what works best.

      • Elvis Williams

        Great! Thanks to you, I now have a little more confidence in submitting an article to them. I already subscribed to your site today. Wish me luck…

  • WHOA. Rana, I had no idea posts didn’t have to necessarily be original for HuffPost. Thanks for sharing your experiences. I found you today because an article idea randomly popped into my head this afternoon for HuffPost BlackVoices. Specifically. I began writing it immediately and it has flowed like living water.

    I’d looked into how to write for HuffPost a few weeks back, but now I’m following the call with this more specific mission in mind. Again, thanks for your insight… and see you soon on HuffPost. ;}

    • Hi! How did it go? Were you able to get published?

      • Hi Rana, sorry for the delay. No, I began to pursue other outlets shortly after, upon realizing that they weren’t the correct venue for what I wanted to write about. Then my dad became very ill and passed (just had his memorial service Saturday), so these and other plans have been quite delayed.

        I may still submit to HuffPost at some point, but my market isn’t really a fit for their audience and vice versa. As I get back into the swing of things, I’ll be submitting to other, more fitting outlets. :}

        Thank you for checking.

        • So sorry to hear about your dad! Please keep in touch and let me know how things pan out. Wishing you the best!

  • laurazera

    This post was very helpful, Rana. Thank you so much for sharing the information in a clear and concise way!

    • Glad it was helpful, Laura. Let me know if you were able to get published.

  • Thank you for this. It’s very helpful. 🙂 I’ll give you a heads up if or when I get published in the Huffington Post!

  • Christopher Clark

    Hi Rana. Just wanted to say thank you for this. I followed your advice, heard back from the editor in question within an hour or two and have now set up my blogger profile. Very quick turnaround. Very happy. Cheers

    • Hi Christopher,

      I am so happy to hear this congrats and best of luck!!! Keep me updated if you have any questions.

  • Hi Rana, Wanted you to know that your advice worked! I will be subscribing to your blog.
    -Dominique

  • Great tips. Thanks so much Rana.

  • Julia

    Dear Rana. Thank you for this article. I recently became a HuffPost blogger. I actually sent an article directly to Arianna Huffington, and she emailed me back within a day and enthusiastically asked me to come aboard. Like you, I have my own blogger account, and I have started submitted articles, which they always publish but so far not prominently on a featured page. One of the articles went viral on Facebook via my website, but since it wasn’t featured on a main page by HuffPost and since they didn’t take my helpful tags, it’s not easy to find on HuffPost (or via search engines) itself and I doubt it got much readership from them. So, my question to you is are you getting featured treatment and, if so, how? I’m a seasoned journalist, and I know I’m submitting good work to them. I just wonder how long or what it will take to get real exposure on HuffPost. I’m beginning to feel it’s not worth sending my work to them, since the only reason I’m doing it as an unpaid blogger is the exposure. Thanks for any help you can offer.

  • Thanks for these tips!

  • Shantanu NM

    Hello Mrs Campbell,

    I happen to come to your post through this website : http://huffingtonpostaccount.com/ . They included your link in their resources. Are you some how associated with them? They get Account on Huffingtonpost within 2 weeks time. How they do it?