Do's and Don'ts of Magazine Submissions

Image from  Atlas Magazine

Image from Atlas Magazine

We've gone over why you should submit to magazines, and now you're ready to hit send. Before you do, there are a few tips to consider to ensure the highest chance of success with your submission. Check out my handy list of do's and don'ts of magazine submissions.

Do: Review the submission guidelines

Every submissions-based magazine has a set of guidelines, typically found on their website. It is respectful to follow the submission guidelines and makes life a little easier on the editors going through the submissions.

Don't: DM the magazine's Instagram trying to submit

Few magazines accept DM submissions, so if you're planning to slide into the DMs, make sure the magazine is one of them. Often times these DMs get lost in the "other" inbox, or are handled by a social media coordinator rather than the editors you want to get the submission in front of. 

Do: Check that there's a theme

If the magazine you're emailing is running on the theme of 'Adrenaline', you're not going to want to send them sleepy pictures in a dusty apartment. Work with the theme of the upcoming issue and tailor your editorials to fit.

Don't: Send a blank email

Don't just send a blank email with images attached –– this feels impersonal and like you're sending the same editorial to every other magazine out there. Take the time to write a concise message in accompaniment of your submission.

Do: Be kind to the editors!

Behind those email addresses are human beings. Always be kind and try to make a little connection –– you never know where it will lead.

Don't: Email giant files, blank WeTransfers, blank DropBoxes

If an editor has to take a ton of time to figure out how to even see the images, it's likely they won't take the time to go through them. Many submissions requirements specify what size or format they'd like your images to be in, so follow the guidelines for a better chance.

Do: Personalize your email to the magazine

If you plan to send the same editorial to multiple magazines, make sure you're getting the magazine's name correct in your email. Also ensure not to CC many magazines at the same time with the same editorial –– these kinds of emails get deleted pretty quickly.

Don't: Send multiple emails checking in

Some magazines reply to all submissions and some don't. Check to see if the magazine states anywhere whether they do or don't reply, and be patient if they do. Submissions-based publications often have very crowded inboxes.

Ready to go? Check out my quick list of magazines that take submissions.