Ever dreamed of seeing your face in a magazine? I’m going to share the whole process so you can learn how to get featured in a magazine, too!
So, did I ever dream of seeing my face in a magazine? Honestly, I didn’t! As an introvert, I DIY because it gives me a quiet, creative outlet I enjoy. But I also enjoy helping people. And when I realized I could share my experiences to help others love what they already have in their homes with a little DIY too, I created Emily Rone Home. Never in a million years did I expect to see my name and my pictures in a publication. And not just any publication, but in Better Homes & Gardens magazine! I’m going to share the whole process for those interested in a feature too, or for any who just want the inside scoop on how in the world this happened.
Last spring, I participated in the One Room Challenge, a semi-annual event hosted by Better Homes & Gardens and Linda from Calling it Home. 20 featured designers and countless guest participants transform a space in their home in 8 weeks. Participants document their project on their blog and/or Instagram accounts so everyone can follow along and support each other’s projects.
It was inspiring participating alongside so many other talented DIY’ers, and ultimately achieve two completely refreshed outdoor patio spaces just in time for summer. It just happened to be one of these projects that caught an editor’s eye and led to the publication.
The One Room Challenge lasted 8 weeks, so I completed 8 projects during the process including DIY custom cornhole boards, a DIY potted string light stand , pallet wood outdoor shoe and tool storage boxes , re-painted exterior siding, and a DIY checkerboard tabletop. But the star of the show was this DIY vertical hanging wall planter.
A lot of my DIY projects, especially in the early days of Emily Rone Home, were based off inspiration and projects I was recreating after seeing it on Pinterest or Instagram. I enjoy being transparent, sharing where my inspiration came from, and writing about my experience with the project (because no two DIY’ers make the same mistakes, so learn from our trial and error!). The vertical hanging wall planter may have been the first completely original project I imagined and planned myself.
So, how did you get featured in a magazine?
Creating and posting original content, as well as a thorough and well written tutorial is a great place to start. Editors are looking for unique, creative content that can provide inspiration to their readers.
Also, participating in the One Room Challenge sponsored by Better Homes & Gardens is a great way to gain exposure. That’s how my project got noticed, and everything else fell into place.
Alternatively, you could use the hashtag #BHGIDidIt on social media outlets, or directly pitch your project to them at IDidIt@meredith.com. The worst they can say is no!
So, what happened next?
I received the following email from Kit Selzer, senior remodeling and projects editor for Better Homes & Gardens magazine.
My initial impression was, “it has to be a scam”. I immediately sent it to my husband, who told me to Google her name. Turns out, she does in fact work for Better Homes & Gardens. So, I responded to the email, cautiously optimistic.
Over the next few months, we emailed back and forth to create the feature. They were happy with the photos I already had of the project, and offered to pay for usage and publication rights.
*Want to learn how to take magazine worthy photos? I’ve created an E-book to outline my process, which not only got me noticed by Better Homes & Gardens, but paid!
Some highlights for good photography include ensuring you take a good variety of “before” photos, pictures throughout the process, and clean, bright and staged after “reveal” photos. I share my entire editing process here.
Kit used my blog post regarding the project for most of the meat of the story, but had a few additional questions to fill in gaps or further clarify. She also took a few direct quotes over email to embed in the article.
Is there anything else I need to know?
I was required to submit an invoice in order to get paid by Better Homes & Gardens for the use of my photos. If providing an invoice is new for you too, don’t worry! I’ll share my template with you. I had to do research to make sure I included all the necessary elements.
*If you are a beginner blogger or influencer, I have written a whole post to help you know what documents are important to create and keep handy to ensure you are ready for any collaboration that may come you way!
If you are planning on pitching your project to Better Homes & Gardens, or any magazine, the last thing you’ll need is a media kit.
A media kit is just a fancy creator’s term for a resume. It is a little different from your traditional resume- AKA the one I have and use for my day job as a speech language pathologist. As a creator, it’s important your media kit reflects you, your personality and your accomplishments. You want to be sure and include these five elements:
- Photo(s)- bonus points for a picture of your face, and a picture to showcase your best work
- About Me- share a bit about you and/or your business
- Links to all Social Media Accounts- may include website, email, Instagram, Pinterest, Liketoknow.it, Facebook, etc.
- Stats- include blog monthly page views, email subscribers, Pinterest followers and monthly views, Instagram followers and engagement rate, Liketoknow.it followers, etc.
- Previous Partnerships- show off collaborations you have completed in the past
My favorite templates for creating a Media Kit usually come from Canva, don’t think you have to recreate the wheel here! I like to include examples of my photography as well, and a picture of me so people can put a face with a name.
If you aren’t already using Canva, it’s a great resource for digital creators. Canva is a website with both a free and premium version that can help you create professional electronic marketing images with no background necessary in graphic design.
So that’s how to get featured in a magazine
It was a long 6 months from the initial email to seeing my name in print, but it was all worth it. There is no better feeling than receiving recognition for your hard work, and getting to share my projects on an even bigger stage.
I hope this inspires you to keep creating and taking chances. That dream was planted in your heart for a reason. Take the leap!