How to Find Media Outlets, Bloggers and Journalists That Will Post Your Music
Now that your press release is written, where do you send it? Finding writers and outlets that would be interested in writing about you and your music involves a lot of research, but it’s probably not as hard as you think it is. I’m almost 100% positive that you’re overthinking it actually.
It’s as simple as finding contact information and sending an email.
Yup, that’s it.
And since you already read our article on how to write a killer press release, and downloaded our email pitch template, sending the email is gonna be a piece of cake.
So this article is going to break down how to handle that first part which is finding contact information of people who you can send that awesome press release to.
The key to getting press is to find local and national media outlets, journalists and bloggers that would definitely be interested in covering your story and writing about your music.
Here’s how to do it…
google is your best friend
One major thing you’ll want to understand is that research is key. Google is going to be your best friend throughout this whole process.
You’ll probably spend 25% of your time researching, 25% of your time writing your pitches, 25% of your time sending out emails with your pitches, and 25% of your time following up with people to make sure they received your pitches. And the circle continues.
Stay Organized [+ free download]
Since you’ll be finding people who you can send your music to, you’ll need to keep track of all of this contact information. Staying organized and taking good notes will help you tremendously.
We highly suggest using a spreadsheet (using Excel or Google spreadsheets) to keep track of the contact info for every media outlet and writer that you come across.
Lucky for you, we did this for you already. [click here to download our media contact list spreadsheet]
Using a spreadsheet like this [hyperlink again] is really helpful because you can make note of who you reached out to and more importantly, who covered you and your music.
FACT: Someone who already wrote about you will be interested in writing about you again.
Because of this we added a tab called “VIPS” that you can use [hyperlink] to keep track of who already covered your music. They should be the first people you reach out to for coverage in the future (like if you have a new album coming out and need more press).
get to know people before pitching
You’d be surprised at what building genuine relationships can do.
You know the saying, “support those who support you” but in reality, you have to be the person who supports those people who you want support from.
We highly encourage you to not just be on the hunt for contact information, but to truly try to connect with people.
This means, once you find these beautiful people who can potentially write about your music, do not send them a pitch right away. Instead do the following:
Read their articles. Share them on social media.
Follow them on Twitter and engage with their tweets.
Follow them on Instagram and like and comment on their posts.
Subscribe to their Youtube channel.
All of this goes a really long way.
If you can’t find their email, don’t be afraid to ask for it.
If their email isn’t displayed on their social media or on the media outlet, your best bet is to send them a DM on Twitter or Instagram and ask if they take music pitches and if so, where should you send the email.
Just be sure that you don’t spam them with your music. Resist the urge to slide in their DMs with a music link. This is an instant turn off and tells the person on the other end that you do not value them, only what they can do for you. This also makes you look unprofessional and naive, as if you knew better you’d know that DMing your music link isn’t the way to get coverage. The conversation can start in a DM, but business happens in the email.
If you want someone to cover your music, the least you can do is say hello before shoving your music down their throat and asking them to write about you.
Getting press in your home town is probably the easiest (and most practical) press to get when you’re a budding artist.
If you aren’t familiar with your local papers and media outlets, you can literally google “local paper” and a handful of results will come up.
What you’ll want to do is visit their website and find the contact section. Sometimes this is on the main menu and other times it’s all the way at the bottom of the page in the footer. Every once and a while this information is located on the right or left sidebar. But 99.9% of the time, the contact info is displayed somewhere on the site.
As you can see in the photo above, local Philadelphia paper, Philly Weekly lists all of their contact info on their website (the link to this page was located in the footer of their website). To pitch your story (and your music), you would send an email over to the Editor, Kerith Gabriel (which we highly suggest if you’re located in the Philly area as he’s a really cool guy).
get National/Online Press
The best way to find a writer that would be more likely to post your music is by looking up similar artists in your genre and checking out who’s writing about them.
So for instance, if you think someone who listens to Megan Thee Stallion would like your music, do a quick google search for Megan Thee Stallion and see what comes up.
We searched google for “megan thee stallion” and as you can see in the picture above, over 6 million results came up. You want to pay attention to the first 5-10 pages in the search results to see what outlets are writing about her.
Click on a few of those articles and take a look at who the writer is. Often you’ll find their email or social media links in the article itself (either at the very top or the very bottom).
We highly suggest reading these articles and following the writers on social media to get familiar with the writers and their work before pitching anything to them. Then when you reach out to them, you can reference back to the article you read. That shows them that you did your research and therefore makes them take you more serious than someone who randomly grabbed their email online and didn’t personalize the pitch.
[hyperlink: article on how to write their pitch email + email pitch template]
Keep in mind, some writers can write about whatever they want, but others get told what to write or they have to get approval before posting anything. Some writers can’t take personal pitches at all. So keep this in mind and don’t get offended if someone doesn’t want to write about you. After all, you don’t want to beg for it, you want them to want to write about you.
Don’t sleep on twitter
Another amazing way to find writers and media contacts is by using the Twitter search tool. For example, if you want to find a writer from The Source Magazine (@thesource), you can type in @thesource in Twitter search. Once you’re on the search results page, you can filter that search to only show you “people” and BOOM, a bunch of writers from The Source come up that you can follow and engage with and eventually pitch your music to.
You can use the Twitter search tool to find writers from so many different outlets. Some writers write for multiple sites and may be able to help get your music on more than one site.
use Blog Directories
There are also blog directories with hundreds more outlets for you to submit your music to. All it takes is a google search for “music blogs to submit to” and BOOM a ton of results pop up with blogs that will write about your music.
Here’s a whole google spreadsheet with over 100 blogs and their contact info (it’s not ours, we found it with a quick search).
Hype Machine is a popular music discovery platform. All of the “mainstream” outlets and some smaller outlets get filtered through Hype Machine. It’s a great way to research outlets to send your music to. Here’s a link to their blog directory.
Praverb (may he RIP) has a great site full of info and resources for artists. Two of my favs though are his blog directories: The Ultimate R&B Music Blog Directory and The Ultimate Hip Hop Blog Directory.
Here’s a few other blog directories we found with a simply google search:
Buy Contact Lists
We put this at the very bottom because while it can cut out the research and relationship building, it’s also the least effective (since you’re essentially skipping steps).
There are many places that you can buy contacts lists. Some are really expensive (like muckrack) and others are sold by trusted individuals like Wendy Day.
If you do purchase a contacts list, you should use it as a starting point and really research each contact before sending a submission.