How to pitch – for inhouse content crafters

So you’re ready to start pitching your own content? Hooray!

Before you get started, please revisit the ‘Meet our audience‘ page to remind yourself for whom you’re writing for.

What to include in a pitch…

Please include the following information for each topic proposed:

  • THEME (see the THEMES on the ‘cheat sheet’ card (top left) of the Editorial Schedule in Trello – select one of the six)
  • Category (see the categories on the ‘Explore’ drop-down menu on our site: you need ONLY one category and one sub-category)
  • General theme (eg French women, French kids, French language, Paris insider guide, Culture, politics in France)
  • SEO keywords (eg include Primary and Secondary SEO keywords)
  • Alert rating (eg Cliché or Audience match or…): High, medium or low. (eg –Romance = high, –markets = medium, or the economy/politics = low)
  • Format (eg report, interview, feature article, list articles, guide, collaborative article)
  • Topic (a more detailed explanation of the topic you’ll be exploring – 3/4 sentences – convince us why our audience and our magazine must have your article!)
  • Angle (a detailed explanation of the angle (and differentiation) from which you’ll explore this topic – 3/4 sentences)
  • Structure (give us your proposed structure – provide headings and sub-headings)
  • Relevant external & internal links (at least two of each and insert these between the headings wherever appropriate – find quality sites – do not include Trip Adviser, Timeout etc.

For example:

  • Category: Vie française
  • General theme: French relationships
  • SEO keywords: Primary – French known as romantics Secondary keywords – French infidelity, French relationships, Romantic French
  • Alert rating ( Cliché): High – I’ll avoid a cliché article specifically by ….
  • Topic: Do cultural backgrounds influence relationship expectations?
  • Angle: Deep exploration of relationships – is it a cliché that french have and accept affairs? What is the reality? Looking at French and Anglo perspectives – possibly quotes or collaborative paragraph contributions.
  • Structure: (indicate sub-headings and sub-topics – remember SEO keywords into some of these)
    • Title: Do the French really have the monopoly on romance?
    • Intro: Introduce debate via several highly publicised examples.
    • Romantics vs realists: The dichotomy of the French being known as romantics and the stereotype of their infidelity. Are romance and passion the same thing?
    • How do we compare? A look at how other cultures view love, relationships, romance and infidelity. It would be good to have a few people from different cultures define each term to them.
    • Specifically looking at relationships in the public eye: how does our treatment of politicians involved in romantic scandal differ?
    • What do the French have to say? Opinions from French people and Anglophones on whether the French do in fact have the right idea.
    • And therefore: Have the French misconstrued what romance really means?
    • Note: This plan may change as research and interviews are conducted.
  • Resources: [List external and internal links here]

For new writers: submitting pitches

If you would be able to send us a list of article topics via email in a Google or preferably a Word Doc, we’ll then put them into our content scheduling tool and invite you to have a look. From here we’ll then talk through potential angles, layouts and the SEO requirements for each. Soon you’ll learn how to submit through Trello and Slack.

Pitching in Trello

Each in-house team member or intern will pitch articles in Trello.

Pitches will originally occur as a word document sent by email. However, soon we’ll have you set-up and using Trello and Slack our two core team process tools.

To pitch in Trello you go to the Editorial Schedule board. You create a new card at the base of the list ‘Pitches’. You then take that Trello card link and post it in Slack in the #pitch channel and tag @judymacmahon.

The Editorial Schedule board in Trello will look something like this:



As you can see that the Editorial Schedule contains a number of lists:

1. Pitches – this is where you pitch your articles – one card for each article – the author sets up a new card in this list.

2. Pitch for Review – pitches are moved to this list by the content coordinator and a review is conducted before being approved.

3. Awaiting submission – following a pitch approval, the card is moved to this list by the content coordinator.

4. Article & Images submitted – awaiting allocation – The author moves the card to this list after submitting a word doc and images.

5. Where from there? Each card makes its way to the right of the Editorial Schedule according to the nature of the work and treatment required. These will involve translation (if required), sub-edit, format, edit and then finally to the ‘Edited awaiting Scheduling on PS‘.

6. Edited awaiting Scheduling on PS – once we’re happy that the text of the article has been finalised, we move it onto this list, then set a publishing date and move the card to the Publication Schedule. This is done by the content coordinator.

How to make a new pitch card in Trello

Click here to read how a card is created in our Editorial Schedule. The process for pitching will be much the same:

1. Card title: topic of the article. NB: This will not be the final title + Don’t forget to include the THEME & Name of author

2. Label: category of article + Author type eg Contributor or Collaborator

3. Description: please insert the details of your pitch using the template above. Keep it concise and don’t forget to include links!

4. If the article is time sensitive: please alert us to the fact on the card, and send us a message in Slack.

Any questions?

Don’t hesitate to send us an email or a message in Slack! We’re always happy to help.

About the Contributor

Judy MacMahon

Experience FRANCE beyond the CLICHÉ with MyFrenchLife is for Curious Savvy Francophiles wherever you are. Meet Francophiles in France, online, and/or wherever you live. You’re very welcome to join us - Judy MacMahon -

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