Like many writers, getting published on The Huffington Post was sort of a bucket list item for me. Not a bucket list item like how I want to visit France one day, this was something that was starting to feel impossible and that I had absolutely no control over or way to plan for it. People around me and in similar circles had been published on Huffington Post and I started to wonder if perhaps it wasn’t happening for me simply because my work wasn’t good enough. Again, it was just this impossible dream…until it finally happened for me…3 times in 1 week!
Yes, this past week I got the ultimate 3 for 1 dream come true and got 3 articles published on The Huffington Post, with one more pending! So I went from dreaming about it to becoming a real deal Huffington Post Contributor in just one week! It’s all still so surreal to me and I’m actually still getting around to sharing the news of the third out of fear that I would monopolize my friends’ timelines.
Here are the articles published (so far *smile*):
If getting published on The Huffington Post is on your bucket list, here are some tips that may help you get published too.
1. Look at other articles on The Huffington Post within your niche.
The first thing you want to do is study other articles in your niche to see what works – from tone of voice, to writing style, to variety and depth of topics. This is where I actually failed in the past. I’ve pitched articles that I thought were so super original, but truth be told, I couldn’t see where they would actually fit in on the site. This time around, I really studied other articles to see what The Huffington Post team was most partial to and from there, I made the articles I wanted to pitch my own.
2. Prepare your article to pitch
One thing you may notice, especially if you follow this blog, is that the articles I have published on The Huffington Post have all been published on my blog before! Yes, The Huffington Post does allow you to use material that has been published before, so long as the original site allows it. I recommend revising the old post a little bit so that it’s not a complete replica and to make them a better fit for the site. Remove affiliate links (I’m pretty sure these aren’t allowed) and be strategic with any internal link you are going to include (more on that later) and adjust your word count so that it is between 500 and 1000 words.
3. Proofread. Proofread. Proofread.
Before sending your pitch, be sure to check and double check for any spelling or grammar errors. Huffington Post editors are busy people and you probably won’t get selected if they believe they will have to sift through every word you write.
Yes, you can submit through The Huffington Post online submission form, but another more aggressive way to go about is to send an email directly to Arianna Huffington (arianna at huffingtonpost dot com). Send her an email with a brief introduction and a copy of your full article. I just pasted my article directly into the email, but I’m sure it’s not frowned upon to also attach it as a Word document.
Note: Submitting directly to Arianna Huffington is not a guarantee, especially if you did not execute steps 1-3 correctly!
The first email I sent to Arianna was never replied to or addressed. However, I finally got a reply to the second email and that’s when I was officially “in”! Arianna’s email thanked me for my submission and said that she would like to feature my article. She also copied her blog editor and advised that this was the person that would be contacting me soon to get me set up in the system, where I could upload my article for inclusion.
The blog editor contacted me a couple of days later with a user name and password to the site and I was ready to go!
5. The actual submission
Even when you’ve made it this far, it is still not a guarantee. After you get set up on the site and upload your article, it is up to the editors to approve. However, getting into the system allows you to upload as many articles as you desire. In fact, my first article to go live was not even the one that Arianna approved!
I got overzealous that first time (as I sometimes do) and uploaded 4 articles that I’d worked on for inclusion on The Huffington Post…I was determined for this to finally happen! I was contacted just 4 hours later advising me that my first post was live!
6. Celebrate. Share. Promote.
Once you have gotten your first article published on The Huffington Post, you will naturally do a few shouts of joy. It’s a huge honor and definitely something to be proud of. I shared this with my family and friends, thanked members of my blog Facebook groups who’d given me advice and asked everyone I knew to share. Like, everyone! I shared it on my Instagram page and someone commented back “It’s all over my newsfeed!” That truly made me smile!
A few days later, I got the email that my second post was published. And the day after that, I got another! And so it became official – I’m a Huffington Post Contributor!
One of the biggest questions I’ve gotten since is
What has being published on the Huffington done for your blog traffic?
Being published on The Huffington Post does not guarantee that your blog traffic with sky rocket. It gives you a new audience and gets your name out there, but whether or not that results in traffic is a hit or miss.
But here’s a tip for increasing your blog traffic…
This is where I’d like to address the internal links I mentioned earlier. My first 2 articles that were published did not have any links to my blog within them, other than the links in my bio. I did this on purpose to see what would happen. There are very few articles I found on the site that have links back to the writer’s blog, but there are a few. If you link to your site, it has to be super relevant to the article, as opposed to “Here’s a link to my blog…” It should link to the particular blog post that is relevant to the article and not to your homepage. You can see my 3rd article for an example. Nonetheless, this is the biggest way to get more traffic to your blog from your Huff Post article.
I’m still a fairy new Huffington Post contributor, so I’ll continue to update this as time goes on to share my progress. In the meantime, feel free to ask me any questions you have.