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10 Tips for Pitching Multimedia Content

Digital editors explain how to make your multimedia story idea more salable

- August 24, 2010
We've all heard that reporters today need to be able to do more than just write. Now editors at newspapers, magazines, blogs and websites want to see stories accompanied by some kind of visual content, whether it's photos, video, graphics and/or audio slideshows and even polls and other interactive content. Smart journalists are scrambling to learn the new technologies, applying their storytelling skills to multiplatform packages.

But having a variety of multimedia skills is just the beginning. Most of the bigger online publications with a strong commitment to multimedia have full-time photographers and even video producers on staff. If you're not on staff, getting your work published (for pay) is no easy task. Place like The New York Times, say, produce all their multimedia content in-house, in part because they have the budget and the staff to do so, but also because it makes managing multimedia assets and all the technical specifications that go along with them much easier.

That said, there are still opportunities to pitch and sell your work to online editors and even become a regular digital contributor. But you'll need to learn as much as you can about the publication's work flow, style and needs so that you can help fill any gaps they may have. You'll also need to have your own equipment: that means the hardware and software you'll need to deliver your content. And as always, it's crucial to know what kind of multimedia content the site already publishes, so that you can identify what they're likely to want. Here, editors and consultants reveal what freelancers can do to get noticed....

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