Pitch to Black Ballad
We see Black Ballad as the ultimate modern media company. Beyond our content, we organise events, create community initiatives and work with brands and advertisers in a way that is true to us and never compromises our relationship with black women. However, our editorial content is and will always be the heart and soul of this media company. With that in mind, we are looking for content across text, video and audio that is original, engaging and impactful for our black women. With our platform being created for and powered by black women, we only commission those with the lived experience of black women to achieve our mission and vision and of course, we pay for all commissions as we respect and value the labour of black women.
We are looking for the stories mainstream media won’t tell and angles that are fresh and innovative. So for example, we are highly unlikely to commission pitches such as: why I no longer relax my hair or what returning to my hair's natural hair texture means. These stories are valid, but they have been told numerous times and are still regularly commissioned on mainstream media platforms. Instead, we are much more likely to commission: how do you care for your natural hair when battling depression as it spans across multiple themes such as mental health, black hair and ultimately tells a story you are unlikely to see on other journalism sites. Or videos such as our natural hair documentary as this joyous visual spotlights black women in the British natural hair movement who would be unlikely to be spotlighted on mainstream women’s lifestyle media platforms.
Likewise, we won't commission pitches like what it is like to be the only black woman in my workplace, again for the reasons listed above. In terms of the type of careers pieces we want to publish, previous articles such as The Black Female Health Professionals Fighting Coronavirus or Black Women Making Things Happen In The UK Music Industry are great examples of the content we want. Both of these articles contain the experiences of multiple black women, while simultaneously addressing a topical issue or specific industry that gives readers insight and analysis into how black women deal with societal inequalities or celebrate their triumphs while dealing with workplace challenges.
Please remember we have a high editorial bar, as we are extremely blessed that black women pay for our content and are determined to deliver the content they deserve. So before you send your pitch, ask yourself, would you be willing to pay to read this story?
We've been publishing original writing from black women since 2014, so make sure you have a read of Black Ballad to know the kinds of articles we publish.
Examples of great pitches that turned into great stories
How To Layout Your Pitch:
Please use this structure and layout below in order to be considered for a commission:
- Subject Line: PITCH* - Working title of the article
- If the pitch is timely, or urgent, start the subject line with URGENT PITCH
- 3-4 bullet points or short paragraphs summarising the main points of the article
- A sentence that explains why your pitch works for our readers beyond the fact that they are black, British and female
- Examples of your work on other media platforms/blogs if you haven't been commissioned by Black Ballad before
- If you are writing an opinion piece or a longer investigation, please always include whether you plan to interview anyone else, use statistics or plan to reference other works about the topic you are pitching
- Include a short bio introducing who you are and your social media handles
- Please send all pitches to email@example.com
The 'Do's & 'Don't's When Pitching To Black Ballad:
Do read Black Ballad beforehand to make sure you are not pitching angles or subjects that have already been published.
We want to create the best journalism possible, so think beyond standard opinion pieces: do include original reporting by speaking to others who have the lived experience of black women, do include statistics and do include interviews with experts on the subject matter you are covering.
- Do be patient once your idea is sent in, please give us 5 working days to process your idea. We are a small team of four people and only one full-time editor. Please don't pitch to us or chase us about editorial pitches and commissions on other platforms e.g. our social media channels. Our editor does not monitor those platforms and your editorial concern won't be answered or resolved that way. If you don't hear back or have a pitch refused, please do pitch again in future. It's never personal.
Don't think your pieces have to be "race content". We understand that black women are multifaceted and have various life experiences and we want our editorial to reflect that.
Don't send us fully written articles as pitches. We don't have time to read full written articles. Pitches that are sent in as fully written articles will not be accepted under any circumstances.
What We Are Currently Looking For
- Features and stories that speak to black women's relationship with beauty and fashion
- Stories from Black British women living outside of London, especially in Northern Ireland & the Republic of Ireland
- Stories around careers and finance
- Original stories around dating/relationships
Good luck and we look forward to hearing your ideas!
Book Publicists & PRs
We love books and all things literary at Black Ballad, as do our audience. We accept proofs/review copies of books by black women authors for consideration, but we do not publish straight reviews. Instead we try to cover books and authors in creative ways over our social platforms and website.
We do publish features from authors (please see pitching guidelines above) and we also work with authors and publishing houses on events and promotional activities across our platforms. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for our books and literature media kit.
Black Ballad has a track record of successful partnerships across various sectors. For more information on ways that your brand or organisation can work with Black Ballad please email email@example.com.