I thought it would be instructive for you to see the process from pitch to published to get into O Magazine. This is an excellent example of how to pitch Oprah Magazine.
Below are the details of the reporter’s query, my client’s response and the final piece where she landed in O, The Oprah Magazine.
Oprah Magazine has three versions. The hard copy version of O Magazine, the online version of O, The Oprah Magazine and oprahmag.com (a separate website) so you have plenty of opportunities to get featured!
Here is what happened.
I saw a query in HARO (help a reporter out) from O, The Oprah Magazine that was perfect for my client Dr. Leslie Korn, PhD, MPH, a Harvard Trained Traumatologist and mental health specialist who trains clinicians and consumers on how to improve their mood with food, nutrition, and herbs for optimal brain function. So I jetted the HARO query to her, letting her know the deadline.
NOTE: It’s important to respond to HARO queries ASAP because typically once a reporter or a producer gets enough responses they can use they stop scanning the emails that come in later. So the early bird gets the quote.
Here is the query:
Name: Michelle Darrisaw Oprah.com
Looking for licensed medical professionals or holistic
practitioners who can provide suggestions on natural/organic
remedies to cure headaches without using over-the-counter
medicine or drugs. If it’s instructional, such as using a
hot/cold washcloth, please provide steps along with tips.
Must be a medical professional. If a holistic practitioner or
integrative health doctor, please reference any studies where
you found the suggestion.
Notice how she specifically answered JUST what the editor wanted to know. And gave the O Magazine editor a number of great options to choose from. The reporter used her mustard soak.
Headaches; the cause will determine the best treatment; figuring out what kind of headache it is will enhance treatment efficacy; a frontal headache usually comes from tension in the back neck muscles, so a good acupressure or cranial sacral treatment to the little knobs (called condyles ) on the back of the skull helps, along with placing an iced cloth on the neck.
While heat is soothing, cold kills pain. Headaches often result from vascular changes; changes in blood flow or vessel constriction, and a simple self care technique is to do a mustard foot soak.
Take a bucket of hot water so that you can place your feet and cover up to your ankles with hot water (hot enough, but not burning hot) Add a tablespoon of ground mustard (grinding fresh mustard seed in a small electric grinder is best, but ground mustard will do in a pinch,) then massage some olive oil around your feet and ankles and soak for 30 minutes.
The heat from the water and the mustard will draw down the vascular congestion and release constricted blood vessels in the head bringing blood flow to the feet alleviating the pain. In advance of settling into the soak, prepare a cup of feverfew tea, or have an extract of feverfew on hand to drink to also reduce the headache.
Dehydration is a common cause of headaches and often increasing water intake helps. To calculate how much water one should drink a day, take your body weight and divide it by 50% and that is what you require, in ounces. So a 200 lb. woman requires 100 ounces a day. One can have a little less some days without negative effects but one should shoot for the optimal.
Migraines can be a challenge; I like to recommend the use of the mineral lithium orotate. Unlike the dangerous pharmaceutical lithium carbonate, lithium is a natures gift to us; relieving headaches, giving us the giggles as it boosts our mood and it protects the neurons in the brain.
Lithium can be dosed from 5-25 mg a day, or go on vacation and find a lithium- rich mineral spring in New Mexico, Washington, Texas or Mexico in which to soak. The Native peoples of Washington have a local springs near Mt Tahoma they call “Laughing Springs, rich in healing lithium.
There is also growing evidence for its use in the rare headaches called hypnic headaches. I also supplement with 5HTP, the amino acid precursor to serotonin. Most people do well with from 50-150 mg and Vitamin B-6 helps synthesize it and enhances efficacy.
Finally, I recommend cuddling with a dog; it releases oxytocin also known as the “love hormone” a chemical which reduces the pain of a headache. Dogs also help us put our worries in perspective and remind us of the power of connection.
Michelle, I could go on with lots of methods ; I hope this is a good start and that you will find something useful. If I may be of further support , drop me a note.
The response from the reporter once the piece published.
Thanks for responding to my Haro query. Here’s the link to the article referencing your ground mustard and olive oil foot soak. Take a look so you can see how the O Magazine editor used Korn’s information.
My response to Leslie after the piece published.
Fab! Be sure to write Michelle a quick thank you note and let her know that she can tap you anytime for any of her pieces whenever she needs a resource. Also let her know that you could refer her to other clinicians that could be of help if that’s true. You get the idea — you want to make yourself invaluable.
NOTE: Once you’re in contact with an editor/reporter or producer follow up to let them know that you can be a resource for them in the future.
Recap + additional recommendations to expand your publicity.
- Read the reporter/producer’s query carefully. Give them the EXACT information they request. Example: Korn gave the reporter a number of options to choose from.
- Tailor your bio to show that you’re an expert on the topic that matches the reporter/producer’s requirement.
- Follow up so you can become a trusted source.
- Put the logo of the publication or show on your website to build credibility.
- Send a link to the piece to your ezine subscribers to share valuable information and increase trust and loyalty.
- Put the article on your website and highlight your quote. (You must get permission from the source first.) Otherwise link to the piece on your website so it pops up in a new window.
- Post your piece on social media.
- Write up a blog post with the information that wasn’t used in the article on the topic and link to the piece where you were quoted.
Dr. Leslie Korn is a Harvard Medical School trained integrative medicine specialist. She has provided over 40,000 hours of care for individuals with chronic mental and physical illness specializing in trauma-related issues. She integrates mental health nutrition, somatic therapies, herbal medicine, energy medicine, yoga and exercise, and detoxification to help people have a happier mood, enhanced cognitive function and optimal physical well being.
She has been in private practice in both Boston and in the jungle of Mexico where she founded a free clinic She trains clinicians and consumers in Integrative medicine for mental health, does career counseling and coaching, and is the director of research at the cwis.org, a native non- profit working internationally. She is the author of 8 books including: The Good Mood Kitchen, Rhythms of Recovery: Trauma, Nature and the Body, Nutrition Essentials for Mental Health, Preventing and Treating Diabetes Naturally, The Native Way, and the forthcoming book on herbal medicine called, Natural Woman (Shambhala Press, 2019).