Simply Local Blogger Guidelines

updated February 9, 2021

So, you want to be a Simply Local blogger…  

We are looking for lifestyle-minded people who want to help others live their best lives to reach out and support our readership on our website between print issues of Simply Local Magazine

Areas of focus: LOCAL | FAMILY | FOOD | HOME 

 There are two ways that you can contribute: REGULAR CONTRIBUTOR or GUEST CONTRIBUTOR

 REGULAR CONTRIBUTORS: Upon acceptance our regular contributors commit to writing weekly or semi-weekly blog posts and will be compensated as follows: 

Approved-Published Posts: 

  • Reflective Blog Posts: $20/post 
  • Informative Blog Posts: $20/post 
  • Blog Posts containing crafts, recipes including step-by-step instructions and original photos: $25/post 
  • Out & About in Billings/Event Blog Posts (including photo/s): $20, regular submissions OR $25 if assigned to attend an event 

(Please email an invoice for the current month’s blogs to the Executive Editor by the 27th of each month. Payment will be provided the month following publication. i.e. blogs published in January would receive payment in February.) 

  • While we promote all of our content via social networking, we ask that our regular contributors promote their own work as well. You will be notified when your post is approved. 
  • If you are accepted as a regular contributor, please send us a professional headshot. This allows your image to appear with your name on your blog posts. 
  • A maximum of 4 paid SLM blogger (regular contributors) submissions may be posted each week. 

GUEST CONTRIBUTORS: We are also seeking contributions from business owners / professionals / educators / non-profit agencies / etc…willing to share their expertise or provide information regarding upcoming activities and events with our readers. The information contained in guest blog posts must be relevant to the individuals and families who read our magazine. Products and services can be mentioned in the article, but they should not be the main focus of the blog. While these posts will not be compensated, we encourage our guest-bloggers to showcase their business / event / etc… via a 2-3 sentence author bio. Upon approval, your blog submission will appear on the Simply Family/Simply Local website and the link will be emailed to you.  

STEPS FOR SUBMITTING YOUR BLOG POST (ALL CONTRIBUTORS): 

  1. If you have not already been approved as an SLM Blogger / Guest Blogger, please send links to previous work or a brief 250-500 word sample post to blog@simplyfamilymagazine.com
  2. Once you receive confirmation that your preliminary idea was accepted, subsequent posts should be sent in Word format (no PDF files, please). The post must include the title, your name, and author bio. Please include a minimum of one photo (as an attachment). See below for more information regarding legal use of photos. Your author bio should be 2-3 sentences on you and your blog or qualifications – whatever you want the readers to know. Please note that your post will be reviewed, and we reserve the right to further edit for content, length, format, and grammatical and spelling errors. For more information on content guidelines, please read the section below. 
  3. If your submission is approved, you will receive confirmation when it has been published. Your post may go live quickly, or it may take a few weeks to post depending upon the number of articles we have in queue.  

GENERAL GUIDELINES: 

  • All content must be family-friendly. Any links (this includes to your own blog as well), photos, and content must fit the content and be appropriate in nature for an audience of all ages. Submissions will not be accepted if this is not followed. 
  • Posts can be informal but should still maintain a professional feel. 
  • The length of your post should be at least 250 words but not more than 800 words
  • Search-engine friendly headlines. Focus on including keywords in your headline so that readers can find your articles in search engines. Your headline should accurately sum up the content of your article. 
  • All posts must include at least one relevant and clear photo. Make sure to credit the appropriate (legal) source (if it is not your image) with a hyperlink. 
  • Bloggers should include a 2-3 sentence biography at the end of their post which can include a business website / link / contact information, etc… Affiliate links will not be allowed.  

TOPIC IDEAS:  

While we accept a variety of content and want to encourage you to write about subjects you are knowledgeable and passionate about, here are some of our more popular topics with you to generate some ideas. 

  • Holiday Crafts / Activities / Kids Projects – these are especially popular when they are timely. Submit holiday-themed content 2-3 weeks before the holiday for maximum exposure! 
  • Step-by-Step Tutorials and Recipes. Original photos (showing steps) are especially popular! 
  • Local Events / Activities 
  • DIY Projects and Resources 
  • Financial Wellness / Money Saving Ideas & Tips 
  • Parenting Humor / Heart Pieces 
  • Health & Fitness
  • Locally-themed Human Interest Spotlights 
  • Home-Related Content (organization, design, décor etc.) 

Need more ideas? Pick up a copy of the current issue of SLM and take note of the monthly theme. We would love submissions that relate to and/or expand upon the current month’s print edition! 

 PHOTO GUIDELINES: 

Ideally, we would have access to personally taken photographs that perfectly and professionally fit our blog posts, however that is not always realistic. Those times when you find yourself searching, it is so very important that you only use photos you are legally allowed to use and that are properly attributed. Many people think any image they find on Google Images is free to use simply because it is on the internet; this is not true. PLEASE DO NOT SEARCH GOOGLE IMAGES AND USE ANY PHOTO YOU LIKE. The majority of those photos belong to someone else, and should the person or company who owns the photo discover you’re using it, you are legally liable. 

  • Attributing Photos: After downloading a legal photo, the next most important thing you need to do is attribute it properly. Please include attribution information either in how you’ve saved/named the picture, or highlight it at the end of your submission, so it can be properly captioned. DO NOT use the phrase “courtesy of” unless you have received explicit written permission from the photographer. The most common way to attribute a photo is to write, “Photo by John Smith/Associated Press.” Or, “Photo by ljleavell/Stock Xchng.” 
  • This article does a great job of explaining the best ways to make sure you’re using online photos legally: http://lifehacker.com/5992419/the-best-ways-to-be-sure-youre-legally-using-online-photos 

 Questions? Please email blog@simplyfamilymagazine.com