What we’re looking for at Matador Network

At Matador Network, we’re looking for people with stories, not broad information on a general topic. Before sending a pitch our way, be sure the idea you have covers the following:

Angle: Each story needs to have a strong angle that hasn’t been widely covered elsewhere. It should provide an answer as to why a destination, event, or thing is being covered.

  • Yes: “The two types of ways that travelers approach PTO. This is how to know the one that’s right for you” — Americans are notoriously bad at taking vacation days, and recent studies show it was even worse in 2020. This article will make the case for and against the two main ways that people can take advantage of PTO: one long vacation or many short vacations.
  • No: “I’d like to write about PTO.” — Lacks a reason for why now makes for a good time to publish a story about PTO.

Audience relevance: All story pitches should be relevant to the Matador Network audience of travelers and have a travel angle. 

We’re looking for two types of stories. The first are pieces that cover a destination’s culture, history, and lifestyle. The second are stories that provide serviceable information people can use; these could include travel tips, explain when the best time to travel to a place is, and offer suggestions on what to do when you get to your destination (and how to do it). 

Before sending a pitch, ask yourself who is this story for and how does it serve Matador Network readers?

  • Yes: The best ways to start a campfire, regardless of the conditions” — This story is clearly geared toward people who love camping and exploring the outdoors, and provides a service to those readers by explaining campfire starting methods.
  • No: “The best at-home fire pits” — This is geared toward people who are looking for home inspiration.

Have a specific title for your story in mind: Stories should focus on something specific rather than a broad topic. One way to know if the story has a clear and specific enough angle is to have a succinct and well-crafted title in mind that accurately describes what the story is about.

  • Yes: The best Route 66 stops in Texas, from 72-oz steaks to the ‘Grand Canyon of Texas’” — Focuses on one section of Route 66 that’s less famous than other stretches and answers the question of why people should road trip along the part of Route 66 in Texas.
  • No: “I’d like to write about what to do on Route 66” — Too broad of a topic that lacks an answer as to why this story is different from the many Route 66 guides out there.

Know the vertical your story belongs in and include it in your pitch: Matador Network has six verticals: Travel, Culture, Outdoor, Food and Drink, Lifestyle, and Entertainment. Within these categories are several subtopics, but each pitch should belong under one of these verticals. Each of these topics is browsable by clicking on the vertical in our top navigation, then clicking the subtopic underneath the main photo of the landing page. We encourage you to browse these pages to get an idea of the types of stories we write about. For more information about verticals, consult our contributor guide.

Trip planning: Travel is about experiences, and Matador Network stories have some element of how to experience the thing being written about. Each piece needs to have some explanation that covers why this topic is being written about, followed by ways someone can see for themself why we wrote about the topic.

  • Yes: The best places in Alabama for boiled peanuts, the South’s iconic road trip food” — This story explains why boiled peanuts are a Southern staple and then offers suggestions of how and where people can experience boiled peanuts for themself.
  • No: “I’d like to write about why people eat boiled peanuts in the South” — This has the cultural angle, but is not right for us because it doesn’t provide places for people to try them after reading about them.

Useful resources

Use these helpful pitching guides from around the web to help craft your pitch:

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