Search This Blog

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Double-Dip Technique #1: Squeeze More from your Interviews

One of the easiest ways to work more efficiently is to write about the same subjects more than once, approaching each from a different angle for a new audience and market.

In fact, I often find that as I'm researching one story, I have an idea for another one—and I may already have information I can use for my next query. For example, when researching a piece for a women's magazine, I interviewed an expert from the Cooper Institute for Aerobics Research. I used that interview for my new query to a custom magazine for business owners on a similar subject:

Dear Mr. Fuller:

Millions of people frequently resolve that we’ll get more exercise. But if you're running your own business, it may seem impossible to fit regular workouts into your busy schedule. How can you reap the benefits of a more active lifestyle—and still have time for everything else?

First, toss out the notion that exercise only "counts" if you do it for thirty minutes or more. Even ten-minute sessions of everyday activities like walking stairs will help strengthen your heart, burn calories, and tone your muscles, says Cyndi Ford, research associate at the Cooper Institute for Aerobics Research.

“Sneaky Fitness: Get More Exercise into your Day” will include a number of easy methods that business owners can use to incorporate more activity into their busy lives. I’ll include advice from experts such as Ford as well as real-life anecdotes to flesh out the story. While I estimate 1,000 words for this article, that’s flexible depending on your editorial needs.

Interested in this topic for your “For your Health” section or as a feature? [rest of query deleted]

Does it matter I used information from researching another story for my query? Nope. Once I get the assignment, I'll do another interview with the source for quotes for this particular piece, and use other experts as well. This technique (one of the ways I "double-dip") helps me spin off other ideas and cuts my marketing time as well.


  1. That's a clever technique, one I've used on occasion as well. I think it works best when you write about certain subjects often.

  2. Actually, I'd like to read your article. I have to exercise because of my fibromyalgia, and working from home in front of a computer all day is trying. I exercise about four times a week at an hour each - Pilates (great for my above-named illness) and treadmill. It's the in-between times I forget about.

    Let me know which magazine it's in, unless it's been printed and you have a link.

  3. Thanks, Mridu!

    And JM, send me an email to kelly at and I'll send you a copy of the piece. :)