Content Submission Guidelines

CyclingTips is one of the largest cycling websites in the world and we strive to be the highest quality, serving up hundreds of pages per second to millions of users a month. In addition to our editorial coverage, CyclingTips also provides a platform for events, brands, and manufacturers to showcase their content to our community.

Are you a brand who would like to submit product press release or branded storytelling? An event organizser looking to submit a local event report?

Awesome—we’d love to see your work. But please keep in mind that we receive hundreds of videos, press releases, stories, and other content every week. While we can’t guarantee running any particular item, following this guide will dramatically increase your chances of getting on the homepage.

Submissions not adhering to these guidelines will not be published.

How to submit (general)

If you’re already familiar with these guidelines, you can skip directly to submitting content here:

Tips for your content: what makes a good CyclingTips post?

We get a lot of submissions and only accept the cream of the crop. To give yourself an edge, consider these suggestions.

• Create content for riders
Read CyclingTips. Read the comments. Subscribe to our newsletter. Get a sense of what this community is all about. Our readers are passionate, educated riders, and can smell marketing BS a mile away. Consider their challenges, questions, and dreams.

• Keep it brief and to the point
We allow 600 words for news and product releases (not including ‘key details’ section). If you can’t tell the audience why what you have to say is important in under 600 words, then you should think about how this can be done.

• Back it up
Making a bold claim about something? Support your claims with data, testing, and corroboration from people who aren’t paid to promote it. If your claims are outlandish, unproven, or hyperbolic we won’t publish them.

• Remember that we are nerds
We’re all suckers for portmanteau, puns, and alliteration. Our audience expects a high standard of writing here.

• Avoid buzzwords
Nobody needs to hear “laterally stiff yet vertically compliant” again. And PLEASE don’t use #hashtags in your copy. #theworst #seriously

• Stay informal
Write as if speaking with a friend. Keep it concise. Use common contractions and colloquial language, but remember not all our readers speak English as their first language.

• Use of humour
Most of us love a good laugh but for our purposes here it’s best to suppress our internal comedian. We encourage you to be ‘fun’ and playful, but being ‘funny’ is in the eye of the beholder and is very different to different people (especially across the globe).

• Give video some supporting content
Adding a few photos and some words to a video is a great way to add depth to your story. We also need an interesting image uploaded to use as a featured image, which will also a thumbnail for the homepage. Thumbnails should be interesting images that can be seen and distinguished in smaller sizes, and can’t have text or logos on them. Landscape images are beautiful, but can’t bee seen at 100×100 pixels large.

• Video
To add a video, simply cut/paste the YouTube link into the editor and the article will embed it.

• Give credit where it’s due
Acknowledge your photographers and videographers, don’t post content without permission, cite your sources, attribute your quotes, etc.

• Minimize links
Links can get out of control. We are all for acknowledging supporters or sponsors who may have helped to make your story/video/project happen, but limit them to one or two per story.

Creating an account to submit content

  1. Go here to create and account, or here to login to your existing account
  2. Go to your profile page and put your contact details, business name, and profile photo that will show up in your articles in your by-line

***IMPORTANT: PR agencies, please note that your Display Name (in your profile which shows up in the by-line) must be of the brand you are representing, not of your business name. If you intend on publishing content from multiple brands, you will need multiple accounts each displaying that brand name.

There are two general categories for submitting news/press releases or branded storytelling/event reports:

1. Submit a press release: This is for general news and new product announcements.
2. Submit a branded story: Have a photo epic or amazing video that tells a story? Or an event (race, festival, ride, etc) to report on? Use this open template to create your content.

1. How to submit Press Releases for news or products

  1. At the top left of the page click the ‘Add New’ button to create a new article
  2. In the ‘Please choose content type’ dropdown menu, please select ‘Press Release’ (selected by default)
  3. In the template, please fill out the required information. Please do so in full sentences and 100% correct with grammar and spelling. We will not be copyediting (and will probably not get published if it’s more than a typo). This general template is for consistency and to make sure that all the information our audience wants to know about is there.
  4. Please use a compelling headline that tells the reader why they should care about the article. A well constructed headline is key to getting people to read your article. Be playful if you like, but do not use clickbate. Maximum characters (incl. spaces) is 75 characters for a headline.
  5. Please add a feature image that will show at the top of the article, and also be used for the thumbnail on the homepage. Please see note about about how to choose your feature image and thumbnail.
  6. Upload up to 5 supporting images if desired.
  7. Please let us know if there is an embargo date on this by selecting the checkbox ‘is there an embargo date’. If there is, please let us know the date and time so that we don’t publish this early.
  8. You can preview how your article looks by selecting the ‘preview’ button.
  9. Once you are happy with how it looks and how it reads, please click ‘submit’ and our editors will look at it and publish if it newsworthy to our audience.

Have a significant new product release or sponsorship, event coming up? Announcing an important business development ?

If your Press Release is embargoed, please make sure you let us know in the embargo section with the day/month/year/time (GMT)

Please note that CyclingTips reserves the right to edit, modify, and update your submissions for clarity, accuracy, interest, formatting, and style. CyclingTips’ content managers may select an appropriate headline for the homepage, so don’t be surprised if your “New Product is Amazing” article title gets changed to a “Brand Y Announces New Product” headline.

• Include a complete description
• Write clearly, addressing who/what/when/where/why and when.
• Include pricing, availability, and other relevant info.

• Include photos and/or video
• Press Releases without imagery will not be posted.

• Do not include unsubstantiated claims.
• “We believe this to be the best handlebar on the market” is fine, but “This helmet has been scientifically proven to be the safest” is not, unless you provide compelling independent evidence for your claims.
• If your claims are outlandish or hyperbolic we won’t publish them.

• Do not imply an endorsement from our technical editors.
• No writing about yourself in the 3rd person.
• No self-produced “interviews.”
• Don’t use CyclingTips’ editorial titles (eg. First Look, Bikes of the Bunch, Nerd Alert, etc.).
• Don’t mimic CyclingTips’ bike test formatting, or do anything else that may mislead readers.

• Get it to us ahead of time
• We don’t like being late.

• Include a maximum of 1 link or call-to-action per submission

• Date the release and include whether the material is for immediate release or delayed release.
• If your content has an embargo, please make note of it at the top of your story in bold letters.
• Unless otherwise requested, releases go out ASAP. If the embargo specifies a day but not a time zone, we’ll generally release it at 12:01 am, Pacific Standard Time.
• Press releases embargoed for Monday mornings should be submitted by the previous Thursday at midnight. We strive to be timely, but don’t guarantee any timing for content submitted over the weekend.

• Make yourself available for additional info
• Identify the organization or individual sending the release.
• Include the name, phone number, and email of someone we can contact if we have questions.

2. How to submit feature stories & event reports

Have an amazing photo epic or video your brand has created? Think our readers would enjoy reading your event report? Have an action video of one of your athletes you’d like us to post?

Great, submit a CyclingTips article following the instructions above and the guidelines below. If your content is embargoed, please specify this in the first line of your post in ALL CAPS including the timezone you are specifying. If no embargo is stated or if it is ambiguous, it will be published.

  1. At the top left of the page click the ‘Add New’ button to create a new article
  2. In the ‘Please choose content type’ dropdown menu, please select ‘Branded Storytelling’
  3. Begin creating your content in the ‘what you see is what you get’ (WYSIWYG) editor.

Please note that CyclingTips reserves the right to edit, modify, and update your submissions for clarity, accuracy, interest, formatting, and style. CyclingTips’ content managers may select a more appropriate headline for the homepage, so don’t be surprised if your “Sickest Ride Ever: Dust 2 Dawn” blog title gets changed to a “Event Report: Rainy Racing at Dust 2 Dawn 2021” headline.

1. Be timely
• Event reports long after an event won’t be published.
• Stories that have been posted elsewhere first won’t be published.

2. If coordinating a story with a launch, have your materials to us early
• For example, things being posted Monday morning in conjunction with a launch should be submitted by Thursday. We do our best but can’t always get to content overnight or over weekends.

4. Do not imply an endorsement from our content team
• Don’t use CyclingTips’ editorial titles (eg. Roadtripping, From the Top, Nerd Alert, The Secret Pro, etc.).
• Don’t do anything that may mislead readers.

5. Include the full story
• We strive to continue growing as the platform where our readers are engaged, educated, and get complete insight.
• Make sure your story goes somewhere. Keep it progressing, take the audience somewhere.

6. Get it right the first time
• Changes after publication can be a challenge, so make sure you’ve avoided typos in names, credited all the right people, etc. before you submit your story.

7. Include only 1 link or call-to-action per submission

8. Avoid outlandish or misleading product placements.

10. Make yourself available for additional info
• Identify the organization or individual sending the release.
• Include the name, phone number, and email of someone we can contact if we have questions.

Rejection

We’re committed to high quality content, and post only a fraction of the content we receive.

Generally we will not give a reason for rejection due the volume of posts. If your post is awesome and we want to run it, but it’s missing something critical like a thumbnail image, we will try to get in touch so you have a chance to fix it.

If you don’t see your content on the homepage please keep in mind that we often choose to run content in limited regions. Regional event results from Vancouver aren’t relevant to our readers in South Africa, and vice versa.

Common reasons for rejection:

• Quality of content — we have high standards and our readers do too. We always prioritize content that is authentic and exciting, with compelling visuals and engaging storytelling. If a video is super short, or super long, or super producty, or we just aren’t that into it, it’s unlikely to be featured.

• Relevance — we’re excited about all kinds of road and gravel cycling biking, from WorldTour racing to bikepacking. That being said, we won’t post a press release for your electric recumbent racing tandem bike, unless you’re going to race the Tour de France with it. (please don’t do this)

• Technical issues — low resolution imagery, poor grammar, CAPS LOCK, excessive vertically oriented images, etc. all contribute to the decision to reject content.

• Language — racism, misogyny, hate-speech, or any other sort of bigoted language or behaviour is unacceptable on CyclingTips. That includes song lyrics in submitted videos.

• Advertorials — we appreciate brands building high quality press releases on the CyclingTips platform, but do not post anything that is written to mimic an endorsement from our technical editors. Eg. no 3rd party “interviews,” CyclingTips logos, or anything else that may mislead readers.

• Crowdfunding — we generally don’t publish crowdfunding stories, fundraisers, or press releases. Sorry, but there are so many of these we need to draw the line.

• Shady shit — no affiliate links, user tracking, plagiarized or stolen content, 3rd party contests, unverified product claims, links to other media sites, etc.

• Obtrusive watermarks or borders — we respect photographers using clean watermarks on their images, but we don’t post any stories with large, obtrusive watermarks on the images. Please don’t put any borders on your images.

• Ads alongside your articles — As you know we work with many advertising partners and we serve ads on almost all pages of the site as a paid service. This is done through an ad server which serves different ads to different people. We apologise in advance if an ad for a competing business or product is served alongside your article. This is a free service to the industry and not an exclusive arrangement.

Support

If you run into any issues, contact support@cyclingtips.com with a link to your article and any other information or resources our team might need to help assess your content. We deal with a high volume of emails, so if your question is answered in this guide we may not be able to respond.