TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Setting up your account
- Applying to be a publication sourcing images through Two Bright Lights
- Filling out your publication's profile information
- How to upload your logo, badge, and profile photo
- Setting up multiple publications under one publisher
- Publication Matching Tool
- How to Update your Publication Profile
- How to Copy over your Publication Profile if you have Multiple Publications
- Receiving Submissions
- How to receive submissions
- How to create specific submission requests
- How to accept, reject or hold submissions
- How to change an estimated publication date
- Submission expiration
- How to accept a submission for the right publication if you have multiple
- Additional Questionnaires
- How to Create a Request
- How to Edit a Request
- How to Copy a Request
- How to Delete a Request
- Accepting & Publishing Submissions
- Not a Fit or On Hold Submissions
- Messaging Platform
To get started, you will first need to submit an editorial application. You can find this by clicking here, or going to twobrightlights.com, selecting 'Sign Up', selecting 'Editor', then filling out the application. We will get back to you within 1-2 business days with an update regarding your application. If you are a fit for Two Bright Lights, you will be contacted via email with the next steps to activate your account and get started.
Your publication profile is a page that all Two Bright Lights members can view to learn more about your publication(s). We recommend including information such as your estimated response time, publishing frequency, content categories and more. To update this information, click on the account avatar in the upper righthand corner of your screen, select 'My Account' then click 'Editor Profile' to update your basic publication info. Make sure to click 'Save' when you are done. To update your Publication Profile Preferences, complete the following steps linked here.
To add your logo, badge or profile photo to your account, click on the account avatar in the upper righthand corner of your screen and select 'My Account'. From here, you'll scroll to the bottom of the page and click 'Edit'. You can then add an image for your logo, badge or profile photo by hovering over the grey box and clicking on the plus (+) sign. You will then be prompted to select an image file to upload. Once you are done, scroll down to the bottom and hit 'Save'.
If you need to add a publication to your account, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the publication name, type, exclusivity and any other information you think is applicable. The TBL team will get back to you on what the next steps will be.
Our Publication Matching Tool is the underpinning of how our editors' publication profiles & requests factor into the recommended publications submitters see suggested throughout the submission process. There are 3 parts to the Publication Matching Tool: The Editor Publication Profile, the Matching Algorithm, and Matching Publications. You can read here in-depth how these elements work together to suggest the best publications for our submitters, saving time and effort on both sides of the submission process. On the submitter side, during the submission process Matching Publications can be found highlighted in an orange section once the submitter decides if they wish to submit to Exclusives or Non-Exclusives.
To update your Publication Profile, either watch this how-to video or follow these steps. To update your Publication Profile:
1) Log into Two Bright Lights and click the account avatar in the upper right-hand corner
2) Click 'My Account'
3) Click 'Account Info'
4) Click on your publication tile
5) You will be redirected to a page with 3 tabs that you will need to fill out. First, fill out your Profile Info & click 'Save'
6) Click on 'Submission Preferences'. Here you can specify your publication's desired content. Edit and 'Save'.
7) Click on 'Submission Preferences: Details'. Here your can get even more granular about the types of submissions you wish to receive. Categories include Photography Style, Setting, Style, Religion, and Ethnicity. Edit and 'Save' as necessary.
8) Your Publication Profile will now be updated and your submissions should reflect your desired preferences. If you need to update your Publication Preferences at any point simply repeat the steps and from then on your submissions should reflect these updates.
To copy Publication Preferences from one publication to another, click into the publication you wish to add an existing publication's preferences to. On the left hand side of the page under Submission Preferences: Details, click 'Copy settings from another publication' and follow the prompts. You can update as necessary once the preferences are copied over and make sure to 'Save' throughout the process.
To review your submissions, first click on your 'Submissions' tab. On this page you can view your submissions either in Grid or List view. To edit the view, click on the icon in the upper righthand corner of your screen just below your account avatar. Once you select your desired view, hover over the submission and click 'View' to see the submission details. The submission details will include the number of images, album story, tagged vendor information and more.
To create a submission request, click the 'Requests' tab then select 'Post New Request'. When the create box pops up, fill in exactly what you're looking for in a submission, including location preferences, request category, deadline or any other important details. There is no limit to the number of requests you can add and deadlines can be set for up to two months in the future.
To accept a submission, click the 'Accept' icon in the upper righthand corner of the submission. You will then be prompted to provide an estimated publication date. To reject a submission, select the 'Not A Fit icon' in the upper righthand corner of the submission. You will then be prompted to provide feedback as to why you are not accepting the submission. You can put a submission 'On Hold' if you require more information from the submitter in order to create the feature. When you put a submission 'On Hold', you will be prompted to provide a reason as to why it was put on hold. The reason and status change will then be sent to the submitter, who can update the submission with the information you requested. Please note: 'On Hold' is a temporary status, so be sure to check back on the submission.
While we encourage you to stick to the original publication date you selected and relayed to the submitter, you can change the date of the accepted submission by clicking into the submission from your 'Submissions' tab and clicking on the calendar in the upper righthand corner of the particular submission.
Any submission that has been placed 'On Hold' will automatically have 3 additional months added to its expiration. For example, an online submission that was created on January 1, 2018 and then was placed "on hold" prior to the 6 month expiration, the submission's expiration would adjust to October 1, 2018.
When you have multiple publication types, you may accept the submission for either print or online. When you click 'Accept', you will be prompted to indicate whether the submission will be published in your print or online publication.
When your publication requires additional information from the submitter about the submission, you may send an additional questionnaire to the submitter. Prior to that we encourage you to review the Client Questionnaire that was sent with the submission to see if it helps answer any of your additional questions.
To create a Request, click on the 'Requests' tab in the main menu. Click 'Create Request' and a new form will pop-up. From there you can fill our the specifics of that specific request, including location and you may use your Publication Profile Preferences as a basis. If you are looking for content outside of what your publication typically looks for, you may update your Publication Profile & Preferences for that specific request without having to change your profile overall. If you would like to preview your request to see how it would look for our submitters click 'Preview Request'. To post your request click 'Post Request'.
To edit a Request that has been previously posted, click on the 'Requests' tab in the main menu. Locate the Request your wish to edit and click 'Edit' on the right hand side of the specific request. Your will then be brought into the existing request to make updates as necessary.
To copy a Request that has been previously posted, click on the 'Requests' tab in the main menu. Locate the Request your wish to duplicate and click 'Copy' on the right hand side of the specific request. Your will then be brought to a duplicate of the existing request, which you can updates as necessary to reflect your changes.
To delete a Request that has been previously posted, click on the 'Requests' tab in the main menu. Locate the Request your wish to delete and click 'Delete' on the right hand side of the specific request. Then follow the prompts to remove the request.
The Submissions tab is home to all of the submissions that your publication has received. You can click through the different statuses (Submitted, Accepted, Published, Not a Fit, Released, and All) to sort through your received submissions. The Albums tab reflects all of your Accepted and Published submissions, so that you may review the albums in their entirety at any point in time.
The publishing calendar allows you to track which submissions are scheduled for each date. Based on the color-coding, you will know whether the submission is scheduled, past due, or has already been published.
You may only download images from submissions that you've marked 'Accepted'. To download a single image or an assortment of images, first click on the check mark icon in the upper right-hand corner of the image. Once you have selected the check mark, scroll up to the blue toolbar and click on the cloud icon. If you've selected a single image, it will download automatically. To download an entire album, hover over the album thumbnail within your 'Albums tab' and click on the cloud icon. You will be notified via email when the download is complete, however you may view the downloaded images in a zip file format under your 'Downloads' located next to the left of the chat bubble icon in the upper right hand corner of the screen.
To view all of the images that you've accepted or published, click on your 'Images' tab. You can filter the images by Favorites, Orientation, Size, Date or Category by clicking on the search bar and 'Filter' button in the upper right hand corner of the page. You can also download images from this tab by hovering over the image, clicking the check mark and then clicking on the cloud icon in the blue toolbar on the right hand side of the screen.
To use the Wordpress integration, you need to click the WordPress icon in an accepted submission, sign into your Wordpress account and the import will start automatically. Don't forget to install the Two Bright Lights Publishing Tool plugin to mark your TBL features as published as soon as they go live. The Wordpress integration helps speed up the publication process and is meant to be an easy way to import the album story, client questionnaire and photos in one step. Overall, it will help with efficiency and transferring all the needed information for the feature right from Two Bright Lights.
The Two Bright Lights Wordpress plugin will automatically mark your accepted Two Bright Lights submissions as published when they go live on your blog/website. To install the plugin, download here. Once installed, The Wordpress plugin will automatically mark your accepted Two Bright Lights submissions as published when they go live on your blog/website.
When you have published a submissions, it's important to mark it as published in the system so that all vendors are notified about the feature. To do this, open the submission, click 'Publish' in the upper right corner. If it is an online feature, you will then have the ability to paste in the link to the feature. This is an essential piece of information so that all the professionals who are part of the feature can share it with their networks.
You can put a submission 'On Hold' if you require more information from the submitter. To put a submission 'On Hold' click into your 'Submissions' tab, then click 'Submitted'. From here click into the particular album that you want to put 'On Hold' by clicking 'View'. Once in the album you can choose the status of 'On Hold' and provide a reason for the hold. Please note: On Hold is a temporary status, so be sure to check back on the submission and not leave it in this status indefinitely.
To decline a submission, or marking a submission as 'Not a Fit', click into your 'Submissions' tab, then click 'Submitted'. From here click into the particular album that you want to mark as 'Not a Fit' by clicking 'View'. Once in the album you can choose the status of 'Not a Fit' and provide a reason why it wasn't a good fit.
For any active submission that you receive from a submitter, you will have a direct line of contact with them through our onsite Messaging Platform. You and the editor can communicate back and forth directly on the platform about any specifics around the submission and can communicate up to two months after the feature has been marked as published. The messages are on a submission by submission basis so you will always know exactly which album the submitter is talking about.
There are two places that you can check your messages:
Click into the submission and click on the 'Message' button. You will be able to read and send messages there. Or click the chat bubble icon at the top right of the Two Bright Lights screen. There you will be redirected to your messaging inbox and can create, read or respond to any messages for active submissions there.
We recommend contacting submitters if you need additional information regarding a submission or if the submitter has specific questions for you about publishing specifics, such as publication date, exclusivity (when applicable), etc. Be sure to get in the happy of checking the messaging platform for new messages to stay on top of your submissions!
Photo Credit: RawPixel, Unsplash