Great question! The first step is to make sure you have all your material ready and that you've given yourself enough lead time. The ideal option here is to hire a publicist (most PR campaigns start 8-weeks ahead of album release date, so be sure to get in touch 12+ weeks in advance), but if you're DIY-ing it, you'll still need to give yourself plenty of lead time. Ideally that same 8 weeks. More on that later.
First things first—to begin to properly promote an album release, you need to have all your mastered tracks, at least 3 hi-res promo photos for press to use, and a solid bio ready to go. If you're doing your own PR, you'll also want to write up a compelling press release about the album, and have private streams to send to press for review. Never attach MP3s or photos to an email. Always use something like Dropbox.
When it comes to pitching, this is why many bands prefer to hire a publicist—relationships are everything in this industry, and if you're pitching cold to people you have no connection with, you're less likely to get a response. However, by giving yourself the lead time needed (IE making sure you send them the album BEFORE it drops rather than after—most won't look at it after), doing some work on relationship building, and following the submission guidelines on their site, plus always personalizing the email in some way, you increase your chances.
Don't be afraid to follow up once or twice if you don't hear from them, and remember, if you do receive coverage, always thank the blog, promote it on your socials, and remember to tag the outlet.
Angela Mastrogiacomo is a blogger turned publicist. As the founder of Muddy Paw PR and music blog Infectious Magazine, she works with exceptional emerging artists to tell their stories through the use of guest blogs, interviews, and spotlight features. Muddy Paw artists have seen placements on Alternative Press, Noisey, Idobi, Substream, New Noise, and many more. Follow Angela on Twitter or Instagram @Angela_Mastro or reach her at email@example.com