OK, so you play the Tuba. Write an email to the band director at all the colleges you plan to apply to. Ok, so you’re a DJ in your spare time. Lookup the campus radio station, find the email address of the person who runs the station and write an email. Don’t be shy. Frequently, these minor players will write an email to the admissions department and POOF, you’ve got an insider advocating for you. This kind of thing is much more useful than people realize.
If they bite, give them more. Try to strike up a little friendly banter. If nothing else, they might offer a tidbit of advice on how to get in and that tidbit could be the missing piece of the magical puzzle that gets you in. Take a few minutes to write one email to someone at your favorite schools each day. This technique regularly pays off big. Whatever talent or angle you can use, use it.