Helping a Reporter Out has Never Been Easier through HARO

Do you ever find yourself in that situation where you’re working on an article and you need to get a hold of an authoritative resource? Have you searched endlessly in the search engines for what you need only to be sorely disappointed with the results? And what happens when you do find a resource? Now you have to take an extra step and contact them which–depending upon how quick their turnaround is you might miss your deadline.

Started through a Facebook group by PR guru Peter Shankman, HARO is a great solution to your “need for resources” woes. I’ve used HARO for this blog, an upcoming five day marathon of articles about the most common questions I hear from writers. Up until that point, I found it very difficult to get agents to respond to me, but through HARO I got so many responses I’m still sifting through them!

One of the reasons why I like the group so much, is because of the way that Peter manages this free service. He’s transparent, he’s real, and he advocates “being nice.” Just this morning, he mentioned to subscribers to do one nice thing every day in his introduction which is part blog, part “welcome to the community.”

This morning I thought of you, my readers, because there was a call for “Diet, Health and Cookbook Authors.” If you fit the bill, please contact me and I will be happy to send you the listing.

HARO Love gets its Own PR

Talented writer Meryl Evans is just one of thousands of people who’ve extolled the virtues of HARO through Twitter’s micro-blogging platform. As subscribers continue to climb, HARO’s “free” service has gained popularity through a contest on the list and word-of-mouth referrals. With the tagline “everyone’s an expert,” it’s a place to get free publicity and to be a part of a growing community that is creating a lot of waves. This, my dear readers, is what social media is all about.

Here’s a list of some articles you can read about HARO:

There’s a lot more on the web and in print to read if you’re interested. As you can see, the buzz has been nothing but good; I’ve really enjoyed reading Jordan Golson’s take on HARO (linked above) and its effects on the PR industry:

The story sounds strikingly similar to Craigslist’s start. Now Craigslist is blamed for snagging hundred’s of millions of dollars worth of classified ad revenue from local newspapers and sending the industry into a tailspin. The HARO mailing list, if it continues to grow and expand, could do the same to PRNewswire by using cheap technology to undercut old media models. It wasn’t the first, and it certainly won’t be the last time a long standing industry giant starts wondering if the Web could threaten their revenue.

To Join HARO

Sign Up for Help A Reporter Out

And remember, this is one of those cases where you can exploit your expertise instead of hiding it or getting lost in the word-sea of other experts. You can’t get better PR than that.

One Response to Helping a Reporter Out has Never Been Easier through HARO
  1. Meryl K. Evans

    Thanks for the mention, Monica. I posted my first reporter inquiry two weeks ago and got FABULOUS quotes. In fact, I just received the draft of the magazine in which the article will appear. It looks great and it would not have happened without HARO. It allowed me to find resources that I wouldn’t find using a search engine.

    I know about “that” other service that does a similar thing only online instead of by email. I never used it — I found it complicated and just never bothered to visit the site when I needed sources for an article.

    Peter deserves all of his successes. He’s an all-around great person who also encourages helping others (nonprofits and humanity in general). We need more folks like him.



Monica Valentinelli is a writer, editor, and game developer. Her portfolio includes stories, games, comics, essays, and pop culture books.

In addition to her own worlds, she has worked on a number of different properties including Firefly, Vampire: the Masquerade, Shadowrun, Hunter: the Vigil, Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn, and Robert E. Howard’s Conan.

Looking for Monica’s books and games that are still in print? Visit Monica Valentinelli on Amazon’s Author Central or a bookstore and game store near you.

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