The service delivers companies – called “sources” – a list of queries three times a day. As a source, you “pitch” your answer in hopes of getting included in the final content.
HARO can be a great way to land earned media placements and backlinks to your website. (That’s a huge SEO win.)
Problem is, there’s no guarantee that your pitch will get you included. And you usually don’t hear why. It’s either a “yes” or … nothing.
So, how do you land more HARO placements? We asked public relations, communications and marketing experts for their tips for better results.
HARO Basics for Sources
- HARO emails go out three times a day at 5:35 a.m., 12:35 p.m. and 5:35 p.m.
- Sources can choose the “Master HARO” email with everything, or specialized categories. Most B2B companies subscribe to “Business and Finance.”
- Paid plans (starting at $19/month) give additional features, like keyword alerts and extra time to pitch.
- You can sign up for HARO today at helpareporter.com.
Be Fast & Be Interesting
My HARO pitch approval success rate goes up when I respond the same day the request came in. It helps when I write answers that are compelling, unique, concise and witty. No one likes to quote boringness or long-windedness.
Boyd Norwood, Nozzle
Be Quotable & Grammatically Correct
Reporters are on tight deadlines. You’re much more likely to land a HARO placement if they can copy and paste what you wrote into their post. Ideally, keep your responses short with one-to-three sentence tips. If the reporter requires a longer answer, you should proofread it and make sure that it’s grammatically correct.
Axel DeAngelis, NameBounce
Make It Easy on the Writer
My No. 1 HARO tip is to proofread your pitches before you hit send. Editors are looking for quotable soundbites they can quickly insert into articles. They don’t have the time to revise badly written pitches.
Bottom line: People are busy. Don’t make them work to include your quote.
Chloe Brittain, Opal Transcription Services
Get Personal with Your HARO Pitch
If you can, address the writer by name. This creates a friendly tone to your email and gets their attention.
Also, you’ll land more HARO placements if you include everything the writer asks for in their pitch. That includes URLs, headshots, etc. Make it easy for them to write the piece they have in mind.
Claire Shaner, ZooWho
Don’t Give Teaser Answers
Writers don’t want to reach out to you to get additional information. Give a complete answer and don’t ask them to reach out for more. HARO isn’t a sales process. It’s a transaction. Writers want to get sources, write their articles and move on with as little hassle as possible.
Travis Price, Licensed Income Protection Agent
Give Specific Examples
As a CEO, I can give specific stories that not every HARO pitch can include. The more specific I am, the better my chances of landing a placement.
Reuben Yonatan, GetVoIP
Offer Something Different
To land more HARO placements, the most important thing is to offer a unique perspective. Don’t offer responses that everyone in the field can give. Focus on your competitive advantage and use it in your pitch.
Daniela Andreevska, Mashvisor
Make HARO an Everyday Task
I find I land more HARO placements when I respond to the journalist soon after getting the email. Leaving it too late means that others have already had a chance to cover the points you want to make.
Make HARO submissions a priority in your day-to-day tasks. If generating PR coverage or getting quality backlinks are goals, don’t put it off.
Fiona Kay, Nigel Wright
Provide Actual Value
Choose queries that are relevant to you and your field. Don’tt try answering all of them, just focusing on quantity. Provide real value and don’t promote your business.
Nikola Baldikov, Brosix
Show Why You’re Qualified
To land more HARO placements, lead with a brief bio of yourself. Explain why you’re qualified to answer the query. This bio should include a description of what you do and accomplishments that prove you know what you’re talking about.
For example, if you’re answering a HARO about sales funnel management, lead with how many sales funnels you’ve managed. Include numbers or qualitative descriptions of your success.
Nicolas Straut, Fundera
Get to the Point
If you want to land more HARO placements, answer the questions directly. I’ve been in the reporter’s shoes before, and a lot of people send five-page stories that beat around the bush. If a reporter has to read for 10 minutes before getting to the answer, your email is going to the bin. State the answer immediately and then add more information later if necessary.
Cassy Aite, Hoppier