4 things journalists look for on HARO

PR pros, take note of this editor’s tips and submit a ‘Help a Reporter Out’ query that reporters will respond to.

Ragan Insider Premium Content
Ragan Insider Content

HARO allows reporters in need of sources to submit queries listing the subject matter and/or questions they’re writing about. From there, replies from a rich variety of experts are sent straight to the writer’s inbox, where they can review the responses and get in touch with sources who best suit their story.

Any reporter who has used HARO knows what a tremendous benefit this service can be, especially when you’re on an extremely tight deadline. But using HARO is sometimes more of a headache than it’s worth.

When you need to submit your story by the end of the day, how can you possibly sort through the 87 responses that came in overnight, and how many of them are actually useful?

My colleagues and I have used HARO extensively for some of our Business News Daily articles, and the responses we receive to our queries usually range from, “This is perfect and exactly what I’m looking for,” to, “What the heck was this person thinking when they submitted their answer?”

Then there are the in-between answers: the pretty decent sources who answered your questions, but someone else phrased it better—or the person whose background is a perfect fit, but will only discuss answers via phone when you don’t have time for a call before deadline.

To read the full story, log in.
Become a Ragan Insider member to read this article and all other archived content.
Sign up today

Already a member? Log in here.
Learn more about Ragan Insider.