What is HARO?

July 23, 2023, 10:53 a.m. in

HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, is an email-based platform that bridges journalists and experts. The service sends daily newsletters full of requests from journalists seeking knowledgeable insights on various topics. Responding is made anonymous to safeguard the journalists' contacts.

In this article, we'll provide a deeper understanding about the power of HARO. In today's PR scene, media exposure carries utmost significance. It's not only about promoting your brand anymore, it's also about sharing your brand story and establishing a solid reputation among your target audience. So let's dive in.

Defining HARO

HARO, an acronym for Help A Reporter Out, is a platform connecting journalists with sources. Founded by Peter Shankman in 2008, HARO started as a small Facebook group aimed at making it easier for journalists to find expert sources for their stories. With the expanding internet era, this small group grew into a massively successful PR platform.

The central principle of HARO lies in its straightforward approach of helping journalists gather valuable insights, while simultaneously providing businesses and individuals a chance to gain media exposure. It’s a win-win situation which makes HARO very unique in the PR industry.

Understanding the HARO process

It's essential to understand how the HARO process works to truly harness its potential. The platform operates through email alerts that are sent out three times daily, Monday to Friday. Each email contains a list of queries from numerous journalists seeking expert sources on diverse topics.

There are two sides to HARO: the sources and the journalists. Sources are the individuals or companies who provide journalists with information for their articles, while journalists are the ones who post the queries. As for the timelines? You typically have a few hours to respond to an issued query as most journalists operate under strict deadlines.

Advantages of Using HARO

Harnessing the power of HARO presents many benefits, especially for businesses and individuals seeking visibility in their respective industries. A successful HARO response can lead to a quote or mention in a reputable media outlet, driving brand exposure and increasing credibility.

In terms of cost, HARO is quite budget-friendly. Of course, there are paid subscription options, but even the free version provides a good number of query access.

To give a real-world context, consider the success story of business consultant Stacey Kehoe who, through HARO, landed a high-profile feature in Forbes. This type of exposure can catapult a brand's reputation and exposure to new heights.

Tips for successfully using HARO

Your success on HARO largely depends on your approach. First and foremost, make sure you carefully read and understand each query before responding. Make sure your response is concise, relevant, and includes your qualifications to answer the query.

Remember also to address the journalists by their names when possible, avoid including massive attachments, and be polite as you make your pitch. The medium is highly competitive so ensure you make your response unique and appealing to stand out.

For a deeper dive into tips for HARO success, check out our full guide.

Common Misconceptions about HARO

Misconceptions often hinder people from capitalizing on useful platforms like HARO, so let's clear those up. One common misconception is that HARO is only for big businesses. This is not the case at all. Even solo-entrepreneurs and SMEs can find success on the platform.

Another misconception is that HARO is too time-consuming to use. While it's true that it requires time to sift through the queries and draft responses, that's where automated tools like PR Bot come in handy in streamlining the process.


In an era where content is a powerful tool for PR and marketing, HARO proves to be a valuable asset to both journalists and sources. Through its unique system, it effortlessly bridges the gap between stories and their rightful sources. Whether you're a seasoned PR professional or a newbie, understanding and utilizing HARO could open up new channels of exposure and credibility for your brand.

It’s time to harness the power of HARO with an added advantage. Try PR Bot today – PR Bot is like your personal assistant that can alert you when the ideal query for you or your clients come in.