If you are in any of the following titles describe you: a reporter, a journalist, an editor, a PR consultant, or an entrepreneur, and you have NOT heard about HARO you have obviously been living under a very large rock. HARO (an acronym for Help a Report Out) is Peter Shankman's brilliant email list aimed at connecting journalist with sources. However, HARO seems to be helping almost everyone and anyone lately.
Let me take a step back. In case you have been living under a very large rock, you might be wondering "who the heck is Peter Shankman?" Well, Peter is a man who wears many hats (including a skydiver helmet). He is an entrepreneur, a public speaker, an author, a PR pro, and an amazing social networker (among many other titles I am surely forgetting to mention). A leader in social media strategies, advertising, and creative marketing, Peter is what many aspire to be. However, you could write an entire review on Peter himself, or his book Can We Do That?! Outrageous PR Stunts That Work— And Why Your Company Needs Them but this review is for HARO so we will save those topics for later.
So... back to HARO. Peter created HARO; an opt-in email service that sends you three emails every weekday chalked full of queries. Any given email includes between 15-30 queries each and often times, many more than that. A large majority of the queries are journalists looking for a story. For example, you might see a journo from the AP looking to interview a homeowner who has had problems with their mortgage company. You might also see a query from TLC looking for someone interested on being on their make over show. You will most definitely see a query from time to time looking for loot for swag bags (like the Oscars). As you can see from my mere three examples, many people can benefit from joining HARO. You can join and receive the daily emails and you can also join and pitch yourself as a source if you are looking for a story. Oh, and it is FREE.
I know several people who have benefited from HARO, including myself. I had my own online business and anxiously awaited each HARO to see who I could pitch next (always on-topic of course). Through HARO, I was able to make several connections I know I would have never made on my own. From major national magazines to smaller online media, I was able to pitch people and companies of all types. I also know several other entrepreneurs who have signed up with Peter and advertised through HARO (he allows one paid advertised spot- which he writes himself in his own words- so it never reads like spam). The ads are included in the opening paragraph of each email list sent. Think about the benefit, this email goes out to over 50,000 people and has almost a 100% open rate!
If this review sounds like a huge plug for HARO, well it is. No I do not work from Peter (but Peter, if you're reading this- I'd LOVE to) ;) I just simply am in awe of people these days that have the creativity like Peter and don't try to rip you off. Remember I mentioned that it's free?! I am happy to help spread the word for something I believe in and that is what Peter hopes for in return. So go ahead, sign up for HARO, oh and follow him on Twitter for urgent queries that just can't wait a few hours until the next email hits the presses @skydiver.
Bonus: If you love witty humor and cats you will get an extra treat when you read your HARO emails. See for yourself.
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