How To Use HARO For Digital PR Links: Benefits, Tactics, and Tips

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Help a Reporter Out (HARO) is an amazing tool for digital PR.

It can help you get high-quality backlinks, build brand awareness, and establish thought leadership.

But the platform is more competitive than ever.

You need a strategic approach to stand out from the crowd and get your responses picked up by journalists.

In this guide, we’ll cover:

  • What HARO is
  • The benefits of using it
  • How to get started

What Is HARO?

HARO is a platform that connects journalists and bloggers with expert sources and subject matter experts.

FATJOE graphic explaining What Is HARO

Journalists seeking expert insights for their articles submit queries on the platform, and experts in relevant industries respond.

HARO works via an email system. When you sign up as a source, you’ll receive emails detailing the latest queries submitted by journalists.

The platform benefits both parties. Journalists get authoritative sources for their content, and experts get to be featured in reputable media outlets.

Benefits Of Using HARO For SEO And Marketing

HARO is an invaluable tool for digital marketing and SEO. Here are three primary benefits:

Enhanced SEO And Brand Visibility

HARO can help you obtain backlinks from authoritative sources. These high-quality links play a critical role in search ranking.

Google uses backlinks to judge the credibility and relevance of your website. Generally, the more backlinks a website has, the more traffic it will attract from Google.

The quality of the links also matters. Securing great links from high authority sites is a central aim of parasite SEO, one of the highest ROI SEO tactics out there!

More high-quality HARO links = higher search engine ranking and increased organic traffic.

Thought Leadership

Demonstrating your expertise on HARO can help you establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry.

Getting featured in reputable publications will boost your credibility in the eyes of potential customers.

You can add a “Featured In” section on your website showing the logos of the publications you have appeared in. It’s a powerful form of social proof.

Content Creation Opportunities

Your responses can often be repurposed in a blog post, newsletter, and other marketing material. You can amplify your message across multiple platforms.

How To Get Started With HARO

Don’t want the stress and hassle of managing HARO pitches yourself? Use FATJOE’s HARO link building service!

HARO can be super-useful for your SEO campaigns. It’s one of the best link building strategies.

Here’s how to get started.

Setting Up Your Profile On HARO

The first step is to create an account and set up your profile.

This will impact the types of queries you receive and how you can access them.

Create An Account

Head to the HARO website, click “SIGN UP,” and fill in your details.

HARO account creation

After submitting your information, check your email for a confirmation link.

Click on the provided link to activate your HARO account.

HARO account activation

Personalize Your Profile

You’ll now be able to log in to your HARO account.

Make sure your details are correct, and you selected the right account type.

HARO account details

Scroll down, and you’ll be able to see your HARO preferences.

You’ll automatically be subscribed to the Master HARO list.

HARO preferences

But you can opt to receive queries related to specific niches. This will allow you to access HARO queries on those topics faster.

If you upgrade to a paid subscription, you can use keywords to make sure you only receive emails for relevant queries – you do have to move to a paid subscription to allow this, sadly.

Understand The Different Types Of HARO Subscriptions

HARO offers four subscription levels.

HARO subscription tiers

A free HARO account is a good entry point to explore the platform. But access is limited to a small number of daily queries.

The Standard subscription provides a few additional benefits. You can set up one keyword filter and receive text alerts. It also allows you to search through all the available queries currently listed on the HARO platform.

You can also create a profile to add to your responses and speed up the pitching process.

Upgrading to the Advanced subscription gives you priority access to queries, more keyword filters, and more profiles.

There’s also a Premium subscription. If you are an agency looking to offer digital PR services then this tier is an absolute must.

Choose The Right Queries And Submit Great Pitches

Once you’ve signed up, you’ll receive daily emails containing queries from journalists and bloggers seeking expert insights.

You want to prioritize the queries that directly match your areas of expertise or those of your clients. Take the time to understand the query’s context, scope, and requirements.

Respond To Queries Quickly

Journalists and bloggers often work under tight deadlines. When you find a HARO query that matches your expertise, respond as quickly as possible.

You can use HARO’s keyword alert feature to stay on top of incoming queries. It also pays to regularly check your account and search for relevant keywords and topics.

Act quickly to capitalize on opportunities before they slip away. You have to be on the ball and ready to manage the requests at any time to get the best results.

Write High-Quality Responses

Clarity and conciseness are key to a great HARO pitch.

Your goal is to share well-structured and valuable information without any unnecessary fluff.

Journalists receive a ton of responses to queries. You can stand out and make their job a lot easier by keeping your response concise.

Draw from your experience and knowledge to deliver insights that can enrich the content piece.

Always use a respectful and polite tone. A professional approach can enhance your reputation as a source, potentially leading to more collaborations in the future.

Use Compelling Subject Lines

When your email lands in the journalist’s inbox, it will likely be sat amongst a bunch of other responses.

Agencies across the board are offering digital PR and HARO services, so you need to work hard to stand out among the crowd.

So you need a compelling subject line that stands out and establishes credibility.

First, make it clear which query you are responding to. Journalists typically write for several publications and may have multiple open HARO queries.

Next, establish your credibility. That could be your job title or company.

Wrap up the subject line with something unique and eye-catching. Power adjectives can boost your open rates and get more journalists to read your pitches.

HARO – Job Title/Expertise + Powerful Adjective + Topic

For example, let’s say you are responding to a query on business sustainability tips.

HARO – Example Company CEO’s Practical Sustainability Tips for Business Owners

You can test different template subject lines to see which works best for your niche.

Building Quality Backlinks With HARO

Acquiring backlinks is one of the biggest benefits of HARO.

When journalists link back to your website as a reliable source, it signals to search engines that your site is credible and trustworthy.

High-quality backlinks contribute to your website’s domain authority and can boost your search engine rankings. Google has confirmed that backlinks are one of the top three ranking factors.

Target Queries From High-Authority Websites

Prioritize queries from high-authority relevant websites in your HARO link building strategy.

In most cases, you’ll see which media outlet the HARO journalist is writing for before you submit a response. You can check the domain authority of the website using SEO tools like Semrush or Ahrefs:

Business Insider overview

If the query is for a leading publication, go above and beyond to deliver a value-packed response.

A link from a high authority website in your niche could be super-beneficial for your SEO and brand credibility.

Clients also love these kinds of links, so it’s really worth your while putting in the work to secure them when they are available.

Acquiring Organic Traffic

Getting featured in media outlets is a great way to expand your brand’s reach and strengthen your digital PR efforts.

The journalist will usually include a link to your homepage or social profile in the article.

But there are sometimes opportunities to include links to other pages on your website. For example, the query below is requesting marketing case studies:

HARO query

This would be a great opportunity to get an authority link to a case study or blog post on your website.

You can create a pathway for organic referral traffic to flow to your site and into your sales funnel.

Build Relationships

Getting featured in an article can start an ongoing relationship with a journalist. You can become a repeat source and get featured in multiple articles.

Once the piece has been published, share it on your social channels and tag the journalist.

Sharing media coverage can be a great way to impress your network. But it can also catch the eye of the journalist and make you more memorable.

You can also send a short follow-up email thanking the journalist and expressing interest in sharing your insights for future articles.

Try to build relationships with journalists to maximize the value of every HARO opportunity.

Outsource Your HARO

Sifting through hundreds of queries every day isn’t easy. It’s a significant time investment – even more so when HARO is just one aspect of your digital marketing campaign.

Using HARO link building services can be an effective solution.

You can save time and energy by using an external partner to handle your HARO outreach.

Rapid response times are key to being featured and earning media mentions. A HARO specialist can monitor inquiries daily and identify relevant queries so you don’t miss out on opportunities.

They can pitch your expertise to reporters with valuable insights and eye-catching subject lines to help your submissions stand out.

Capitalizing On HARO Opportunities

Succeeding with HARO requires consistency and persistence. Regularly check your HARO queries and move quickly on new opportunities.

If you’re not able to dedicate the time, outsourcing HARO is the way to go.

Each placement you secure will contribute to your credibility. You can boost your SEO performance and position yourself as an authority in your industry.

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