Slightly Off-Topic

My Re-Gift to the World: Help A Reporter Out (HARO)

By Justin Seibert| 2 Min Read | August 18, 2008

You know what’s really awesome?  When someone does all the hard work on something and then you can pass along that information and look like the good guy.

Enter Peter Shankman’s Help a Reporter Out (HARO).  Or more accurately, enter me talking about HARO.

A couple weeks ago I joined a tight-knit community of a billion or so people and found out about HARO.  Simple yet kind of revolutionary* concept, which I’ll attempt to explain without reading more through Peter’s Web site or attempting to do any kind of interview questions.  My external excuse is that Peter’s probably at the Search Engine Strategies conference.  Internally I’ll admit that I’m just lazy.

* An exaggeration, I guess.  It’s not like a bunch of new media folks got together and dumped a lot of press releases and fax machines into the Boston Harbor…yet.  You just wait!

HARO in Plain English*

Reporters write articles for publications.  Often these reporters need quotes from experts to back up what they write and make their articles more interesting.  Finding experts can be a very time consuming process and particularly difficult for obscure subjects.

* Total title rip-off of my favorite Web series, RSS in Plain English.  Also worth checking out: Zombies in Plain English.

Peter Shankman  saw the problem here and came up with a fix.  He sends out a list 3 times a day with expert requests from reporters.  Much like a regular, run-of-the-mill Zombie, I was infected by his list.  I then turned and infected other pr professional friends, who will probably infect their own circles.  Tomorrow morning, we’re going to wake up and realize this HARO Zombie catastrophe was just a dream, only to see Peter Shankman’s helicopter touch down on the news.

* Full circle.

Surely Peter is getting paid back tenfold for putting in this effort, but it still deserves being trumpeted.  Go check it out now and find interesting things for your friends and clients to speak about to get some press:


Full-Scope Online Marketing Services | justin-seibert-headshot

Written by Justin Seibert

Justin Seibert is the President of Direct Online Marketing. Justin holds a Bachelor of Arts from Vanderbilt University. He contributes a wide range of online business-oriented topics, including the subject of exporting. His contributions can be found on publications such as the Pittsburgh Business Times, AdAge, SES Magazine, and La Voz del interior. Justin and his family enjoy learning about new cultures during their travels.

View Justin Seibert's Full Bio

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