If you’re a reporter looking for an interview source or someone looking for media exposure, there’s no better place to turn than HARO. I think what Peter Shankman has done with the HARO site is nothing short of phenomenal. But Peter can only do so much. He can get the word out for you but then it’s up to you to do the rest.
Last year I put out a request for panelists for the Second Annual All Womens’ Social Media Summit. The good thing is I was inaundated with emails from all over the country and Canada. What was disturbing to me, however, was the fact that some responses came with everything BUT what I considered to be most important: CONTACT INFORMATION.
Some people wrote LONG explanations of what they do and a couple of people told me I could google their name to learn more about them.
Here are some tips I would recommend when responding to HARO:
1) Include your contact information. This includes phone number(s) and an email address.
2) Do not tell someone to google your name during the initial screening process, especially if you haven’t supplied any other information.
3) If the reporter has included their name in their query, you should address them by name when responding. It makes it more personable. And make sure it’s the RIGHT name. Someone responded to my query with a “Hi Barbara” when my real name was clearly indicated right above their response.
4) Do not direct someone to your website if you haven’t included other contact information. People do not have time to search out your contact information.
5) Keep your response simple and to the point. If you’ve written a book or spoken on a topic that has nothing whatsoever to do with the subject matter, it’s not important to mention it. In my case, I wanted to know what would make you a good social media panelist.
The important thing to remember is to make sure you put your best message out there with the best contact information