haro header

How to use HARO to Build Authority Links and Get Traffic

HARO front page

You might know that getting backlinks from high authority sources is a major factor in ranking well in search engines. Getting these links, however, can be a challenge. I will teach you how to use Haro to build authority links to your website.

You can try blindly pitching yourself to various blogs, magazines, and newspapers, but that can be a significant investment of time and energy for little to no results. What if these high authority sources came to you instead of the other way around?

A service called HARO, Help a Reporter out,  makes it happen. HARO is an excellent way to get traffic, build backlinks, and gain authority for your website or blog.

What is Haro?

The acronym stands for Help a Reporter Out. It’s a service designed to help journalists. These writers need connections to experts in various fields. The service lets them put out calls of exactly who and what they’re looking for. This allows you to send direct queries to someone who is already looking for you, a much better option than the blind pitch.

A wide array of publications use HARO on a daily basis. Including many very high quality, high authority sources, like The Huffington Post, Mashable, Time, The New York Times, Fast Company, and Good Morning America, to name a few. More than 35,000 journalists use HARO.

How to Use Haro To Get Links and Website Authority

Help a Reporter Out can have a steep learning curve and it can be time-consuming, but it’s relatively easy to use. There are different tiers of use, including both free and paid versions with monthly membership fees.

Do I use the Free vs. Paid Version

Free: Getting started with HARO is as simple as signing up with your email address on their website. Once you sign up, three emails will show up in your inbox each weekday. The emails will include 30-50 inquiries, broken down into categories like Business and Finance, Health and Fitness, and Travel.

Each inquiry includes a brief summary that lists the requirements. It also includes the publication, contact information, and a deadline. You can choose to query as many of these as you want. You contact the reporter via email.


The daily email of topics you get as a free HARO user can be overwhelming. It requires time to scan through to see if there is anything relevant to your niche. The paid version lets you focus on specific topics and areas of expertise, making it easier for you to see only what is relevant to you.

You can also create a personalized profile that you can attach to any query you send. The different levels of paid memberships also offer other perks like text alerts, early access, the ability to create more than one personal profile, and capacity to search all current inquiries. The paid version provides a small advantage over free users.

Paid membership plans start at $19/month and go up to $149/month. At the higher end levels, you get more perks like the ability to filter for several keywords, capacity to have multiple personal profiles, early access to opportunities, and support via phone and email.

It’s possible to find great benefit with the free version, but the paid memberships can make it easier to succeed.

How to Respond to a Haro Query

The keys to a pitch that will get noticed:

  • only pitch if you meet all the requirements
  • provide enough detail and follow the instructions
  • make sure you respond to each part of the journalist’s need
  • always include your brief author bio and your website link with your pitch

Your pitch should always be your highest-quality writing. Be sure to pay attention to spelling and grammar. Always proofread! Try to strike a balance of providing enough detail but being concise.

Typically, your response should only be around one paragraph (3-4 sentences) in length. The exact length will vary depending on the inquiry. Some pitches will need to be much longer and more detailed.

Typically, your response should only be around one paragraph (3-4 sentences) in length. The exact length will vary depending on the inquiry. Some pitches will need to be much longer and more detailed.

The tone of your message should always be friendly and polite. Address the journalist by name, if provided. I have found a small personal message offering to follow up or elaborate increases the chance of getting a reply.


make the pitch


The Benefits of Using Help a Reporter Out Correctly

Using Help A Reporter Out correctly will bring traffic and awareness while improving rankings and authority.

To get traffic, build backlinks, gain authority, and crank your SEO up into turbo drive, it’s important to pay attention to the source. Backlinks from some blogs may hurt you.

It’s a good idea to check the domain authority or PageRank score of a source before pitching them. Pitching high authority sources could give you a huge boost. Spend extra time on a more important potential link.

These high-quality sources, however, are almost certainly getting tons of queries from people like you. It is vital to make sure your pitch is of the utmost quality and will make you get noticed.


haro in action

You cannot expect for every pitch to land. As you get more practice with crafting the perfect pitch, you will start to get more traction. Be consistent and pitch every opportunity that is a good match for your expertise. Try to pitch sources with high domain authority and PageRank scores, in particular, but don’t always ignore the little guys.

Because the big names are going to get tons of pitches every time they put out an inquiry, these sources are harder to land. The smaller names that have decent scores are also worthy of your efforts and can help your Search Engine Optimization game.

Even if a source doesn’t use you for a particular article or piece, they may think of you in the future. A well-crafted pitch can be memorable, and that is always a good thing to be.


Other Tips For Success With Haro

Pay attention to deadlines. Reporters are often busy and working with tight deadlines. As a result, some HARO inquiries have quick deadlines. You need to stay on top of it, or you will risk missing the perfect opportunity for your website to get noticed.

The emails come around the same time each day: morning, afternoon, evening. To get the most of the service, stay on top of these emails so you can act fast.

The majority of Help a Reporter Out listings are for online publications or print/web publications but don’t brush right over the audio and visual inquiries.
Don’t forget about other forms of media included in the HARO emails like podcasts and television. You may or may not get a backlink out of these but these, sources can still bring a lot of attention and traffic.

Don’t expect a response

You likely won’t get a “rejection email.” Try not to take offense. Never contact them again to check in, as it’s a fast way to make sure they’ll never use you in the future. Instead, move on.

Not every pitch is going to win. In fact, the majority of them will fail. When HARO does produce a link, it usually has a big return. Be patient and consistent, and you will succeed.

When you help a reporter out, you’ll be helping yourself out even more. HARO should be one tool in your arsenal when trying to improve your search engine rankings and boost your traffic.

Hire a Haro and Online PR Expert

HARO can have a steep learning curve and can be very time-consuming. Still confused how to use Haro? Maximize your results by making use of my expertise and experience.

Contact me today for help using HARO as part of your online marketing SEO strategy. My SEO knowledge can contribute to further overall online marketing goals.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply