What I'm Planning on Doing and Why?
I’ve been receiving HARO emails (Business and Finance requests) for a few months now. They hit my inbox three times a day and usually contain around twenty or so subjects to look through. While the majority of requests are about issues that I’m not qualified to share my opinion on, I will generally see one to three per day where I feel like I can make a valuable contribution.
I'm currently growing a company called HappyAR. It's a SaaS product that helps make the invoice collection process faster and easier. Our goal is to help other companies by providing seamless workflows, better team visibility, and protection against people not paying on time.
This is my first software company. Prior to this, I helped launch a video production company, staffing firm, demand generation company, and a few other smaller projects and spin-offs. I have experience in angel investing and commercial real estate, and prior to starting my own companies, I worked in a variety of industries and helped advise for-profit and non-profit companies. My LinkedIn profile has a good summary of my background.
Based on my experience and the volume of HARO requests I believe I qualify to contribute to, I think I'll be able to submit 100 responses in the first quarter of 2022 so that I can summarize my results in Q2.
I'd like to generate more organic web traffic and exposure for HappyAR as we grow it. I'd like for this work to generate high-quality backlinks from reputable outlets. I'd really like for the outreach to result in long-term relationships with journalists that I can stay in touch with. Last, but certainly not least, I want to see if this effort is a viable marketing opportunity for HappyAR and if we can measure the results based on the number of new clients we're able to tie back into the work.
And at the end of this, I'll provide all of the results and methodology for anyone to review and critique.
What is HARO?
HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, connects journalists and bloggers with relevant expert sources to meet journalists’ demanding deadlines and enable brands to tell their stories.
HARO distributes more than 50,000 journalist queries from highly respected media outlets each year. Its straightforward pitching process allows sources to find topics related to their expertise, industry, or experience while allowing journalists and bloggers to spend more time writing and less time sourcing. HARO reaches more than 1 million sources and 75,000 journalists and bloggers
This service is part of Cision: a leading global provider of earned media software and services to public relations and marketing communications professionals.
Setting up Resources for HARO
Here's the process I'm going to follow this quarter.
- I created a /HARO page on our website and will include this direct link in my responses.
- I'm going to add more resources on that page to make the journalists' jobs easier. I will include my social media links, quick bio, a photo of me, permission to use and edit my copy as they need, company blurbs, and contact information. This should save me a lot of time since I won't have to repeat the work over and over.
- I'm going to create a general template where I can simply add my actual content each time before sending it. I'll include the request information in the subject line so that it's easy to identify by the recipient.
- When responding to an inquiry, I'm going to make sure to send a thoughtful response.
- At the same time, I need to give them something that they can literally cut and paste into their article and make their job as easy as possible.
- After sending, I will try to connect with the writer on LinkedIn and send a note saying that I'm available for additional help.
When and How I’ll Measure Results
I'm going to make this a Q1 initiative and will be writing and posting my results in Q2, probably in May. By that time I hope that some of the 100 contributions I will have made will have resulted in quality backlinks.
I'll share all of that information along with an estimate of the value of the project versus other uses of time. What I'm hoping is to give other business owners an idea of the value of this type of work, for either DIY or to source it out to a writer that can communicate your ideas faster and easier.
- I'll track my time, share those stats, and comment on if I think the effort was worth it for me.
- I'll try to provide a link to all of the requests and responses I sent. I'll likely post these on our website.
- I'll share my opinion on if HARO Advanced ($49/mo.) is worth it or not.
- I'll probably write out some best practices I learned and may create a short video highlighting some of these if they are valuable.
Hopefully, you'll see my name quoted in The New York Times this quarter.
Wish me luck!
Founder – HappyAR // Call or text me: 850.HAPPYAR