Four Ways to Find Expert Sources to Flesh out Your Stories

An expert is only a few clicks away

Manny Otiko
3 min readJul 19, 2022


Photo by Igor Vetusko

If you’re a media professional working on a story, you’re going to want to find an expert to buttress your points. Expert opinions ad more weight to your story. It’s one thing for you to state your point, but it’s another thing when someone who’s worked in the field backs it up with his own expert opinion.

So where do you go about finding these people? As someone who’s worked in the media industry for several decades, here are some of the resources that I’ve picked up over the years.


This stands for Help a Reporter Out (HARO.) It was created by PR guru Peter Shankman more than 10 years ago and is now owned by Cision. Haro is an email service that goes out three times a day. Each email contains story queries from journalists who are looking for experts. Thousands of public relations professionals read these emails and they are all looking for outlets to place their clients. This makes things easy for journalists who are looking for experts to quote in their next story.

I’ve often used the service and had excellent results. In fact, I’m surprised when it doesn’t work. The main problem with HARO is that you end up getting flooded with experts and quickly have to tell them to turn your query off.

HARO is also a must-read for PR professionals looking for opportunities for their clients.

Social Media

When I’m working on a story, social media is the second source I go to. Apart from posting my request on HARO, I also post it on all my social media including Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. I haven’t posted queries on Instagram yet but that might be something I will try in the future. (Instagram is geared towards photo sharing, so I’m not sure how that would work.)

I have more than 10,000 followers on my Facebook page and 10,000 on my Twitter account too, so I have fairly good reach. I’ve had…



Manny Otiko

Manny Otiko writes about race, politics and sports. He has been published in Salon and LA Weekly. Follow him on Twitter @mannyotiko.