Corrections or additions?
Prepared for August 16, 2000 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All
Free Press: Christie’s Publicist
When Susan Young was a news anchor at a radio
station, she would get a hundred faxes a day, most of them useless.
Maybe just three of them might get on the air. Worst of all was when
she was on minute-to-minute deadlines for morning drive news —
and the newsroom fax would get tied up by a picture of a CEO and a
caption saying the stock had jumped a fraction. At best, this fax
was futile. At worst, it could call the credibility of the publicist
Now — with the experience of 10 years in radio and three years
in the governor’s office — Young aims to teach entrepreneurs and
would-be publicists how to write for the news, effectively pitch
and handle crisis communications. Susan Young Media Relations presents
a three-hour workshop, "How to Get Free Press: Tips and Techniques
for Strategic Media Relations," on Thursday, August 17, at 9 a.m.
at the Ramada on Route 1 South. Cost: $295. Call 732-613-4790.
Young majored in mass communications at Quinnipiac University in
Class of 1984, and started out in radio as on-air anchor and news
director in New Jersey and New York. "I won awards from the
Press and the New Jersey Broadcasting Association for my feature on
Dick Zimmer, who had just won a seat in Congress. I got some tape,
and he gave me such good comments that I made it into a feature that
ran in two segments," says Young.
For WMQR in Somerset, one of her favorite sources was Christie
then a county freeholder. "She went on to different things and
I went on to different things. I had her home number, she called me,
I called her, she was always very forthright with information. She
was always nice and still is," says Young. When Whitman was
governor, Young served a three-year stint from 1994 to 1997 as head
of the governor’s office of radio and television. "We used to
call her One-take Whitman. Our office was above her office. They
her for 15 minutes for a taping and in 60 seconds she was out the
Then Young co-founded a software development company, took a
crash course in sales and marketing, and sold the product on the
across nine states. That was an eye opener, she says, and excellent
experience for any writer, freelancer, or publicist because,
as she points out, "you are basically selling your stories."
After working as public relations director for the New Jersey ARC,
she has opened her own business (www.sueyoungmedia.com).
So what will her students learn about what makes news? "What
a lot of people, what is interesting, what has a creative hook to
it," says Young. "I give them insight."
the people, the selection process, the impact on the community?
you think it is ho-hum, so will everyone else," says Young.
were selected for the honor from 1,000 applicants.
of the Columbine tragedy, tell good news about good kids in our
Week, maybe something is going on in the schools or in nursing homes,
such as a public screening. Or use a glaucoma statistic."
in a way that will make someone want call you back. For instance,
Young’s card has the inscription "Spin Doctor," and her voice
mail says "We make headlines and beat deadlines."
is a totally different animal from print," says Young. For radio,
use sound bites. For television, use visuals, such as an old man going
to the eye screening.
even as a reminder that even the most skillful publicity campaign
can go awry, Young tells — with vitriol — about a daily
reporter who attended one of her press conferences and, says Young,
"totally destroyed" the story. "They missed the whole
point," she says. "She missed the whole lead."
In addition to samples of her work, Young’s hand-outs will include
samples of a media advisory, press release, and letter to the editor
or op-ed article, plus instructions on how to write a press release
that she says publicists should tape to their walls. What she won’t
include in the course packet is her own list of media contacts,
accumulated over the years. Says Young: "I just don’t give it
— Barbara Fox
Some companies offer extended job search services from
an outplacement agency to their downsized employees. Some do not.
If you are conducting your job search without the armor of expert
advice, you can sign up for free three-day workshops sponsored by
the Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Greater Mercer County.
People in managerial, technical, or professional fields can attend
these workshops taught by specialists from the New Jersey Department
of Labor at the JFCS conference wing, 707 Alexander Road, Suite 102.
The program is open to the public and is free (thanks to a grant from
the United Way of Greater Mercer County) but preregistration is
To register call 609-987-8100.
The seminars are Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday, August 21, 23, and
24, from 9:30 to 3 p.m. On the agenda: How to plan and conduct a job
search, how to use job-finding resources, how to cope with the
stresses of job loss, unemployment, and job seeking, and how to assess
one’s opportunities and skills.
If you are collecting unemployment benefits you may
be eligible for an intensive six-week, 60-hour daytime training
for would-be entrepreneurs at Mercer County Community College. Funding
for this course may be available. The Self Employment Assistance
includes these topics: Developing Business and Marketing Plans, Taxes,
Record Keeping, and Legal Formation. Call 609-586-4800, extension
3530 or extension 3602.
Those who do not qualify for financial assistance pay an $800 fee
for the course, and its credits can apply to the Certificate in
In today’s job market, recruiting can be tough. No
what the scale of your recruiting campaign, the basic elements of
the campaign are the same and the goal is simple: Deliver the most
compelling message to the largest concentrations of potential
in order to draw them into your applicant pool, says Rainmaker
Bruce Tulgan, author of a new book, "Winning the Talent
The four basic elements of an effective campaign are:
considered unpaid media.
or television commercial.
Try to call 100 times the number of applicants you want. To minimize
your recruiting work, think about paying existing employees cash
for new recruits.
news/publicity tie-in in order to intrigue your target audience.
slip away. Create a skill or performance-based description of the
job. Ask the applicants to turn in proposals that will predict how
they will add value to your business. Get a "sample" of each
If possible, design a try-out preview, to give applicants an honest
look at what the job will be like.
"In the workplace of the future," says Tulgan, "you are
not looking for people to join the family and climb the ladder.
you need people who bring specific skills to the table, are able to
get up to speed quickly, and can begin making contributions right
away. And you can’t trust letters of reference, because everybody
is afraid of getting sued."
Corrections or additions?
This page is published by PrincetonInfo.com
— the web site for U.S. 1 Newspaper in Princeton, New Jersey.