Corrections or additions?
These articles by Kathleen McGinn Spring were prepared for the May
22, 2002 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
How to Grab Ink for Your Business
Tracie Ecclesine Ivie knows a thing or two about
what gets into the newspaper — and why. A third generation
her grandfather owned a weekly newspaper in Maryland. Her parents,
both journalists, met in the NBC newsroom. Ivie herself, who has taken
journalism courses at Cornell, New York University, and the New
has experience as a writer, an editor, and a corporate writer.
On Wednesday, May 29, at 7:30 a.m. Ivie speaks on "How to Connect
with the Media Through Your Writing" at a roundtable discussion
sponsored by the Hunterdon Chamber of Commerce. The roundtable is
on many facets of connectivity, including connecting with clients
on the Internet and in face-to-face encounters, and connecting with
big business. Cost: $20. Call 908-735-5955.
Ivie began her writing career in the corporate world, and then went
out on her own, freelancing for a number of publications, including
Working Woman and Popular Photography. She is the co-author of Country
Inns of America, a popular guide that was the first to send writers
and photographers to sample and evaluate inns, and its sequel, Country
Inns of America Cookbook.
Going from the quaintly retro to technology that was then cutting
edge, Ivie next became contributing editor to Video magazine, writing
about the media at the time when television was in turmoil over the
introduction of VCRs into households. From magazines, she moved on
to newspapers, working for the Hunterdon County Democrat as a writer
and an editor and then editing the Hunterdon Observer. A year and
a half ago, seeking more flexible hours and planning to write a book,
she went out on her own again, working as a freelancer for a number
of New Jersey newspapers.
Ivie’s insider information is a boon to businesses trying to get their
names in print. And, she says, this exposure is a goal for which every
company should strive.
"You know how they say a picture is worth 1,000 words?" she
asks. "Well, an article is worth 25 ads. And it’s free!" She
knows this is true because when she was a writer she would frequently
get calls from people about whom she had written. "They would
say `The phone never stopped ringing.’ Or `The event was sold
A feature article, she says, can launch a new business.
Okay, how does a company snag a feature? Partly, Ivie admits, it’s
luck. As an example, she says she was once desperate for a Valentine’s
Day feature. Casting about for ideas, she studied her newspaper’s
events calendar and saw that a husband and wife team were set to sing
at a local event. She called them, and uncovered a love story full
of human interest angles. The singers never expected a feature
and it was just by chance that they got one. That’s the lucky part.
But the story illustrates an even more important point. Had the event
at which the couple was singing not been listed in the paper, she
never would have found them.
Always list every event in every community newspaper, trade paper,
and association newsletter, says Ivie. That is one way to get a
name out. Others include:
ideas from press releases, items on Internet sites, phone calls,
reports, invitations, and, says Ivie, conversations overheard in the
check-out line. The last can be hard to arrange, but the others are
introducing a new product — its fifth in as many months —
send the news via a press release. Only call an editor, Ivie counsels,
if the news is huge.
to be a cranky lot. Never, but never, arrive unannounced in a newsroom
to tell one that your company is about to add its 13th vice president
or unveil its 14th variety of ketchup. When calling, be aware of
A good way to find out a particular newspaper’s deadline is to call
the paper’s receptionist and ask. Another way is to find out what
day a weekly paper hits the newsstands, and then count back a day
or two. With dailies, Ivie says a good time to call is in the morning,
after reporters have settled in, but before they become too crazy.
In any and every case, it is important to ask if the editor or
is busy and if it would be convenient for him to speak with you for
a few minutes.
you would like to see your company’s name. Soon enough, says Ivie,
you’ll see an item, slap your head, and say "`That article could
have been about my company.’" That ah-ha moment means you have
found the section in which items about your company are most likely
to run. Check to see who wrote the article or who edited the section,
and address your faxes, E-mails, or phone calls to him.
— imagination, interesting ideas, and information. These
she has found, add up to ink. To get some of that ink have something
to say, and find an irresistible way to say it — in other words,
an angle. A company anniversary may be ho-hum, but if the anniversary
makes it the oldest dairy or printing company in the state, or if
the owner is the fifth generation to milk the cows or run the presses,
you have a story that is harder to turn down.
Related to the angle is the hook. Editors like hooks. An example could
be National Dairy Week or the anniversary of the invention of the
printing press. If your company’s big event coincides with such a
date, you have a better chance of interesting an editor. Do your
and find out.
says Ivie, but putting your business to work for a good cause can
get press attention. Donating a portion of proceeds to a health
or working alongside your employees in a community betterment project
can get press attention. "Editors are cynical and overworked,"
says Ivie, "but under it, they can’t resist helping."
opening, staff promotion, new product, charity event, interesting
fact about an employee (made the Olympic wrestling team, swam across
the Delaware in three minutes, got another patent), anniversary, blood
drive, concert on company grounds, and better-than-expected quarterly
results. And, Ivie stresses, send all of the above to every single
publication that might possibly be interested.
Remember, ink is valuable.
The real secret, perhaps, is that newspapers and trade publications
need you as much as you need them. They have all those pages to fill,
after all. In that vein, pounce on holidays and on almost any day
in the summer. Big business events tend to dry up at those times,
and the news item the editor tossed in the trash in September may
just be perceived as a great treasure in the days surrounding Memorial
Day or the dog days of August.
The ninth annual New Jersey Society of Certified Public
Accountants holds its annual convention Wednesday and Thursday, May
29 and 30 at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus. Cost:
$35 for one day, $50 for both days. Call 973-226-4494 or register
The first session, at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, May 29, is an economic
a much quoted market analyst, speaks on the latest economic
and key trends.
Following Wachtel’s talk, concurrent sessions look at "The Five
Steps in Developing a Successful Asset Allocation Program,"
Recovery: Key Considerations to Ensure Survival," and "Putting
Websites to Work in Your Small & Mid-Size CPA Practices." Speakers
New York; and
Afternoon sessions include "Putting the Internet to Work for
"Excel Data Analysis & Financial Reporting Features,"
Every CPA Should Know About Business Insurance," and "The
Paperless Audit: A View of the Future." Speakers include
Bodner of Creative Solutions in Dexter, Minnesota;
of PC Ed in Cranford;
in Colonia; and
of Richardson Media & Technologies in New Canaan, Connecticut, speaks
on "Technology Overview: An Update on Emerging Trends." His
talks centers on his vision of both the near and longer-term future
as it relates to technologies important to the accounting profession.
Topics include a review of last year’s predictions, current trends
in hardware, software, and communications, and emerging technologies
that will help bring these trends to reality.
The Internet has brought up-to-the-second radar weather
forecasts, up-to-date movie listings for ‘burgs big enough to support
only a two-screen theater, Instant Messages from grandma, lots of
porn (rumor has it), and in-depth research on everything from starting
an avocado farm to manufacturing a cutting-edge zipper. It has also
brought legal conundrums and a host of privacy concerns.
On Wednesday, May 29, beginning at 8 a.m., at the Frist Campus Center,
the Princeton University Program in Law and Public Affairs presents
an all-day conference on "The Future of Internet Regulation: Open
Access, Private Rights, and Public Values." Speakers include
Allard, a partner in Latham & Watkins;
of law at Yale;
of legal policy, United States Justice Department;
Eisgruber, director, program in law and politics, Princeton
and many more. Cost: Free for Princeton University students, faculty,
and staff; $100 for alumni; and $300 for all others. Call
Topics are arranged in four areas of interest:
the Internet intended to create an end-to-end network: unlike the
telephone network, the crucial information and computing applications
would be located on machines of users rather than in the machines
and assets of a centralized carrier. Moreover, the Internet’s core
protocols and basic standards were all open and non-proprietary. No
single firm could own the Internet or manage its destiny.
The Internet thus provided a platform where any developer could
new products or services — including the world wide web itself
or, more recently, Napster — without asking permission of a
As the Internet moved from a government-sponsored creation to a
vehicle, however, the Internet has developed in ways that threaten
its commitment to a pure end-to-end architecture. Whether and how
government will regulate the Internet’s architecture presents a
intellectual property law should preserve and foster a healthy
domain." This concern with the public domain limits the control
that artists and inventors can exercise over their creative works.
Traditionally, the "fair use" principle has balanced authors’
rights and the public domain by allowing the public to reproduce
material but only for certain purposes.
The Internet age has forced lawyers, regulators, and publishers to
confront new issues about the meaning and application of fair use.
On the one hand, the Internet lowers the cost of distributing
and hence presents an opportunity for dramatic expansion of the public
domain. On the other hand, the Internet age has also inspired
and legal restrictions that would constitute unprecedented
on opportunities for fair use.
can find a treasure trove of information for school reports and a
wide array of child-friendly entertainment sites. They can also call
up violent and pornographic images of almost every imaginable kind.
These possibilities pose a problem for parents, schools, libraries,
and government regulators: to what extent is it desirable — or
even possible — to protect children from the harms of the Internet
while preserving their access to its benefits?
And to what extent is it possible to restrict the freedom of children
on the Internet without restricting the freedom of adults?
early days of the Internet, some users fancied it a uniquely private
medium of communication. A celebrated New Yorker cartoon, for example,
depicted a canine who confided to a friend that he loved the net
he could pretend to be a person: "on the Internet, nobody knows
you’re a dog!"
Internet users soon came to realize, however, that much of their
information was easily observable. Web sites collected data and used
"cookies" to track people’s browsing habits; Internet service
providers had the capacity to record the communications that flowed
through their networks; and some employers monitored their employees’
On the other hand, while ordinary communications and web traffic are
easily observed, encryption technologies have made it possible for
people to send coded messages not readable by any unintended
— including law enforcement officers acting with a valid warrant.
Corrections or additions?
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