Women and Wills Seminar: Diane Terman PR NYC

Helping Women Over 50 Face Their Financial Fears

Article originally published in the New York Times, September 1, 2017, by Abby Ellin. 

Ronni Ginott was at a New Year’s Day party in 2003 when her husband, David, had a heart attack and died on the spot, at 58.

In an instant, Ms. Ginott, then 55, became not only a single mother of two daughters, but also the owner of E.M. Winston Company, her husband’s musical-instrument rental company. She knew nothing about the business, and her husband had no succession plan.

Had she discussed his will with him when he was drafting it a decade earlier, she might have discovered this. But they were both in their 40s, too young to worry about death, or so she thought. And so Ms. Ginott never got around to learning about her husband’s will, assets or their estate.

“I should have known what the will said, but I didn’t think it applied to me,” said Ms. Ginott, now 70, of Greenwich, Conn. “It was my fault. I was ignorant.”

Not long ago, Ms. Ginott shared her story with her friend Diane Terman Felenstein. Ms. Terman Felenstein co-founded the 008-Investment Club, an investing group for women, in 1996. It spawned similar organizations around the country and a book, “The Money Club.” The group disbanded after a few years. But as time passed, Ms. Terman Felenstein, who runs Diane Terman Public Relations in New York, heard horror stories of women just like Ms. Ginott — smart, accomplished women — who still cast a blind eye to financial matters, especially those relating to later life.

“Twenty years ago, our children were just getting married, we did not have grandchildren or they were just being born, we did not have mates who were ill,” Ms. Terman Felenstein said. “You didn’t think you’d die. But I’ve lost friends, they’ve lost husbands, there have been unexpected illnesses and medical bills. We’ve had divorces and remarriages and stepchildren. We saw people lose their money in 2008. These are issues that were never in anybody’s brain.”

After hearing Ms. Ginott’s story, Ms. Terman Felenstein and Gloria Gottlieb, the president of Worldwide Insurance, started “Women and Wills,” a free lecture series dedicated to educating women over 50 — though women of any age are welcome — on issues such as estate planning, succession planning, insurance, long-term health care, charitable giving and of course, wills. (The women had been partners before, having started a group in 2004 to help grandparents in need.)

“Tomorrow is today,” Ms. Gottlieb said. Even if you do have a will in place, she added, “Things always have to be reviewed. Some old policies are no longer adequate.”

So far, they have held three seminars in New York City, with over 200 women in total attendance, many of whom are in their 60s and 70s and were original members of the 008-Investment Club. Each seminar tackles a different issue, led by experts, including wealth advisers and divorce lawyers.

Laurie Ruckel, deputy chairwoman of the Trust and Estates Department at Loeb & Loeb, a law firm, discussed estate planning. Louise Phillips Forbes, a senior associate real estate broker at Halstead Property, stressed the importance of understanding the value of your real estate.

“Real estate holdings can be an important part of your estate planning and are often one of the largest assets within the estate,” Ms. Forbes said. “Careful consideration should be given to how you title real property owned with your spouse or partner as the title can control the disposition of the property.”

Women tend to live longer than men and must plan accordingly. In the United States, the average life expectancy is 81.2 years for women and 76.5 for men. This means women will most likely have to deal with money matters at some point, whether they like it or not.

“Women often survive their spouses, and they have not been well versed in the financial fluency of their family,” Ms. Ruckel said. “Or they have a sick spouse or a spouse who suffers from mental infirmities, and they don’t know what to do. Often, I see cases of a second marriage and there’s a natural tension between the women and the stepchildren. Even if everything went along swimmingly during the marriage, there can be all this tension when the glue is gone.”

That is what happened to Diane Steiner, a divorce lawyer in New York. After her second husband, to whom she was married for 25 years, was diagnosed with dementia, his children questioned the will and sued to be his guardian and for power of attorney. She thought she had a good relationship with them. But, she said, “I could not prevent my stepchildren from suing. They thought if they got control they could siphon off funds for their own benefit.”

Her husband died two weeks before the case was scheduled to go to trial, and the will and power of attorney over his finances remained as her husband wished. Still, “It cost me an enormous amount of money in legal fees,” she said.

“Women should insist on knowing what assets and liabilities they have,” said Ms. Steiner, who declined to give her age. “Probably half of the women I see say, ‘I was such a fool.’ You have to have money in your own name, as well as joint bank accounts. You have to have retirement assets. You have to pay attention to the financial statements that come into the house. Make copies of statements that look important. Never sign a tax return unless you understand it. Ask questions. Take it to a lawyer.”

Of course, understanding a legal document is one thing; executing it is another matter altogether.

Such was the case with Eileen Stein, whose husband of 45 years, Michael, died three years ago. Despite knowing everything in his will, she felt jolted when she realized she was actually in charge. She froze.

“So many women depend on their husband to do everything and they do not pay attention,” said Ms. Stein, who is in her early 70s. “When the day comes, they panic. It’s very important to have a good legal team to help and guide you.”

Ms. Ginott echoed that. After her husband died, she felt she was “a minute way from imploding.”

“I was terrified and grieving at the same time,” she said. But she hired lawyers, and they helped her wade through the morass. She is still running the instrument rental company today. But she learned a lesson: “Wills should be updated and reviewed together,” she said.

Ms. Terman Felenstein and Ms. Gottlieb plan to take that message around the country, setting up similar lectures. They are also planning another book. “If you don’t do proper planning you’re going to be left holding a paper bag,” Ms. Terman Felenstein said. “We say, ‘If you’re left holding the bag, there ought to be money in it.’”

Using Public Relations To Launch A National Brand

Health & Wellness Public Relations: Zestra: Diane Terman PR NYCDiane Terman PR, a PR agency located in New York City that has successfully represented several well-known brands, was tasked with taking Zestra Essential Arousal Oils, a newly introduced health and wellness product offering pleasure to women grappling with the lack of sexual satisfaction, into the spotlight while facing the taboo of women’s sexual issues allowed in the news.  While male versions of these products such as Cialis and Viagra commercials saturated the airwaves on major networks, Zestra’s requests for airtime were consistently denied because the product targeted women’s sexual needs.

We had to find a way to make the Zestra message heard when the double standard in acceptance seemed insurmountable.

We made the problem part of the solution, exposing the inequality between the genders in national media.  By making news from news, we knew that spreading this message was instrumental to Zestra becoming leading the brand in the arena of women’s sexual health.

By strategically placing an article detailing Zestra’s plight in the business section of The New York Times, they secured additional nationwide media coverage in print outlets such as The Miami Herald, The Star Ledger, The Record, The San Francisco Chronicle and Women’s Health Magazine. TV news personalities from Barbara Walters, Whoopi Goldberg, Fran Drescher and Kathy Lee & Hoda openly discussed women’s sexual concerns and the Zestra solution.

The bottom line: The number of retailers distributing Zestra doubled as did the sales on their website while setting record number sales at Wal-Mart.

Followed by the lead story on ABC’s Nightline and segments on CBS This Morning, The Today Show, Entertainment Tonight, and The View, doctors and leading sexual health professionals began speaking directly to women about their options for sexual dissatisfaction on national talk radio, TV talk shows, including the Lifetime TV network and through social media.

Celebrities such as reality star and famed “momager” Kris Jenner, soap opera star Jackie Zeman, a.k.a “Nurse Bobbi” on General Hospital and sitcom star Fran Drescher were among the leading celebrities we recruited to help promote Zestra. We also organized Men’s Panels filled with high-powered relationship experts and sexual health professionals to offer their perspectives on women and sex.

This catapulted Zestra into a nationally known brand, thus helping women break their silence about their sexual concerns.

Diane Terman Public Relations is a PR firm in New York City with a reputation for smart and savvy business-building strategies to help their clients prosper. One-of-a-kind “insider” connections give clients instant access to an impressive network of influential power brokers, media contacts, and press. Visit us at dianetermanpr.com or call 212-744-6055. 

Media Training: Ask The PR Pro - Diane Terman Public Relations NYC

What Is Media Training And Why Is It Important? 

Media training teaches you how to get your message across in a clear and concise manner.

Being knowledgeable about a topic is not enough so learning how to listen to interviewer questions and answering without a lot of superfluous information is key to being an effective spokesperson. This is your opportunity to identify you and/or brand and establish yourself as an expert. Therefore, knowing how to be prepared for an interview to express your key message points whether it’s on-air, on the phone or by email, is one of the best things you can do you for you and your business. The media will appreciate your focus and will become comfortable relying on you as a valuable and credible resource.

A good PR agency will be able to recommend a media trainer but it is important that you do your homework as well. Interview them to find out if they’re a good match for your requirements and whether they’re qualified to address your specific needs. You will be spending a lot of time with your media trainer; you want to make sure it’s someone you feel comfortable with. “We have several different media trainers that we work with and always look for the best fit for each individual client”, explains Diane Terman PR President, Deborah Kerner. “A good media trainer/client relationship is one key to achieving success.”

Media training extends far beyond just knowing how to answer the reporter’s questions; it includes posture, wardrobe, hair and makeup. “For an on-air interview, body language can be equally as important as the what the person is saying”, Kerner continues. “If a person is giving off a negative vibe with their body language, no one will want to listen or believe what they have to say.”

Embrace media training. The value it can add to you and your business cannot be understated.



The Woman's Lifestyle Market: Diane Terman PR NYC

Understanding The Women’s Market

For savvy marketers, it didn’t take 2016’s female-dominated presidential race to realize the influence of women in this country. Women are more than just a political and social force, they have become THE major economic phenomenon in the U.S. Women now impact 85% of all consumer purchases and this trend is expected to continue with women controlling two thirds of consumer wealth in the U.S. by 2025.

A Dynamic Market Force

The women’s market is stronger than ever and constantly evolving. With successful careers and strong financial portfolios, female baby boomers blazed the trail for the generations who followed. Today’s millennial women are earning college degrees at rates higher than men and are set to transform the workplace and the marketplace. The average American woman is expected to earn more than the average American man by 2028. So, it is critical to craft a brand message that will resonate with this growing population of financially-empowered women.
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Forbes Magazine 2015)

Where WE Come In…

Diane Terman Public Relations understands the market, follows the trends and connects our clients to an impressive network of media contacts. Let us achieve for you what we have proudly achieved for so many other women’s lifestyle brands:

Dr.’s Remedy
DJS Events

Capturing the women’s lifestyle market is instrumental to your success. Let Diane Terman Public Relations deliver you to this market.

Public Speaking: Diane Terman PR NYC

How To Improve Your Public Speaking

One of the most common fears in the world is public speaking. Whether you are standing in front of a crowd of fifteen people or four hundred, there is something about speaking in front of others that gives people tremendous anxiety. There are many tips to help overcome this fear, such as pretending the audience is in their underwear. It works for some, but for others it achieves nothing besides now speaking to a large group of half-naked people. Instead, you should focus on these things when public speaking.

Don’t read your speech word-for-word. This causes you to focus on what you are reading instead of engaging with your audience. A crowd wants to be spoken to, not at. Reading word-for-word can also cause you to read very slowly, making your speech extremely boring. Make eye contact with your audience and have a conversation with them. If someone interjects, address it. Don’t be afraid to go off topic. Speak from the heart and people will find you genuine.

Talk like yourself. When making a speech, many people think it’s better to sound like a different version of themselves. This could depend on the material your are speaking about or the audience you’re addressing. This is unnecessary! You can get the same message across by speaking like yourself. When you try too hard, you look like you’re trying too hard and that’s a turn off. Be yourself!

Find your perfect pitch. One of the hardest parts of public speaking is finding the right volume for your voice. You need to be loud enough so that everyone can hear you, but you don’t want to be shouting at them. Being too quiet or too loud can ruin a speech, so make sure you find your happy medium.

Don’t argue with your audience. You may find yourself in a losing battle with the public opinion, and that’s okay. There may be people trying to interrupt your speech in order to get their point across. Don’t get agitated. Simply smile and let them speak. There is no need for you to interrupt them, because your opinion will get lost in the noise. Wait for them to finish, and then respond accordingly.

Have fun! Public speaking can be terrifying, so why not take the fear out of it? You could start with a joke, incorporate life experiences, or even involve the audience in a game. This will not only make the process more fun for you, but for everyone else as well. Having fun will ensure that the audience is paying attention and that you are making an impression.

Public speaking is here to stay. Even with the strides in technology, everyone will have to speak in front of others at some point in their lifetime. It can be scary, but you should use that fear to deliver a fantastic speech. No one becomes a great public speaker overnight, so remember to practice. The fear will lessen every time you try. Good luck!

What to expect from a PR campaign

What To Expect (and Not Expect) From A PR Campaign

“Our business is ready to invest in a public relations campaign. What should I expect?” #AskThePRPro 

PR is an investment, not a guarantee.

It’s more subtle than advertising or marketing and has a goal of getting the attention of the media with an understanding that a mention in the media about your company has more credibility than advertising.

Do not expect articles that simply praise your business.

Story angles and messages need to be tailored to the needs of various media outlets and will center on differentiating you from your competitors. These can be tied to trends, local events, news, or other interesting topics.

Public relations builds public awareness and credibility, and getting feature stories in national media can take time. To gain national credibility a foundation must first be established locally and regionally, and to an extent, in trade publications as well. Realistically, you can expect local coverage within the first few months, coverage in the trade publications within four to six months, and coverage in national publications within 16 to 32 months.

Visual content is in high demand online and having great content on your website and across various social media outlets is essential for drawing hungry eyes and generating interest. The importance of high quality photos cannot be underestimated and good quality video is even better.

Media visits are generally hosted by the client because national publications often employ freelance writers who do not get paid for their time or their meal from the outlets they’re working with. It’s not realistic to expect every visit to result in an immediate story but it’s important to remember that even if a journalist does not write about you immediately, they will keep you in mind for future stories. Some may even come out a year or more after someone has visited so patience is crucial.

Remember that PR is an investment and doesn’t happen overnight.

Digital and Traditional PR

It’s A Digital World But Traditional PR Ain’t Dead Just Yet!

Photo Credit: Cision

If I can promote my brand through digital media, why is traditional PR still important? #AskThePRPro

Digital media has become an essential part of public relations over the last few years. However, it would be nothing without its roots in traditional PR.

Many organizations, businesses and individuals seeking public relations believe that because they can promote their brand through digital media, traditional PR is no longer important but that could not be further from the truth.

“Traditional media is the first thing clients ask for when they tell us what’s important to them,” explains Diane Terman PR President, Deborah Kerner, “and it’s still the most recognizable form of public relations.” Long-established publications like the The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today and Vogue as well as television programs like The Today Show and Good Morning America are still among the most popular forms of exposure that clients seek for PR placements and that can’t happen through digital media alone.

Though traditional print media is not as ubiquitous and immediate as digital, there are still many positives to the traditional PR route.

  1. Traditional media is instantly recognizable and trusted.
    The moment you’ve been in The New York Times or on CNN your product or brand gains instant validity, trustworthiness and respect.
  2. Social media feeds off of traditional media.
    “There are certain types of traditional media that are often more recognizable than digital media,” Kerner says. “Both forms of press use social media to promote their content but if something is in print or on TV, there’s an opportunity for even greater media coverage and viewership because this content will be added to their websites.”
  3. Traditional PR offers various tactics.
    Aside from press releases (both traditional and digital), there are a wide variety of tactics that a good publicist will use to elevate a brand including event planning, reputation management, trade shows to name a few. Each of these tactics require having a strong list of contacts who can make things happen. These relationships cannot be built strictly through digital media.

Diane Terman PR excels at seamlessly integrating the best of digital media and traditional public relations for maximum exposure and buzz for your business.

Our experienced team of professionals is knowledgeable, passionate and connected. While we have a long history of successfully working with businesses of all types, our focus on lifestyle and women’s interests makes us unique and keeps us connected to resources vital to your success.

How A Woman's Self-Esteem Is Impacted By PR and Marketing

How a Woman’s Self-Image Is Impacted by Marketing and PR

A recent article in GCI Magazine referenced a campaign and study by Dove in which 80% of women said they feel anxious about the way they look and only 4% would describe themselves as beautiful. As a PR agency that works with many beauty and cosmetics brands, we found this to be notable.  Any publicity campaign focused on cosmetics or on the topic of a woman’s beauty is a sensitive subject in a world where models can be rendered virtually unrecognizable through Photoshop and those retouched images used as an ideal that women should seek to attain.

As a woman-owned agency, Diane Terman PR NYC is particularly sensitive to the issues women face and how a campaign designed to promote an unrealistic vision of what constitutes “beauty” may get someone to buy a product but ultimately is bad for society. We agree with Dove when they say, “”In an effort to create a world where beauty is a source of confidence, not anxiety, we strive to inform, inspire and ignite conversation and change.”

Our campaigns, whether in print, on television, or through digital/social media, focus on the inherent beauty of all women and how using our clients’ products will enhance the beauty they already possess.  We believe any PR campaign that doesn’t deliver a positive message will backfire even if it provides a short-term boost. In this case, there IS such a thing as bad publicity.

Social Media Users 2017

Social Media Active Users By Network [Infograph]

Source: thesocialmediahat.com

One of the most common questions from both businesses and social media marketers is “how many?” How many users. How many people. How many opportunities – for each of the social networks.

Of course each social network is different. Some have extremely high usage every month by hundreds of millions of users, while others the only numbers reported are registered members.

Are any of these numbers accurate? Nope. They’re changing by the second, literally, and of course there are always questions about how they’re calculated, how many fake accounts are counted, and so on.

Yet the fact remains, even with a large statistical margin for error, these membership numbers are extremely interesting.

For each network, we will indicate the date of the most recent accounting, as well as whether we are looking at active monthly members or just registered users. Below the top social networks, you’ll also find data for secondary or up and coming networks, like Tumblr, Periscope and more.

Social Media Active Users

The CollegeBound Initiative Celebration

Diane Terman and Sarina Appel were honored to attend the recent, and unforgettable, CollegeBound Initiative Celebration. Honorees were Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation, and Melissa Brenner, Senior Vice President of Digital Media at the NBA, with special recognition to Paula Dofat, Director of College Counseling at their affiliate school Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women!

Since CBI’s inception, they have enrolled more than 13,000 students in college, including 2,500 from the Class of 2017, and have generated more than $450 million in financial aid. The majority of their students will be the first in their family to go to college. And even more, an independent evaluation found that CBI students graduate and earn 4-year college degrees at nearly 4x the rate of their peers.

Congratulations to all for a job well done and for a wonderful evening.