National Capital Chapter

Relevant and Impactful Messaging During COVID-19

By: Susan Apgood, President & CEO of News Generation

As we all adjust to the turbulent and changing new normal, we have continuously seen how radio and television can provide critical information to people in the U.S.

By utilizing the airwaves, our clients have succeeded in disseminating their important messages surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Through this, they have helped provide critical information to either targeted audiences or via widespread national outreach. These are some lessons we have learned in the last few weeks.

Timeliness is key always, but non-negotiable now. With the outbreak of COVID-19, telemedicine is serving as an effective infection control policy, keeping both healthcare providers and patients safer from contracting coronavirus. SOC Telemed conducted interviews with radio and television stations, emphasizing the importance of telemedicine during a time when it is needed most.

Human interest is a must. The American Nurses Association has urged Congress and the White House to take critical steps in the fight against COVID-19. ANA spoke to reporters about how nurses are managing response efforts, what nurses on the front line need most, and what Congress and the rest of America can do to help these nurses.

The consequences of not acting must be addressed. Bread for the World explains that the COVID-19 health crisis is very much also a hunger crisis. The fallout from COVID-19 is already causing hunger and food insecurity to surge both in the United States and around the world.

Make your messaging impactful, but keep in mind that people worldwide are suffering from the effects of this pandemic. Never be opportunistic and use your expertise in ways that will truly help listeners, viewers and readers. We can use these basic pillars of newsworthiness to grab attention while most importantly informing the audience of vital resources and information.

As we prepare for the most challenging weeks and months ahead due to the ongoing threat of COVID-19, we hope that you and the ones that you love stay safe and healthy. For more information on the content we are continually pitching the media, visit


About the Author

Susan Matthews Apgood has been in public relations since opening the doors of News Generation in 1997. She is active in a number of public relations associations, including the Public Relations Society of America- National Capital Chapter (PRSA-NCC) and Washington Women in Public Relations (WWPR) of which she is currently Treasurer. In 2014, she was one of three finalists for Washington Women in PR’s Woman of the Year award.

Apgood is an adjunct professor in the Kogod School of Business at American University. She is proud to lead the Development Committee and serve on the Board of JUST TRYAN IT, a non-profit working to positively impact the lives of families whose children have been diagnosed with cancer. She earned her MBA in finance from American University and BA in economics from George Washington University. For fun, she competes in triathlons, bike rides and half marathons. She lives in Bethesda, Maryland with her husband and three sons.

Contact info:, 301-664-6448, Twitter: @newsgeneration