Amidst Bad Economy, Young Grads Create Own Opportunities

Woodbridge, New Jersey (PRESS RELEASE – June 13, 2011) – Now that the Class of 2011 has said goodbye to their respective colleges and universities, the all-too familiar script of seeking employment amidst an unpredictable economy awaits them. However they are not alone; the last three U.S. graduating classes have encountered a similar scenario, including those in 2009.

“When I completed my undergraduate degree three years ago, I was ready to take on the world,” says Jeremiah Sullivan, co-owner and operator of Framework Media Strategies, a small public relations and marketing team based in Woodbridge, N.J. “However, coming out of college it quickly became apparent that the world was a very different, very competitive place since the economic collapse. It took some time to realize that you had to really think outside-of-the-box to be heard.”

Surveys conducted in 2009 by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, a professional organization of career counselors at more than 2,000 U.S. colleges and universities, showed that at that time the recession had been particularly tough on those entering the job market with a college degree. For that year’s graduating class, fewer than one-fifth of graduates had job offers in hand when they finished school.

Although recent college graduates continue to find employment opportunities to be few and far between, success stories can be found.

Sullivan’s company, Framework Media Strategies, is an example of how some of the nation’s young alumni are embracing entrepreneurship to create new opportunities where none previously existed.

“I know I can speak for our team when I say that job-hunting post college was a nightmare,” Sullivan says. “After a few months of sending resumes with little-to-no response, my now-business partner Peter Kelly and I felt it was time to get back to the drawing board. We spent time looking inward and taking stock of the skills and experiences we had, then compared our strengths to industry trends that were already out there.”

Founded in 2010, the small public relations and marketing team is co-owned and operated by Kelly and Sullivan. To date, Framework Media Strategies has added six clients with several more on the way.

“It took several months to really figure out what direction we wanted to go in,” Kelly says. “We both came from a public relations background but also brought our own additional skills to the table. While Jeremiah had tested media relations experience, my previous work allowed me to offer our clients creative, yet strategic digital and print designs. Our challenge was finding a way to integrate it all together.”

According to both Kelly and Sullivan, the missing piece of the puzzle was something that had slowly been taking the world by storm; new media.

“Social networks like Facebook and microblogging services like Twitter, have become commonplace in today’s daily dialogue,” Kelly says. “In late 2004, early 2005, Facebook was only a prevalent part of most college students’ lives; then something happened. Businesses began to take interest in new media tools, adding positions like social media ‘coordinators’ or ‘experts’ to their list of job openings. We saw that, understood this trend to be more than just a fad, and decided to incorporate social media into the services we offered. I am very glad we did.”

Currently, Framework Media Strategies specializes in helping their clients understand, and capitalize, on the benefits of utilizing both traditional outreach outreach techniques, including print and broadcast media, along with new media tools like social networks and microblogs to aid public relations, marketing and promotional initiatives.

“Social media has changed the way public relations professionals do business,” Sullivan says. “There is no question about it; these tools bring an unprecedented reach and offer users the ability to connect with their audiences like never before; the conversation never stops. We’re helping our clients see that and understand how certain tools can aide them in raising awareness.”

Overall, Framework Media Strategies offers services including creative design, public and media relations and social media assistance. The company’s services are open to a diverse audience, including small businesses, non-profit organizations and entertainment-based clients such as musicians and bands in New Jersey.

“Some people look at the type of clients we work with and think we’re all over the place,” Kelly says. “But we’re really not. After deciding to integrate new and traditional media tactics into the services we offered, the next step was identifying what types of clients would benefit most from our approach. Our research showed that although traditional exposure benefited virtually any type of client, once we added new media tools to the mix, our target client became one with an audience that was engaged, and wanted to be engaged, constantly. That changed the game a bit.”

In their year-and-a-half of operation, Framework Media Strategies has had several measures of early success.

In January, the team was featured by 101.9 WRXP FM’s ‘Supported By’ segment on the station’s morning program ‘The Rock Show’. In addition, they’ve built social media presences and acquired over 30 media hits for their clients, launched websites, booked radio interviews, created digital and print designs, developed logos and aided a local band in its journey from basement practices, to gracing the stage at the New Meadowlands Sports Complex during the 2011 Bamboozle Music Festival this past April.

“Early on, we made a promise to ourselves that we’d always be our first client and use our business as an example for those that we work with,” Kelly says. “Sure, we can go on and on about the benefits of combining traditional and new media, but the people we talk to want to see the results. We’re working tirelessly to not only advance our clients with the tactics we’ve first tested and perfected on ourselves, but identify what will be next, understand it and apply it in the future.”

Both Kelly and Sullivan are New Jersey natives and graduates of Seton Hall University. As undergraduates both were public relations majors. In addition, Kelly minored in graphic arts while Sullivan studied broadcast media. Prior to the advent of their company, the partners acquired experience working with organizations such as 89.5 FM WSOU, Golden Loader Associates, the Liberty Science Center, Major League Baseball, the New York Mets and Seton Hall University.

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