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How Publicists Work


Publicists are public relations professionals who represent celebrities rather than companies. Gnarls Barkley singer Cee Lo Green parties with his publicist Echo Hattix. See more musician pictures.
© Tiffany Rose/WireImage/Getty Images

It's hard to be famous. In the era of the 24-hour news cycle, there's no end to the public's hunger for the latest, craziest news, especially if it involves a celebrity. Young Hollywood actors are trailed by packs of roving paparazzi, and the pages of tabloid magazines are devoted to celebrities dressing badly, saying stupid things and being caught with people other than their spouse.

Musician Image Gallery

This is why actors, politicians, musicians, authors and other well-known public figures hire publicists. Publicists are public relations professionals who specialize in representing individuals rather than companies and large organizations. The job of the publicist is to manage the client's image in the eyes of the public. They do this by getting good press for their client in magazines, newspapers, TV shows and Web sites.

A good publicist knows all of the editors, journalists and TV reporters that work her client's beat. She knows how to pitch a story that writes its own headline. And she knows how to spin a possible publicity crisis into a golden opportunity. After all, "all publicity is good publicity."

What do publicists do? How do you succeed as a publicist? And, how do you break into the business? Read on to find out.