The Design Business Show 229: Working Through Imposter Syndrome in the Media Spotlight with Susan Harrow

Director : Melissa Burkheimer | May 22, 2023
Check out episode 229 of The Design Business Show with Susan Harrow to learn about media training

Susan Harrow is a media trainer, marketing strategist, martial artist + author of Sell Yourself Without Selling Your Soul® (HarperCollins), the first and only book on promoting yourself without using jargon, sales, sex, war, or aggressive language. She specializes in working with women leaders, entrepreneurs + innovators solving the world’s most pressing problems. For the past 33 years she’s trained thousands of people for TV, radio, panel, podcast + print interviews to be highly desirable, repeat guests who shine in the media spotlight™.

She’s prepped her clients and course participants to appear on Oprah, 60 Minutes, Larry King Live, The Today Show, Good Morning America, Fresh Air, Marketplace, Bloomberg, MSNBC, NPR, CNN, FOX, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Wired, Forbes, Inc., O, Parade, Vanity Fair etc. as well as stage to screen.

You may know her as the “Go To Girl” for getting on Oprah. What you might not know about her is that she has a black belt in Aikido, she rafted down the Zambezi River in class 5 rapids + was almost gored to death by an elephant.

Join us as we learn how to let go of imposter syndrome or if we lack or have lost confidence so we can keep our originality and quirks and be true to ourselves in every moment.

Here’s what we covered on the episode:

Susan’s Start in PR + Imposter Syndrome 

  • How Susan used to be known as the go-to-girl for getting on Oprah when she was a publicist for authors, speakers, and entrepreneurs
  • Women with products have a great opportunity to get into O Magazine, which can have one of the most powerful effects on your business
  • As a publicist, Susan was curious why some people weren’t as effective as others in media, and she discovered it was often what they were saying or how they were being, so she started doing media training
  • Susan wanted to help promote women in a way where they didn’t feel like they had to brag, beg or whore themselves 
  • Self-doubt and imposter syndrome are natural when moving to the next level of our expertise, and we need to accept that it exists but not stay in it
  • When imposter syndrome comes up, Susan teaches us how to micromanage our minds so we can make sure our thoughts are serving the person we want to be and shares an example of when she was experiencing imposter syndrome the other day and what she did to help herself
  • Imposter syndrome comes from within, which is why we need to shift our mindset around it – you can make a million dollars, have a great life and family, and still experience it
  • Susan shares that she’s always thinking about the next thing and moves towards what makes her curious and what’s going to light her up
  • Susan had been working on a course for women on how to handle sexual harassment but also be able to speak their minds, stand their ground and express themselves in the world, which is the area she’s moving into
  • Role-playing is important to developing internal personal power so you can speak up and stay safe in any situation, especially in the media spotlight
  • Susan teaches facial language, body language, verbal language, and the embodiment of showing who you are in any circumstance so you’re not pushed around

Media Strategy

  • To move forward in media today, Susan says you need to have a story or a connection with something going on in the culture today that’s important to other people and then match that to the correct audience, publication, or show
  • Susan works hand-in-hand with publicity firms where they do the booking, and she does the media training
  • The first 3 questions Susan asks clients are what’s your deepest intention/how do you want to serve? What do you want for yourself professionally, personally, spiritually, financially, and physically? What do you want your audience to do? Then they build their messaging around those answers
  • When choosing the best media method for clients, Susan says they start small to develop their chops and test what resonates with their audience; they look at what comes naturally to them and choose the medium based on where their clients are  
  • Susan shares the strategy she used to help a client build her credibility through print media  
  • In a world of quick videos and pictures, Susan shares why it’s important to pick something long and lasting, like a podcast, but says if there is a quick pop of something in media for you, you need to monetize it quickly and work it into your PR plan
  • Susan is always looking at what’s unique or special about a person and how they can connect it to the world and culture today
  • Check out PR for freebies, Susan’s blog and free report to help you create the specific story you’ll need for any media, interview, presentation, etc.
  • Susan would like women to expand their vision and being into all the areas of capability and curiosity that they’ve been longing for


Links mentioned:

Sell Yourself Without Selling Your Soul®

PR Secrets Website 

Free Report: How to Create Your Story 

Connect with Susan on Facebook 

Connect with Susan on Instagram 

Connect with Susan on LinkedIn

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