Issues & Crisis: Davies comes out to face the media

Frank was chosen by management firm Centric to positively handle the announcement of its client, international cricketer Steven Davies, as a gay sportsman.

Steven Davies: first openly gay cricketer
Steven Davies: first openly gay cricketer

Campaign Glad to be Out: Steven Davies Becomes the First Openly Gay International Cricketer
Client Centric
PR team Frank PR
Timescale March 2011
Budget £5,000

Objectives

  • To communicate a positive message regarding Davies' sexuality to protect his career
  • To deter non-relevant discussions about Davies' relationships or gay footballers.

Strategy and plan

Frank decided the right tactic was for Davies to speak directly to the media, rather than issuing a statement. It briefed the England and Wales Cricket Board, Surrey CCC, teammates and family members ahead of the announcement. Davies was media-trained for face-to-face interviews with The Daily Telegraph and The Sun.

All fees were donated to the NSPCC and ChildLine. Davies set up a Twitter account to actively respond to comment.

Measurement and evaluation

The campaign gained positive media coverage in national broadcast and print media, including on This Morning, Sky News, CNN, BBC News, TalkSport and Radio 5 Live.

Results

Within 12 hours of launching, Davies' Twitter account accumulated 4,500 followers. No media included information on Davies' relationships or gay footballers. The campaign has been shortlisted for a PRWeek Award.

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