Case Studies

A Leading Global Security Solutions Provider

THE BRIEF

  • Develop relationships with state and federal governments.
  • Identify emerging business opportunities.
  • Create a positive policy environment for services.
  • Promote and position client as leading service provider in the area.
  • Provide ongoing issue and crisis communications support as required, including acting as media spokesperson.

STRATEGY

  • Position client as the partner of choice for Australian federal and state governments in the security sector to assist governments in achieving their service delivery and budgetary objectives.

TACTICS

  • Media interviews and feature stories.
  • 'Premium' Newsletter (sent to Ministers, politicians and senior bureaucrats).
  • Identifying and negotiating sponsorship opportunities.
  • Creation of a Government Advisory Panel to build relationships with governments (led by a former Minister for Defence).
  • 'Roadshow' events to promote specific capabilities.
  • Develop a crisis management system and process.
  • Develop messages and protocols for specific issues and crises that may erupt
  • Spokesperson training and prepping prior to media interviews and appearances before parliamentary inquiries.
  • Manage media inquiries during crises, including acting as official company spokesperson.
  • Liaise with government ministers and departments on responses to issues and crises.

OUTCOMES

  • Creating positive environment for company with federal and state governments
  • Media coverage on specific issues contained and positive reporting of company achieved
  • Won contract for management of offshore processing centre
  • Successfully managed several critical issues and crises.
Contamination Scare - Infant Formula

CHALLENGE
To represent an infant formula company during a contamination scare across a number of international markets

STRATEGY

  • Continue the effective public affairs function to work with local and international media outlets
  • Monitor and respond to media articles
  • Provide media training to key executives
  • Coordinate and run media conferences
  • Provide social media analytics to gauge and respond to consumer sentiment

OUTCOME

  • Successful reputation and brand management across multiple markets
  • Media, government and industry stakeholders congratulated the company on its crisis management of the issue.
University

CHALLENGE
Provide ongoing crisis communications support to one of Australia's leading Universities

STRATEGY

  • Develop a Crisis Communication Manual, consistent with the university's existing Operational Response Procedures
  • Provide ongoing guidance and support
  • Assist the client in developing the capacity to respond to adverse media attention relating to anti-social behaviour by students, government inquiries, and reputation management
  • Liaise with state and federal government ministers regarding the alleged misappropriation of funds by a post-graduate students association

OUTCOME

  • Gained positive stakeholder perceptions and media coverage
Australia’s Future Submarine Project

In late 2014 the Australian Federal Government began signalling that it intended to purchase the nation’s next generation of submarines (“the Future Submarine”) from Japan. The decision was widely accepted as a fait accompli. Our Australian team was asked by a confidential party to design and execute a campaign that would open the Future Submarine to a range of players through a competitive process.

When we began our engagement, media coverage indicated that there was a ‘done deal’ between the Australian Government and Japan over the sale of ‘off-the-shelf’ submarines. The issue received limited media attention, which suggested the purchase was prudent, given Japanese submarines were cheaper and could be delivered sooner than any other option. This would be devastating to the naval ship building operations in South Australia, which had built the last fleet of Australia’s submarines.

The challenge was to change the conversation and advocate for a competitive tender process. Our team raised questions about the cost and quality of what became known as “Option J” while establishing there were other options that should be considered in the national interest.

Our strategy was to emphasise the importance of the competitive process, particularly with defence acquisition. Therefore, the basis of the campaign was that purchasing an untested submarine from Japan without public scrutiny or an open tender was not transparent.

We worked closely with internationally renowned Naval expert to re-focus the debate on the tender process. This was done via a range of tactics, including direct email campaigns, meeting programs, stakeholder engagement and targeted media relations.

The outcome of the campaign was positive. Politicians, including Liberal and National Party MPs, Senators and key crossbenchers publically supported a competitive process.

Within five months of the commencement of the program, the Government announced it would support a competitive process and also committed $39B investment in South Australia’s naval ship building program to safeguard jobs. The then Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Defence Minister Kevin Andrews raised the possibility of submarine collaboration with Germany and France during their respective visits to Europe in April 2015.