PR > Techniques

HIDDEN FLAG

LOLA MULLENLOWE, Madrid / FELGTB/ELDIARIO.ES / 2019

Awards:

Silver Cannes Lions
CampaignCampaignLayout(opens in a new tab)
Case Film
Presentation Image
1 of 0 items

Overview

Credits

Overview

Why is this work relevant for PR?

Hidden Flag became #13 among the 45 Most Important Things From Around The World in 2018 via BuzzfeedNews and the images of the activists was shared millions of times. Politicians and influencers like Chelsea Clinton, Richard Madaleno, Iñigo Errejón and Jason Ball commented on the initiative and most importantly, people mobilized themselves and reproduced the idea. The #hiddenflag initiative went viral in more than 63 countries and got over 1.800 mentions in media garnered more the 15 million dollars in earned media over a 0$ media budget.

Background

In 2013, the Russian government enacted a federal law criminalizing the promotion and distribution of materials in support of non-traditional sexual relationships to minors. Many critics have characterized the law as a ban on the rights and culture of the LGBTQI+ community. El Diario, a spanish independent news platform and the FELGTB organization (Federación Estatal de Lesbianas, Gais, Transexuales y Bisexuales de España), aware of this situation, wanted to protest against the homophobia in Russia.

Describe the creative idea

Show pride for those who can’t.

El Diario and FELGBT present: Hidden Flag, a rebellious, law defying act that challenged an entire nation and inspired the world with a forbidden symbol hidden in plain sight. Six activists wearing soccer jerseys from different countries infiltrated the World Cup to form the rainbow flag just under the russian authorities noses.

Describe the PR strategy

We knew that making the LGBTQ+ community more visible is a fundamental part to their fight for civil rights in Russia. All eyes were on the World Cup and the whole LGBTQ+ community on alert, so the strategy was to take advantage of the popularity of the event to bring the LGBTQ+ community into the spotlight. We had to beat them at their own game and design a protest that was as sneaky as their laws. A protest that anyone would feel safe joining, and most of all a protest nobody could silence.

Describe the PR execution

A website told the stories of each of the activists and we used owned social media to set the protest in motion. An extensive media outreach alerted news outlet about the story and a newsroom was created to give interviews and content in real time. In addition we participated in the Madrid LGBTQ pride week (Europe’s largest) with a special exhibition of the Hidden Flag images and an ad-hoc video shown on the main stage at the inaugural event.

List the results

The #hiddenflag initiative went viral in more than 63 countries, added more than 1.800 mentions in media and on social networks, and more than 15 million dollars in earned media. Politicians and influencers from around the world commented the initiative and it was copied by groups of friends everywhere. #hiddenflag became the great topic of the World Cup in Russia. A simple idea that had an iconic impact in favor of the civil rights of the LGBTQ.

More Entries from Use of Events & Stunts in PR

24 items

Grand Prix Cannes Lions
THE TAMPON BOOK: A BOOK AGAINST TAX DISCRIMINATION

Other FMCG

THE TAMPON BOOK: A BOOK AGAINST TAX DISCRIMINATION

THE FEMALE COMPANY, SCHOLZ & FRIENDS

(opens in a new tab)

More Entries from LOLA MULLENLOWE

24 items

Grand Prix Cannes Lions
STAIRS

Consumer Goods

STAIRS

MAGNUM, LOLA MULLENLOWE

(opens in a new tab)