Kollyn Conrad, Publicly Private

Case Study

Project Overview

Publicly Private is a nonprofit organization aiming to change the lives of people who identify as LGBTQIA+ by offering supplies, support, and community empowerment. Kollyn Conrad, the organization’s Founder and Executive Director, was inspired to create the organization as a result of his own personal experience growing up as a gay man in the American South — a place where “heteronormativity is all but forced upon you.” 

Conrad’s upbringing resulted in him experiencing years of discrimination, both firsthand and toward other LGBTQIA+ people in his community. As a result, he became extremely passionate about helping and befriending underserved individuals, combining his passion and experience to create Publicly Private and aid LGBTQIA+ individuals in their lifelong journeys. 

Publicly Private was created to fill the gap of support for LGBTQIA+ individuals in the South. Through its virtual support, Conrad’s organization is able to directly change the lives of southern LGBTQIA+ individuals who may otherwise be left feeling alone in their struggles.

The Problem

Publicly Private officially launched on June 1, 2022, with the mission to offer supplies, support, and empowerment to LGBTQIA+ in need across the US — particularly those in the South. Less than two months later, realizing the need to raise awareness for his new organization and ensure a successful first year, Conrad sought out Otter PR to help generate press coverage and highlight the efforts of his organization.

During initial talks with Conrad, our team recognized that our efforts could not only assist him in raising awareness of Publicly Private, but also secure more external funding to aid its mission. In late July of 2022, once the organization’s website officially launched, our team began outlining a comprehensive PR strategy for Conrad.

The Strategy

Our team set to work crafting pitches that aligned with trending news and events impacting the LGBTQIA+ community. Leveraging those cycles allowed us to obtain media coverage for both Conrad as a thought expert and Publicly Private as a pillar of support for LGBTQIA+ people in the US. These included expert quotes from Conrad featured in CNN for National Coming Out Day, and Refinery29 regarding how the SCOTUS overturning Roe v. Wade impacts the health and well-being of the LGBTQIA+ community. 

Additionally, Conrad was quoted in Healthline, discussing how to live with and support an HIV-positive family member — an issue the LGBTQIA+ community still faces after decades of unsubstantiated stigma and bias. Our pitches to journalists and reporters regarding these topics subsequently unlocked further opportunities for Conrad to comment on specific topics and issues related to the physical, mental, and emotional health of the LGBTQIA+ community.

Business Impact (results)

Since partnering with Otter PR for media coverage, Conrad has been featured in over two dozen top-tier media outlets, including LA Weekly, LGBTQ Nation, Metro Weekly, MSN, Women.com, and more. His press has been able to reach an audience of over 1.7 billion readers, with over 100 pickups in separate publications.

Similarly, Publicly Private has experienced an exponential increase in awareness of its presence, particularly in the Knoxville, TN area — Conrad’s hometown. This has allowed the organization to establish the first-ever virtual LGBTQIA+ center in Tennessee, which has seen equally impressive growth in users signing up to join Publicly Private’s “private side.”

We also published a press release about Publicly Private’s appearance and fundraising efforts at Knoxville Pride in the Summer of 2023. After the event, Conrad mentioned to our team that he was able to successfully distribute over 1,000 business cards containing information about his organization.

Tags: Human Rights, LGBTQ+, Nonprofit, Political
Picture of Courtney Walker

Courtney Walker

Are you a good fit?

The amount of publicity they have generated for has been nothing short of impressive. It has dramatically increased new clients by 30% and I have seen my platforms grow 2-fold

Mike Mandell


Interested in working with Otter PR?

Fill in the form below to book a 15 min no-obligation consulting session.