Grey Horse

We are a communication firm

We are a communication firm

At Grey Horse, we know that the power to attract attention is the power to change everything. As a full-service communications firm, our corporate philosophy is to work with individuals and brands who are changing the world for the better with big ideas, bold plans, and a commitment to equality and the environment. Fueling bold ideas with sharp execution, we make impactful statements and unforgettable experiences that change the conversation.

Services

We oversee the breadth of clients’ communications needs, from defining brand principles to communicating through a crisis. Working with global media organizations, bestselling authors, socially conscious non-profits, and top executives, we have produced major launch events, award-winning content, and digital media campaigns with billions of impressions. Our achievements are our clients’ achievements, and often milestones for the world.

  • Public Relations
  • Digital Strategy
  • Live and Digital Events
  • Crisis Communications
  • Female Leadership
  • Audience Engagement
  • Personal Branding
  • Web Development
  • Social Media
  • Brand Design
  • Content Creation
  • Media Training

Process

As an agency partner, we listen first, then broaden clients’ capabilities through our range of expertise. Every one of our projects is dynamic, and evolving continuously to meet the needs of the moment. Our work often includes the following phases:

  • Full internal audit
  • Competitive analysis
  • Onboarding interviews
  • Strategic plan
  • Asset development
  • Campaign execution
  • Daily real-time communication
  • Scheduled calls + meetings
  • Regular analytics reports
  • Evaluation + adjustments

Works

TED Countdown

Bringing climate change to center stage

TED Countdown, the famous brand’s new climate initiative, needed to make a splash. They had to mobilize enthusiasm for their first big event (an invite-only summit in Edinburgh) since the start of the pandemic. They had to get eyeballs on the livestream to follow the summit. And they had to do this by convincing people who normally don’t care about climate change to… care about climate change.

Grey Horse tapped its extensive network of influencers to find a diverse group of people who could speak to audiences that typically don’t engage with climate issues. We created playbooks for them to create engaging content before, during, and after the summit (and tracked the analytics of what they made). We also took over daily copywriting duties for TED’s Twitter and Instagram accounts, giving them a fresh new voice. And, as the coup de grace, we designed a paid social promotion to boost their audiences across key platforms—and drive attention to the all-important livestream.

Grey Horse influencers helped spike digital engagement around the summit’s themes, leading to thousands of likes, comments, and shares. TED’s organic growth rates also showed significant improvement under Grey Horse’s watch, with 3x Twitter impressions and 8x follower growth at the height of the campaign. Then came the final paid social sprint. Thanks to Grey Horse’s strategy and implementation, TED added over 5,600 new newsletter subscribers, nearly 4,000 new Instagram followers, and drove tens of thousands of viewers to its livestream.

#FreeBritney

Translating the Princess of Pop’s struggle into a nationwide disability rights movement

With Britney Spears’ final conservatorship court date on the horizon, #FreeBritney activists were at a crossroads – what would their movement look like, and would it even continue to exist, once Britney was free?

Grey Horse consulted with Free Britney and other figures in the anti-conservatorship movement to design the Free Britney Symposium, a private event targeted to lawmakers, the legal community, and select media attendees. The event aimed to make a statement that the #FreeBritney activists would continue working against conservatorships for all victims, not just Britney. We produced the event, managed security, coordinated well-known speakers, and ran the run of show and technology. We also handled media pitching and press on behalf of the organizers.

The event was a success, both from event management and press coverage perspectives. It inspired ongoing coverage in outlets including Sky News, and made a big enough splash to get Britney herself involved. This engagement led to ongoing consulting with the movement for creative services, production, and much more.

Melissa Mills

Helping Jane Roe’s daughter advocate for reproductive rights

Melissa Mills, the first daughter of the woman known as Jane Roe, wanted to tell her story publicly for the first time. Following the publication of Joshua Prager’s The Family Roe, Melissa sought the opportunity to reaffirm her mother’s legacy in the context of a modern conservative movement that seeks to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Grey Horse worked with Melissa to develop the story of her relationship with her mother into a narrative that would allow her to advocate for her pro-choice politics. Media training and careful management of press opportunities put Melissa in the best possible position to speak about a sensitive and personal topic.

In connection with a series of Supreme Court oral arguments in fall 2021, Melissa was featured on CBS Mornings and MSNBC Katie Tur Reports, and in TIME Magazine.

Rage Becomes Her

Helping women put their anger to good use

In her first book, award-winning writer and activist Soraya Chemaly encouraged women across the world to harness their anger into positive personal and societal change. Grey Horse supported her messaging by coordinating a successful book launch party at Corkbuzz and creating a detailed social media strategy, as well as a full suite of Rage Becomes Her-branded graphics and audiograms.

The outreach campaign, led by Grey Horse, earned Chemaly fifteen notable publication mentions and/or features in Refinery29, ELLE, and The Washington Post, among others. The book quickly rose to the top of the Amazon charts and helped propel Chemaly’s career. In 2019, Grey Horse prepared Chemaly for her first TEDWomen talk which reached over 2.1 million views online.

Vanguard

Honoring the legacy of Black women’s political work

Legal historian and Johns Hopkins Professor Martha S. Jones sought the help of Grey Horse in promoting Vanguard, a groundbreaking history of Black women’s pursuit of political power in the United States, from the earliest days of the republic to modern times. In conjunction with the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment and ahead of one of the most critical elections in U.S. history, Martha wanted to ensure that Black women voters, suffragists, and activists would be heard and celebrated.

Grey Horse developed a comprehensive media strategy including a featured appearance on WNYC’s’ The Brian Lehrer Show during Lehrer’s coverage of the 2020 Democratic National Convention, promotion of Vanguard in NPR’s 2020 Special Report on Voting in America, an interview with Preet Bharara on the Stay Tuned with Preet podcast, and more.

Our events team booked and managed several launch events for Martha, including a special Vanguard cocktail party with VIP guests such as Carol Anderson and Eric Foner and public events at Books are Magic, City Lit, and an “Ask Me Anything” session via Reddit’s AskHistorians forum. Vanguard received glowing praise in The New York Times, was featured on C-SPAN’s Book TV, and was lauded by Hillary Clinton, The 1619 Project’s Nikole Hannah-Jones, and Rosario Dawson among many others.

Feminist Fight Club

Proclaiming a manifesto in style

To celebrate the launch of Feminist Fight Club, Jessica Bennett wanted to throw a ‘feminist wedding,’ Grey Horse teamed up with Good Peoples to bring Bennett’s fantasy to life with an exclusive 450-person ‘Support Your Local Girl Gang’ event in Red Hook, Brooklyn. The venue-busting party featured media luminaries from across the world, as well as a variety of feminist vendors and Bennett’s favorite all-female doo-wop band.

Feminist influencers shared their support on social media, which ultimately encouraged thousands to spread the word about Feminist Fight Club. Musical entertainment was provided by PEP, GIPHY photo booths were fueled by Dots the game company, which provided a social-friendly photo experience for attendees, and the majority of donated products were given by female-owned companies from New York and Vermont. The event resulted in hundreds of books sold and event GIFS reaching more than 15 million reviews on GIPHY.

Services
Personal Branding Live Events Brand Activation

Yes We Mustard

Bringing comedian Ginny Hogan’s Audible series to new audiences

Ginny Hogan was launching her first podcast, Yes We Mustard, a scripted, fictional Audible Original series about a corrupt condiment company. Ginny is a comedian with a book from Harper Collins and pieces in The New Yorker and McSweeney’s, but this was her first move into the audio and fiction spaces, and she was eager to find new audiences for her work.

Grey Horse worked with Ginny and the Audible Original team to develop a targeted press campaign and podcast tour that elevated Ginny’s profile and put her in contact with a tastemakers in the industry.

Yes We Mustard was featured on Vulture, Yahoo!, Cracked, and more before it was released, and Ginny was interviewed on podcasts including Go Fact Yourself!, Science Communicatorz, and Never Not Funny. Yes We Mustard was named among Audible’s Best of 2021 for Audio Fiction.

Kindred Media

Building brand recognition one episode at a time

LionTree, a top investment advisory company in the world of media, tech and telecom, sought a publicity and audience engagement campaign for their podcast KindredCast, which is hosted by renowned LionTree CEO Aryeh Bourkoff and focuses on the business of media and features notable guests such as Jon Favreau (Crooked Media), Larry Jackson (Apple Music), and Karlie Kloss (Kode with Klossy).

Working closely with the company’s Head of Growth, Grey Horse crafted an audience engagement strategy, developed a professional voice for KindredCast’s social identity, and targeted press outreach based on each KindredCast episode which resulted in numerous media hits in major magazines and trade publications such as Forbes, Variety, Broadcasting & Cable, and Game Revolution.

Jane Marie’s The Dream

Exploring the world behind MLMs

Little Everywhere, led by Jane Marie (This American Life) and Dann Gallucci (Modest Mouse) strategically launched their new documentary podcast The Dream about the mysterious world of multi-level marketing (MLM) companies.

Grey Horse built a comprehensive public relations strategy that put the podcast on the map, resulting in numerous tier-one placements including features in Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, BBC America, The Los Angeles Times, and Vox Media. Following the launch, The Dream topped Apple Podcasts’ charts for weeks and was named to Apple’s List of Best Podcasts in 2018 and The Atlantic’s 50 Best Podcasts of 2018. In its first season, the podcast reached 10 million downloads.

New York Public Radio

Engaging an everywhere audience

With over thirty-six radio shows and podcasts, produced both in-house and by affiliated production companies, New York Public Radio (NYPR) needed a consistent audience development strategy across a multitude of platforms.

Grey Horse trained over one hundred staff members in workshops that covered analytics, audience engagement, KPI measurement, and more. NYPR’s audience increased tenfold over the next two years, and earned them praise for the ability to provide coverage in the midst of Hurricane Sandy which reached millions.

Highlights
Audience size across platforms increased 10x in two years Reached millions during Hurricane Sandy with vital news and updates
Services
Audience Engagement Social Media Content Creation

PBS Newshour

Leading a legend into the digital era

With a reputation as one of America’s most trusted broadcast institutions, PBS Newshour needed to transition to incorporate a digital-based identity while safeguarding their journalistic standards and integrity.

Grey Horse built a comprehensive social strategy for engaging new audiences across all platforms, showcasing the client’s strengths as producers of thoughtful, high-quality video content. PBS Newshour’s social channels saw massive month-over-month gains, including growth rates of 15%+ on key social platforms, and ultimately culminating in an Emmy nomination for their livestream of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Highlights
Growth rates of 15%+ on key social platforms Emmy nomination for coverage of BP oil spill
Services
Audience Engagement Social Media

Al Jazeera English

Speaking out in the Arab Spring

Al Jazeera, the prominent international news network, wanted to step boldly into the digital age, so they created a broadcast outlet for social media. To support Al Jazeera’s mission of giving a ‘voice to the voiceless,’ Grey Horse created The Stream, a daily show and digital community for broadcast news.

The Stream launched on the day Osama bin Laden was killed in Pakistan and featured the first and only interview with the man who witnessed it. This landmark story led to a revolution in online news programming for Al Jazeera English during the Arab Spring, and The Stream was nominated for the 2011 Emmy Award for Breaking News and won Webby People’s Choice Award in 2012 and Royal Television Society’s Most Innovative Programme in 2012 and the Gracie Award for Outstanding News Talk Show in 2013.

Highlights
Emmy Nomination, Breaking News Royal Television Society Most Innovative Programme Award Webby People’s Choice Award The Gracie Award
Services
Audience Engagement Social Media

The Opposite of Hate

Throwing a gala at the Guggenheim

Called the “party of the year” by Cosmopolitan’s Laura Brounstein, this 500 person gala was one of the most ambitious book launch events in recent memory. Held in partnership with brands like Tinder, Lifetime, and Hint Water, it marked the release of CNN commentator Sally Kohn’s first book.

The gala was hosted at the iconic Guggenheim Museum in New York and attended by media luminaries like Katie Couric and London. The Resistance Revival Chorus, made famous by their politically-charged performance at the Women’s March, headlined the evening’s entertainment.

Co-hosted by Shonda Rhimes and Katy Perry, the event was held to benefit the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.

Highlights
Over $250,000 in sponsorship money raised Co-hosted by Katy Perry and Shonda Rhimes Called “party of the year” by Cosmopolitan
Services
Live Events Audience Engagement

MIT Technology Review

Making science tech feel like magic

Recognizing the need to progress in the digital era, this 120-year-old magazine needed new practices in order to expand their readership and attract a younger audience. Grey Horse led a series of workshops and trained staff in engagement techniques and social media tools. We provided strategic guidance on the development of a series of podcasts, videos, and digital communities that allowed MIT Technology Review to reach their intended audiences. As a result of these efforts, the magazine achieved a 3x increase in Twitter engagement rates. MIT Technology Review was also named one of the best scientific content creators by Synthego.

When the magazine hosted their first CES event, they worked with Grey Horse to create a unique, memorable experience for c-suite guests unfamiliar with the brand. Providing an escape from the standard technology-packed CES events, Grey Horse helped MIT Technology Review host a memorable, intimate dinner at a secret location in the desert: Calico Basin, Red Rock Canyon. Fifty hand-curated guests joined the impactful, memorable event and welcomed the only CES event without WiFi.

Highlights
3x increase in Twitter engagement rates Named one of the best scientific content creators by Synthego
Services
Content Creation Audience Engagement Social Media Event Production

United Nations

Training digital world ambassadors

In 2018, the United Nations lacked consistent messaging on its social media channels. In order to create a streamlined way to standardize its social media posting practices across one hundred channels in eight different languages, Grey Horse led a series of in-house workshops for over twenty United Nations social media specialists. With Grey Horse’s direction, the United Nations developed formalized guidelines and detailed best practices for their respective platforms. Workshop participants reported dramatic boosts in confidence dealing with daily routines, high-pressure situations, and social media messaging. The United Nations now has profiles on all major social media platforms and more than 50 accounts.

Highlights
Managing nearly 100 channels (in 8 languages) Optimized response times for breaking events
Services
Social Media Audience Engagement

The Ocean Agency

Fighting climate change through engagement

This international non-profit combines creativity, technology and powerful partnerships to drive awareness for ocean conservation, but in 2017, they wanted to build impactful content marketing around coral reef conservation which led Grey Horse to create a brand voice, style, and tone for outreach to funders, partners, and the general public.

Grey Horse provided strategic, high-level public relations messaging through a series of ghostwritten blog posts that were published in major outlets such as National Geographic, TIME, and Google. Within a few months, The Ocean Agency amassed thousands of new social media followers, with growth rates reaching well over 50%. Grey Horse’s efforts helped The Ocean Agency and its Netflix feature documentary, Chasing Coral, make the shortlist for an Academy Awards nomination. That same year, the French government appointed The Ocean Agency as the official coordinator of the International Year of the Reef for 2018.

Smith Mullin

Protecting those who tell the truth

One of America’s leading legal firms had a delicate situation: a prominent client was filing a lawsuit against her employer, placing her in the center of a highly contentious public conversation. Grey Horse provided digital security to safeguard the client’s data, and trained her in crisis messaging on social media. We developed an engagement strategy that minimized her legal exposure while allowing her to speak out with confidence against injustice.

Highlights
1.8 billion media impressions 50+ pieces of earned media coverage
Services
Crisis Communications Social Media

WNYC

Launching a hit podcast

WNYC was about to launch a new podcast starring Alec Baldwin, “Here’s the Thing.” They needed help developing a digital audience and creating on-air engagement strategies.

Grey Horse created a content strategy and editorial calendar across social media platforms that enabled WNYC’s team to attract (and keep) thousands of new followers. We also led an aggressive public relations outreach campaign that led to media coverage and reviews in a wide variety of outlets.

The show quickly reached the top of the iTunes charts and remained there for years.

Highlights
3k iTunes reviews (4.5 rating) Multi-month run at top of iTunes charts
Services
Public Relations Audience Engagement Social Media

Profile

Founder

Kate Gardiner
Founder & CEO

Grey Horse is led by Kate Gardiner, a media strategist known for sparking grand initiatives between people, media, and technology.

After being named to Forbes’ 30under30 for pioneering the use of social media as an audience-building tool for publishers, Kate has made a specialty of leveraging new tools to focus the world’s attention. She has collaborated on the development of the world’s best tools for social media management, for example, and helped major publications strategize around monetized content distribution at scale. She has been an important strategic mind in a variety of globally-oriented communications situations, ranging from an early start covering the BP Oil Spill to the global tragedies that shaped the Arab Spring, Hurricane Sandy and the #MeToo movement. Her work has garnered Emmy nominations, spots on Oscar shortlists, and countless national media features.

Kate is proud of building an unstoppable, all-female team at Grey Horse, to whom she serves as friend and mentor.

Elevating women is at the heart of Kate’s personal and professional work. In addition to lifting up women in her network, Kate serves as an Advisor in the Built By Girls Wave program, offering 1:1 career guidance to young women and non-binary students, and mentors journalists through the Online News Association. She’s also on the advisory board of the Armah Institute of Emotional Justice, an organization that uses creative tools to engage with legacies of untreated trauma. She is also a strong supporter of GallopNYC, a therapeutic horse riding program for children and youth in New York City.

Kate frequently joins and moderates panels at conferences including SXSW and the Summit Series, and has earned awards from a wide range of journalism and news organizations. She is a fellow on the National Committee on US China Relations, a NextJ fellow with the Radio Television and News Directors’ Association, an Advisor to Innovation Social, and an active member of the Interactive Emmys Committee.

Kate splits her time between New York City and Lake Geneva, Wisconsin.

Team

Grey Horse team members have served as startup founders, magazine editors, social media directors, and more. Together, we have deep experience in journalism, public relations, design, business development, education, project management, content production, and law. With staff and partners based around the country, we offer local expertise with international perspectives.

This is the team that makes authors into bestsellers, executives into global thought leaders, and movements into sensations.