Liberate Media has managed PR for Purple since 2013, supporting its launch as a pioneering startup social WiFi provider and its evolution into an ‘Intelligent Spaces’ company with 20 million users across 125 countries.

Our PR campaign has delivered a range of broadcast, national, vertical, trade, consumer and B2B coverage. This includes reviews, product launches, business and investment news stories, and opinion pieces.

This case study focuses on a campaign to support Purple’s early compliance to GDPR legislation, reinforcing its position as a leader in the digital space. GDPR is the most important change in data privacy regulation in 20 years, harmonising and strengthening existing data privacy laws across Europe.

GDPR compliance demands unambiguous consent before users’ personal data can be used for marketing purposes; and companies that breach consumers’ rights will face steep fines.


  • Publicise Purple’s achievement: 1st WiFi provider to be GDPR compliant
  • Position Purple in media & wider audience as a ‘Consumer Champion’
  • Support the launch of Purple’s Profile Portal, which gives consumers access to, and control over, data collected by Purple and its customers
  • Generate high profile media coverage in technology & mainstream media
  • Achieve coverage in client’s wish-list titles: Mashable, Nationals, TNW
  • Drive traffic to Purple website through links in articles


  • Light-hearted press release to combat journalist fatigue over GDPR > Compelling consumer hook to drive widespread media pick-up
> Underpin with messaging around GDPR & Purple’s early compliance > Pre-seed release with wish-list media to give the story momentum
  • Media liaison – identify story angles & provide supporting info & imagery

22,000 Sign-Up to Clean Grubby Loos in Return for Free WiFi

We developed a press release around an experiment carried out by Purple, which illustrated the lack of awareness among consumers of what they are signing-up to when they access free WiFi.

Purple inserted a spoof “Community Service Clause” into its T&Cs for two weeks, which resulted in thousands of users within Purple’s network of branded WiFi hotspots unwittingly agreeing to carry out 1,000 hours of community service, including tasks such as:

  • Providing hugs to stray cats and dogs
  • Cleaning portaloos at festivals and events
  • Painting snail shells


The primary media target, Mashable, snapped up the story. It was shared 6k times in a few hours and became one of the platform’s biggest stories over the next few days. The final number of shares reached 12.9k.

The story was amplified in other influential media targets, including the UK national press and major digital titles:

  • Mail Online
  • Guardian
  • Independent
  • Mirror
  • Sun
  • Metro
  • TNW
  • Gizmodo
  • CNET
  • Unilad
  • MSN
  • AOL

Then, everything went a bit crazy. The whole world started to write about Purple’s T&Cs experiment…

This campaign produced incredible levels of quality, international coverage in national, digital, business, and trade titles.
As a brand awareness exercise, it catapulted Purple into the consciousness of influencers, potential clients and the general public. Purple’s leading position on GDPR compliance was widely reported, creating interest around its new Profile Portal.

Purple was firmly positioned as a ‘Consumer Champion’.
Liberate Media’s charm offensive, asking journalists to publish links to Purple’s website, was highly effective. Traffic sent to Purple’s website grew by 51% during July 2017.
Purple continues to dominate search terms linked to key phrases such as GDPR, data privacy, WiFi and T&Cs.

What the client said…

We wanted to turn the traditionally dry subject of ‘compliance’ into a consumer story that would not only drive awareness of our GDPR-ready product, but position Purple as the consumer champion for data transparency.
Dean Cookson, Head of Marketing at Purple
Working with the Liberate team we achieved that and more. Our T&Cs experiment story went around the world in hours, and the coverage continued to roll in throughout the next month. Liberate’s ongoing consultancy on media engagement and strategy for the launch of the story was executed perfectly. We blew our objectives out of the water in terms of target titles and reach, and Purple’s awareness has never been higher.
Dean Cookson, Head of Marketing at Purple