Following some misguided comments by newly-appointed Newcastle United Director of Football Joe Kinnear about the fans and the manner in which the appointment had been communicated to the media, Calacus MD David Alexander was asked to comment by ITN:
PR expert David Alexander said Joe Kinnear's radio interviews would do little to endear him to the Newcastle fans.
Alexander, a CIPR chartered PR practitioner, said the club should have "controlled the message" of his appointment:
There’s no doubt that the appointment of Joe Kinnear could have been handled far better. He should also be instructed to only comment through official club channels rather than give unsolicited interviews that have created this storm in the first place.
As we’ve seen already, getting him to be ‘on-message’ is a tall order. He’s proud of speaking his mind and has clashed with the media in the past.
But he should have been under strict instructions not to speak to the media before the club made an official announcement.
That way, the club could have controlled the message and ensured that the right things were said and that manager Alan Pardew was supportive.
His comments about Geordies have been less than helpful at building bridges.
DAVID ALEXANDER, MANAGING DIRECTOR, CALACUS PUBLIC RELATIONS
He suggested that the club's management should demonstrate a togetherness in order to win back the fans. A transfer move for former striker Andy Carroll would help alleviate the antagonism.
The best thing Newcastle’s PR department can do now is hold a press conference where Kinnear, Pardew and a director such as Derek Llambias discuss the strategy to move the club forward and move the discussion on from Kinnear’s appointment.
And the best way to prove that Kinnear’s appointment is worthwhile would be to bring back the prodigal son Andy Carroll to Newcastle, which along with plenty of positive and sincere messaging about his respect for the Newcastle fans, would go some way to alleviating the communication challenges in the short term.