Puttin’ on the Critz

New Media Campaigns wasted no time in posting an instant case study on their role in Mark Critz’s win in PA-12 this week. Amazingly, the driving theme of the online campaign was a driving theme of most offline campaigns: speed kills.

The online team employed a phased rollout approach, recognizing that the need to have something up online early trumped the need to launch a website with all the bells and whistles.  And the back end content management system of the site was built so that anyone could update it – in other words, instead of the “website guy” having the keys and being the only one able to drive the campaign’s online presence, everyone got their own car.  It provided for a streamlined, slick, and – ultimately – victorious campaign.

The online campaign didn’t win PA-12 for Mark Critz by itself, but no online campaign is capable of that.  It was successful by the measure that matters: it didn’t get in the way of a the other parts of a well-run campaign.

3 thoughts on “Puttin’ on the Critz

  1. Jim,

    Thanks for reviewing our case! Real quick, we’re New Media Campaigns (http://newmediacampaigns.com) not New Media Strategies — I think they’re a Republican-only firm.

    Appreciate your thoughts and agree with most of them. At the end, you say:

    “It was successful by the measure that matters: it didn’t get in the way of a the other parts of a well-run campaign.”

    I think it’s more correct to say we “complemented” the other parts of the campaign, rather than saying we were successful by just not “getting in the way.” While I agree that no online campaign alone will be the source of victory (most online consultants are unfortunately hesitant to admit that), I do think an online campaign plays more of a role than just staying out of the way of the other moving parts. It’s important that it complements and helps the other areas of the campaign, hence why we were frequently chatting with the DCCC and the direct mail team.

    Let me know your thoughts and appreciate you taking the time to write this up (and correct our name, ha).


    1. Thanks for reading Clay – and my apologies on the error in the name, which I fixed. (Funny, too, because as I was writing I was thinking about how cool your “NMC” logo is…)

      Forgive my tongue-in-cheek comment on “staying out of the way” as well – but given your comment, I think you got what I was trying to say for the most part. But one thing I specifically liked was how you integrated online tactics as part of the overall campaign strategy through that CMS – and didn’t selfishly guard the keys to the kingdom to ensure your own fiefdom of power. Unfortunately, too many consultants seem to think that to make themselves invaluable, they have to exert control. (I should note that I’ve had good luck with consultants in that respect.)

      I’m definitely with you on the difficulty of the “magic in a box” theory of online campaigning. I think we all see too much of the inflated expectations fueled by inflated promises.

      But most importantly (grudging) congratulations on the win!

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