Sunday, December 2, 2012

Who is Zac Moffatt

His last tweet was a retweet of Ann Romney “This was more than a campaign - this was a national movement. @MittRomney and I will always be thankful for your support.” And then the account went blank. And so goes the life of the Romney campaigns Digital Director, Zac Moffatt. Assumedly, Moffatt has returned to Targeted Victory, the online advertising agency he co-founded.
I do not know much about Moffatt, other than that he attended Republican National Committee (RNC) with a friend of mine. For a little balance I skimmed a small selection the various interviews that Moffatt gave during the campaign (and some of his personal social media accounts) to take measure of the man and the digital campaign he coordinated for the Romney/Ryan campaign. This is what I found.
His Approach and Results
  • It seems from interviews that Moffat understood that the Romney campaign needed  to mobilize, indicating in an interview with Greg Ferenstein that this will also “be the first campaign in history where campaign moves from fundraising to mobilization”, focusing on engagement in multiple interviews.
  • Moffatt claimed in an interview during the campaign that the “average Romney Tweet” “gets retweeted three times more than Obama’s”, but he did not indicate how he knew that.
  • In multiple interviews, he characterizes the social media role as “digital advertising” and that is what his company Targeted Victory is; an on-line advertising company.
  • Moffat has indicated that digital campaigning is meant to amplify the message on television, not replace it. [i]
  • Compared to the Obama campaign which remained silent on its strategy, Zac Moffatt spent quite a lot of time giving interviews.
Innovation from 2008 Campaign
  • Moffatt was behind partnering with Mass Relevance to broadcast the conversation on Twitter for the convention and television audience.  He quipped in an interview with Hamish McKenzie that having the tweets displayed during the convention would have attracted more attention if it was a Obama campaign idea.
  • According to Moffat, one of the biggest changes since the 2008 campaign is that the digital director is considered a member of executive staff by the Republican party, at the same level as a communication director, setting the agenda. As digital director, he had the authority to bring on board talent with online skills sets to “amplify” the ground game efforts. [ii]
Silicon Startups
Personal Life
  • According to Moffatt’s Facebook page he is married and has a daughter. He uses his Facebook page for personal information, but with Romney campaign connections. His Facebook account is active and was in use as of December 1st.
  • Former Chief of Staff for NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg
  • Previously served as Republican National Committee’s director of political education
  • As part of Targeted Victory, Moffat led Marco Rubio’s digital election campaign[iii]
Now it seems that Moffatt is a target for the failure of Romney campaign. Regardless, of the quality of his and his team’s effort, Targeted Victory was paid $17 million in addition to the salaries and bonuses paid to Moffatt and his team for a $26 million digital media campaign.[iv]


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