alex-skatell-nrsc

Republican Group's New Media Director Stresses Digital Content

  |  February 18, 2011   |  Comments

Alex Skatell hails from the Republican Governors Association. He replaces an exec who just moved to Facebook.

alex-skatell-nrsc With the National Republican Senatorial Committee's last new media director off to a new job in Facebook's Washington, D.C. office, Alex Skatell has filled the role. The just-hired new media director recently held a similar position at the Republican Governors Association, and aims to ensure the NRSC has the resources to produce quality websites, ads, and video.

"I want to build out a more robust media operation," said Skatell, who started his gig February 1. "I'm glad that they put such an emphasis on [digital media] here. The key is going to be finding the right people to help produce the content and not necessarily just form the ideas."

A goal for Skatell (pictured above) is to be able to produce content supporting Republican Senatorial candidates and campaigns in-house, in part because it's more cost-efficient. "If we can, [we should] do more media in house," he said.

According to Skatell, the NRSC's former digital strategist, Katie Harbath - who recently joined Facebook - helped establish a legacy of data and analytics measurement that he plans to carry on. In its work building Web content to generate donations and communicate messages, the organization does splash page and donation page testing, tracks traffic sources to determine which sites drive the most e-mail signups, and measures "what was the final thing that got them to donate," he explained.

Educating Senate campaigns about the use of data and digital tools promises to be an important aspect of Skatell's position. Indeed, Harbath also demonstrated the significance of evangelizing digital tools in a message she sent to GOP Senate campaigns about a week before election day in 2010. "Wanted to let you know that over the weekend the [Republican National Committee] shared with AOL some voter data so now you can target Republicans by precinct, gender, age and voting habits (Hard-R to Soft-R) on the AOL network," she wrote in the e-mail.

Overall, Skatell said he believes Republicans have come a long way since the 2008 election, and are now more willing to invest in digital. "If you ask any of the [digital media and technology] vendors , they'll tell you that ...Republicans saw the power of the Internet in '08 - and we needed to compete."

At the moment, he's focused on choosing vendors for e-mail, web, mobile, and advertising related services. That, coupled with big picture strategic planning for the next two years, will encompass much of his time. Skatell's work as director of new media and technology at the RGA provided a lot of similar experience in IT, web development, digital advertising, video production and social media marketing.

He indicated the importance of cultivating quality design and production staff - or partners - and praised the creative and production people he worked with at the RGA. However, he suggested the organization lacked in production strength when he first joined, and in part, it required working with people from outside the political realm to enhance web and advertising production. "When I came to the RGA, the problem I saw with the GOP was there were a lot of smart people with good ideas, but few people properly executing those ideas. We didn't have real strong production [capabilities]."

Hiring other digital staff may come down the road, but before that happens, said Skatell, "I need to spend a little more time here, and just get a feel for the organization."

Tags:

ClickZ Live Chicago Join the Industry's Leading eCommerce & Direct Marketing Experts in Chicago
ClickZ Live Chicago (Nov 3-6) will deliver over 50 sessions across 4 days and 10 individual tracks, including Data-Driven Marketing, Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email. Check out the full agenda and register by Friday, Oct 3 to take advantage of Early Bird Rates!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kate Kaye

Kate Kaye was Managing Editor at ClickZ News until October 2012. As a daily reporter and editor for the original news source, she covered beats including digital political campaigns and government regulation of the online ad industry. Kate is the author of Campaign '08: A Turning Point for Digital Media, the only book focused on the paid digital media efforts of the 2008 presidential campaigns. Kate created ClickZ's Politics & Advocacy section, and is the primary contributor to the one-of-a-kind section. She began reporting on the interactive ad industry in 1999 and has spoken at several events and in interviews for television, radio, print, and digital media outlets. You can follow Kate on Twitter at @LowbrowKate.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

ClickZ Today is our #1 newsletter. Get a daily dose of digital marketing.

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

IBM: Social Analytics - The Science Behind Social Media Marketing

IBM Social Analytics: The Science Behind Social Media Marketing
80% of internet users say they prefer to connect with brands via Facebook. 65% of social media users say they use it to learn more about brands, products and services. Learn about how to find more about customers' attitudes, preferences and buying habits from what they say on social media channels.

Marin Software: The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising

The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising
Latest research reveals 68% higher revenue per conversion for marketers who integrate their search & social advertising. In addition to the research results, this whitepaper also outlines 5 strategies and 15 tactics you can use to better integrate your search and social campaigns.

Resources

Jobs

    • Digital Marketing Analyst
      Digital Marketing Analyst (GovLoop) - Washington D.C.Are you passionate about audience acquisition? Love effective copy and amazingly effective...
    • Product Specialist
      Product Specialist (Agora Inc. ) - BaltimoreDescription: The Product Specialist is hyper-focused on the customer experience and ensures that our...
    • Partnerships Senior Coordinator
      Partnerships Senior Coordinator (Zappos.com, Inc.) - Las VegasZappos IP, Inc. is looking for a Partnerships Senior Coordinator! Why join us? Our...