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ClickZ: Partners in New D.C. Firm Cut Teeth on GOP Controversy

by CRAFT | Media / Digital

This morning CRAFT was featured in ClickZ’s Politics and Advocacy section focusing on our new business model.

Partners in New D.C. Firm Cut Teeth on GOP Controversy

By Kate Kaye

The man behind a controversial video portraying Barack Obama as the messiah, and a recent video attacking the U.S. Attorney General, is just one of several partners of a just-launched Washington, D.C. political consultancy. Another partner was hired in ’06 to help buffer Senator George Allen’s image among bloggers following his infamous “macaca moment.”

The group of right-leaning heavy-hitters from the online and offline campaign worlds has come together to form Craft, a consultancy aiming to remove barriers between digital campaign efforts and traditional disciplines such as direct mail and television.

“What we’re able to do is blend all these disciplines together…to create a more harmonious and stronger message,” said Web video producer Justin Germany, co-founder and partner of Craft.

Advertising agencies serving commercial clients have long sought to remove so-called silos from their internal structures which often separate digital teams from those handling television or other traditional media. What Craft may have going for it is the fact that it has originated with this goal in mind, rather than attempting to change a structure staffers have grown accustomed to.

When it comes to Germany’s medium of choice – Web video – that means shooting for Web and television simultaneously. “When we shoot something for a client it’s all multipurpose,” he said. The lines between the two “start blurring, start disappearing.” Germany has served as the McCain ’08 campaign’s director of online media and Bush-Cheney ’04′s online campaign videographer and editor. He’ll be working closely with co-founder and managing partner Brian Donahue, the firm’s resident TV expert. Donahue also worked on Bush-Cheney ’04, and has done work with the Republican National Committee.

Partner Jon Henke gained notoriety in part through his outreach to bloggers on behalf of George Allen following his infamous “macaca” comment, which contributed to the Virginia Senator’s 2006 re-election campaign loss. Henke later worked as new media advisor to the Senate Republicans, and consulted for Fred Thompson’s ’08 presidential campaign.

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