Media Consultant, Republican National Committee
Laura Crawford, 35, created the RNC's 11-minute John Kerry "Flip-Flop" video in 2004. For 2008, she's producing all of the RNC's viral and TV work, as well as running campaignads.org, a political, "multipartisan" user-generated site in which the 30- and 60-second spots that get the most votes and donations will air on TV.
"For the next 17 months, I'll be on call 24 hours a day, because you never know what any of the candidates are going to say or do. Usually by the time I get up in the morning, the RNC has already emailed me some video and a couple of sentences about the message they want me to get out. I get them an actual piece edited and animated with a script and voice-over by early afternoon.
For example, if one of the Democrats says something that we want to get out there, we will come up with a Web video. That's what it's mainly about—exposing the facts. Like in '04, we knew what John Kerry was saying to the public at the time about Iraq was completely different than what he used to say about it, and thought, 'We need to expose this to the American voters.' I try to go the entertaining or humorous route most times, because then we're reaching people who otherwise wouldn't be looking for Web video from the RNC.
My prediction for '08 is that user-generated content is going to force candidates to go positive with campaign advertising because the online airwaves will be flooded with negative stuff. That actually might be the biggest plus out of it all."
A version of this article appeared in the June 2007 issue of Fast Company magazine.