Garden State Forward - Digital & Mail

We worked with Garden State Forward to develop a robust digital and direct mail persuasion campaign for an IE to support NJEA member Kristen Zadroga-Hart off the line in the 31st Legislative District.  Our digital program was designed to reenforce our mail through precise targeting of the electorate.  Our program consisted of: 

  • IP and Smart Cookie Targeted Ads to likely voters
  • Targeted Facebook advertising 
  • IP and Smart Cookie Targeted Pre-Roll Advertising 
  • A robust mobile targeting/re-targeting campaign 

The results: 

We served over 3 million impressions to our targeted voter list, including 344,788 completed plays of our pre-roll ads.  With minimal name ID, a short campaign runway of roughly three weeks and the lack of the line and a natural base, Kristen improved the challenger's vote share significantly relative to the prior election. 

Garden State Forward Targeted Display Ads

Garden State Forward Targeted Display Ads

Strong Leadership Now (Little Falls Mayor and Council)


After four decades of Republican control, Democrats James Damiano, Maria Cordonnier and Anthony Sgobba were able to flip the Little Falls Mayor and Council to Democratic control.  We used a combination of direct mail, field technology, and targeted digital advertising to set the narrative and push back against our opponents' negative attacks.  

We coupled digital advertising with full mail program, including a 2017 AAPC Pollie winning piece, to drive our message home.

  • Served over 100,000 impressions across platform
  • Executed a separate advertising campaign targeted to specific buildings at Montclair State University to drive turnout amongst students in dorms that are located on the Little Falls section of campus. 

The Results 

Damiano, Cordonnier and Sgobba won by an historic margin in Little Falls.  Additionally, we were able to help propel record turnout, while minimizing voter drop-off in the 9th district (Montclair State University), which ultimately put Hillary Clinton over the top in the town and provided the Damiano team added vote cushion.   

NJEA November School Elections Committee - Carteret Ballot Initiative 

Carteret Mayor, Dan Reiman was seeking to change the structure of the Board of Education from an elected board to an appointed board.  NJEA came to Publitics to mount a last minute campaign to stop the initiative from passing.  Mayor Reiman threw his full weight and organization behind the initiative, rolling out endorsements from other elected officials, executing a canvassing campaign and a direct mail program.  Additionally, the question itself was written in such a way that would potentially encourage voters to vote "yes," making the campaign an uphill climb.   

We executed a full mail, digital and phone program aimed at creating a surround sound effect on our messaging.  

  • Generated over 750,000 impressions targeted to 8,000 likely voters
  • Developed "sticky" content for our mailers that drove the online conversation
  • Developed sharable social media content that spread to online groups set up by Carteret citizens
  • Developed ad creative that reenforced the overall messaging of the campaign 

Chivukula for Congress (CD12)

The Challenge

Upendra Chivukula is a New Jersey Assemblyman representing the 17th Legislative District. When Congressman Rush Holt announced his retirement, Assemblyman Chivukula, along with three other candidates, threw their hats in the ring. The candidates were State Senator Linda Greenstein, Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman and Princeton Physicist Andrew Zwicker. From the beginning, we faced numerous challenges.

Rep. Holt announced his retirement in late February, leaving just over three months to raise money and organize a campaign for the June 3rd Democratic Primary.

From the beginning, Assemblyman Chivukula was characterized as an underdog, which was further exacerbated by early polling which had him capturing just 7% of the vote.

Adapted TV advertising for pre-roll and social media. 

We had to help show that Assemblyman Chivukula was not only a viable candidate, but also a real contender in the Democratic primary race.

The Approach

We helped build a communications program that was tailored to the short campaign timeline and relied heavily upon digital tools. By marrying traditional PR and messaging with cutting edge digital tools and top-notch video work from renowned political ad firm Putnam Partners , we were able to help turn the race around.

State of the Art Website and Tools

We needed to tell visitors a story in just a few short seconds of them landing on the page. We chose to design the site with paralax sections that would help the visitor flow through the storyline and messaging.

List Building and Digital Fundraising

Given the short election timeline and our deficit in the polls due to low name identification, we had to raise money quickly. We began building an email list of targeted supporters through social media channels, display and search advertising. We also gave our supporters tools, through Nationbuilder, to recruit their friends.

As our list grew we began our email fundraising campaign. Several variations of each email blast were tested and the best ones would go out. The PubliticsPR+Digital team closely monitored variations in frequency and timing of the emails to achieve optimal fundraising. From a list of 14,000 good emails, we generated over $55,000 in just three short months.

Digital Advertising

The media landscape is extraordinarily segmented. Different voters consume different media at different times. While television is still very important, it is essential to reach out to audiences on other platforms. During the campaign we used a mix of social, display and pre-roll video advertising to reach voters.

The Results

As a result of integrating digital into every aspect of the campaign, we were able to get more bang for our buck on the communications and outreach side of the campaign. Everything we did offline had a digital component that helped make critical extra touches with voters, supporters and donors, which allowed us to move numbers and ultimately capture 300% of the vote share relative to public polling two weeks out from the election.