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Tech leader Featured

11:25am EDT June 28, 2005

When it comes to politics, the power of technology to rally followers and spread a message is often taken for granted.

But it hasn't always been so. Just ask Mike Connell.

In 1995, after working for nearly a decade as a database and computer guru in various political campaigns, Connell started New Media Communications, dedicated to using developing technologies such as the Internet to enhance political campaigns.

The only problem was, there weren't any clients. Political parties still relied on methods such as phone calls, direct mail campaigns and door-to-door canvassing to reach voters. Internet service was not yet a household item, and politicians didn't want to invest in such a limited resource. Connell's innovative idea was years ahead of his client base.

It wasn't until 1997, two years after he started his business, that Connell began to find work. Jeb Bush, a gubernatorial candidate in Florida, called Connell about a Web site and Internet strategy, establishing New Media Communications as the leader in new technology.

Since then, the company has developed Web sites, created Internet strategies and launched e-mail campaigns for clients such as the Bush-Cheney presidential campaigns in 2000 and 2004, the Republican National Committee, the National Crime Prevention Council, and for various senators and governors.

In 2000, Connell orchestrated a cell phone text messaging campaign in Slovenia that got record numbers of youth to vote, and that has been replicated in every major European election since.

New Media Communications: www.technomania.com(330) 659-7373