Jim Messina

Jim Messina

Co-Founder & Principal

Jim Messina is an internationally recognized expert in reaching and informing target audiences through contemporary mass media. Messina is Co-founder and Principal at Signal Interactive Media.

As President Obama’s 2012 campaign manager, Messina abandoned every step of a traditional presidential campaign and merged media, analytics, and politics in an unprecedented way. Messina’s approach to media established the modern presidential campaign—Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt called it “the best‐run campaign ever.”

Through his full-service strategic consultancy, The Messina Group, Messina continues to provide strategic consulting to presidents and prime ministers worldwide and help organizations across the public and private sectors achieve their goals. Messina and his team have supervised over $1.1 billion in paid advertising. His group currently designs media plans for political campaigns, nonprofits, and leading corporations, from top Hollywood studios to international publishers.

Insert caption text. President Barack Obama and Jim Messina celebrate the success of the 2012 campaign.

Messina defined the modern approach to identify, reach, and effectively engage individuals through political advertising. Messina’s “winning formula” is rooted in data analytics. In developing media plans, his group is guided by the belief that data, analytics, and testing can deliver dramatic improvements in efficacy per dollar. During the Obama Campaign, he saved $40 million by applying testing and data analytics to paid advertising. For example, to identify voters, his team compiled a score between 1 and 100 and predicted the vote for every single registered voter in Ohio—nearly 8 million people. His ability to test and analyze data enabled him to predict the early voting results within 1 percentage point nationwide, and the total results within 0.2 percentage points in Florida, a state in which 8.4 million people voted. As Time Magazine reported, “[A]ssumptions were rarely left in place without numbers to back them up.”

Messina’s approach and his group’s wide-ranging, relevant experience are reflected in Signal’s innovative notice strategies—whether inspired by voter persuasion campaigns, government communications programs to ensure citizens feel heard, issue awareness via grassroots efforts, or data-driven guidance to corporations gleaned from qualitative and quantitative research.

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