In the summer of 2012, the country was heavily involved in the presidential race of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney was leading the polls in July, he was gaining more of Obama's niche with the youngsters, and Obama's campaign team was in trouble.
Romney and his team saw how President Obama won the 2008 election using a strategic plan to make sure they sealed not the popular vote, but the Electoral College. A good majority of this planning and campaigning from Obama's team came from his social media and outreach to younger voters online.
Romney was winning the polls, but he was still behind in every aspect in terms of social media. Romney needed to boost his viral presence, and he contacted several companies to do so including Publicist Michael Bentley.
Bentley ran seven unique "twitter booster companies", including 20Hub and DaliHub, and he had been involved in "faking social media" since the early days of mypace.com. Bentley had also been linked to the boosting of some high profile accounts that might or might not include Kim Kardashian and Kanye West.
Bentley was willing to help out Romney and his staff. He was a willing Republican kid with the online and social media knowledge that Romney's crew knew could help and help instantly. Romney's Twitter jumped with 150,000 new followers in just one weekend in July.
The only problem was, Bentley wasn't a Republican, and beyond making some quick money, he wasn't interested in Romney winning the election.
Bentley was paid, and he did exactly what he was paid to do. He provided Romney with the followers. Romney didn't care who was following him, he just needed the boost to look credible online.
Bentley and his associates immediately leaked the material to all the press with the headline, "Romney Twitter account gets upsurge in fake followers, but from where"
The media quickly picked up on the leaked story and ran with it. Romney lost a ton of credibility with the younger generation, and slowly Obama took the road to a second term.
It was a clever ploy. When Romney's team asked Bentley, he simple told them that he would have put his name in the article to get more business. It was a done deal, Bentley was paid for a service, he provided the service.
Bentley is set to sit down with Time Magazine contributing writer, Joe Klein to discuss the entire plan on Monday May 5th. Bentley released the following statement:
"When the order first came in I thought it was a Romney parody account, a joke, or something. They didn't send an NDA, They didn't ask any questions, it was a pretty simple purchase. They didn't ask for targeted followers so we had some fun. We added 10 thousand accounts from Iraq based twitters, we had over 400 fake Bin Laden accounts not only added, but they re-tweeted him automatically. We had fun with it."
Besides being a successful publicist, Bentley is also an A&R for Universal Music Group, an accomplished producer, on air personality and writer.
For more information on Michael Bentley please visit www.MichaelBentleyLive.com