One of the Jersey girls behind @NJGov joins Kivvit

Pearl Gabel is now the agency’s director of brand strategy and digital integration.

Pearl Gabel
Pearl Gabel

ASBURY PARK, NJ: Pearl Gabel, one of the Jersey girls behind the state’s official Twitter account, @NJGov, has joined Kivvit as director of brand strategy and digital integration.

She started in the newly created role on Monday, based in the agency’s Asbury Park, New Jersey, office. Reporting to chief brand strategist Steve Miller, she will also work across Kivvit’s offices in New York City, Chicago, Miami, Boston and Washington, DC. 

Gabel will develop creative direction and content for Kivvit clients and new business proposals and ensure the integration of brand strategy into digital engagements as campaigns are developed and implemented. 

“Kivvit is a public affairs firm that has a deep policy and institutional get-it-done knowledge,” Gabel said. “It is expanding creatively to rival Madison Avenue. Creative has to match the mission to break through the noise. Creative is the frontier here.” 

Gabel had served as New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s digital director since 2018. She gained national recognition for growing the Murphy administration’s social media presence through new, innovative and funny approaches.

Gabel established the state’s first official Twitter account, @NJGov. In December 2019, in response to the question “Who let New Jersey have a Twitter?” @NJGov tweeted back, “Your mom.” The tweet generated nearly 475,000 likes and drew worldwide attention.

The state Twitter account has more than 360,000 followers, more than any other state. Gabel also set up the @GovMurphy and @FirstLadyNJ Twitter accounts.

During the pandemic, the governor’s digital team is playing a key role in disseminating information and advocating for public safety. It is using livestream and rapid response video production, email, graphics, influencers and innovative use of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok and Snapchat, according to a statement from Kivvit.

Gabel was named to PRWeek’s Power List 2020

“It is extremely traumatic to leave @NJGov,” said Gabel. “It was an incredible community for me. Working with them was a privilege and the honor of my life.”

She said Kivvit managing partner Maggie Moran convinced her to “take that energy and passion and messaging and work with nonprofits on different projects” in a role at the agency.

Megan Coyne, Murphy’s social media manager, said via email, “With Pearl’s vision, we transformed the way the government can communicate through social media. While there is no replacing Pearl, our digital team will continue to engage New Jerseyans with the creative, innovative, authentic Jersey content that they’ve grown accustomed to seeing the past three years.”

The state promoted Coyne this month from the role of digital assistant. 

Previously, Gabel was New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s director of video.

Gabel started her career as a photojournalist, writer and video producer for news outlets including the Daily News, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, NBC News, and Reuters.

Kivvit posted 37% revenue growth in 2019 to more than $33 million, according to PRWeek’s Agency Business Report 2020.

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