Mark Textor

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Mark Textor
Born Mark A. Textor
Darwin, Northern Territory
Nationality Australian
Alma mater Australian National University
Occupation Co-founder, Crosby Textor

Mark Textor (born in Darwin in 1966) is a conservative political campaign and corporate strategist and social researcher, representing both Australian and international clients. He is co-founder and managing director of Crosby|Textor, an international consulting firm.[1] Textor was born and raised in the Northern Territory, the son of one of the Northern Territory’s longest serving senior policemen. He holds a degree in economics from the Australian National University in Canberra. He is a full member of the Australian Market & Social Research Society (AMSRS). He lives in Sydney with his wife, Susie, and has three sons.


Early years[edit]

Textor's political career began in 1988 as a researcher in the office of Marshall Perron, the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory, where he taught himself polling techniques prior to testing them for the first time in the 1990 Northern Territory general election, won in a landslide by the incumbent government.

Wirthlin Worldwide[edit]

Textor was Australasian managing director, and one of the three founding Asia-Pacific team leaders, of Wirthlin Worldwide, a US$60+ million Textoret research firm, helping to establish offices in Singapore, Hong Kong, Canberra and Sydney. Textor was mentored by conservative Richard B. Wirthlin, who – as pollster and chief political strategist – masterminded two victorious presidential election campaigns taking Ronald Reagan to the White House.

During this time Textor was pollster and campaign strategist for Prime Minister John Howard in Australia, former New Zealand Prime Minister Jim Bolger in his 1996 victory and later, New Zealand Prime Minister Jenny Shipley. As part of the Wirthlin Group's Political Team he also assisted in directing polling in four US Senatorial, Congressional and Gubernatorial races in 1994.

Textor was also pollster and strategist for Fiji's SDL Party for its victories in the elections of 2001 (as Wirthlin) and 2006 (as Crosby|Textor).

The Howard years[edit]

Textor was the common thread in Howard's succession of election victories, serving as principal campaign pollster through three Chiefs of Staff to the PM and through four election victories.

A book by Pamela Williams about Howard's first election win in 1996, detailed Textor's election tracking and qualitative work.[2]

In 1998, the government won with marginal seats (swing seats) targeted by Mark Textor and Lynton Crosby in spite of the smallest two party preferred margin win since 1949 estimates, on 49.02 percent.

For the 2004 federal election campaign for John Howard, Textor was credited for the “who do you trust” campaign strategy refocusing key trust questions back on the then Opposition Leader's economic competence.


In 2002 Mark Textor, with Lynton Crosby, co-founded Crosby Textor, an international consulting firm with services that include market research, strategic communications and campaign execution both in political and corporate spheres.

Recent work[edit]

In 2008, Textor was a campaign strategist on the successful Boris Johnson London Mayoral campaign. With his partner Lynton Crosby he helped develop Johnsons 'donut strategy' that overcame the trend whereby conservative voters in outer boroughs opted out of mayoral elections because they could not identify with issues important with those in the centre of the city.[3]

In the 2010 Federal election campaign, Textor was the principal national pollster and chief external strategist for Tony Abbott and the Liberal Party. He wrote the catch cry quote: “We will stop the boats, stop the big new taxes, end the waste, and pay back the debt.”[4]

In 2012 he was strategist and pollster for Campbell Newman's Liberal National Party election campaign; one that delivered one of the biggest majority for any party in the history of Queensland politics.

In August 2012, Textor was pollster and strategist for the Country Liberal Party's win in the Northern Territory election, where they returned to power after 11 years in opposition.[5]

Textor directed polling and was a key strategic advisor on Boris Johnson’s victory in the 2012 London Mayor election. Textor was the principal pollster and external strategist for the Western Australian Liberal election victory March 2013.[6]

In June 2014 Textor's company conducted published polling which showed the strongest support for same-sex marriage ever recorded in Australia [7]

In 2014, Textor was principle pollster for the Victorian Liberal Party at the November state election, as well as for the Queensland LNP at the state election in January 2015. Both results saw a Coalition loss after only a single term in government - only the third change of government in Queensland since 1932.[8][9]

Commentary and evaluations[edit]

Business Review Weekly (BRW) included Textor in its list of Australia's 50 Most Influential People in Australian Business (2000). The Australian Financial Review (AFR) also named him as one of the 10 most powerful people in Australia in 2007. He was the youngest figure honoured in both the BRW and the AFR lists in 2000 and 2002. These publications recognised Mark's ability to delve deeper into the critical factors that drive consumer, investor and voter behaviour; and devise strategies and tactics to influence it.[10][11]

In 2012, Crikey's The Power Index described Mark as "the most domineering, divisive pollster this country's ever seen - and the most powerful... He's a genius at transforming raw research into compelling communication  —  someone who presses people’s emotional buttons, identifies points of division, and boils complex issues down to their core”.[12]

In November 2013 he attracted attention in Australian media for a series of controversial tweets directed at Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Marty Natalegawa, whom he likened to a 1970s Pilipino [sic] porn star, also questioning his ethics. Mr Textor, who has been described as one of the most influential people in Australia, has himself advocated the use of Twitter by prospective employers as a way of gauging a person's true character. Claiming have received death threats, he deleted the tweets and then the Twitter account. [1] [2]

Published work[edit]

In September 2012, 2013, and 2014 Textor has continued his work with Fairfax now writing for The Australian Financial Review.

Textor has written a regular opinion piece in the Sydney Morning Heralds Saturday edition. Articles cover a range of insights into his experience running political and issue-based campaigns and the lessons learned.

Sydney Morning Herald articles include:

  • No cuts should penetrate the nation's armour (26 May 2012)[13]
  • London takes a no-nonsense spin class with Boris (26 May 2012)[14]
  • Take life down a gear and quit the spin cycle (28 April 2012)[15]
  • Aim and fire: voting papers become a weapon (14 April 2012)[16]
  • Messages of substance made a pope – and a premier (31 March 2012)[17]
  • One tweet & a little bird can drop a bombshell (17 March 2012)[18]
  • The core values that unite voters can also divide them (3 December 2011)[19]
  • Too many voices drown out need for reform (3 December 2011)[20]
  • For whom the poll tells depends on what you ask (3 December 2011)[21]
  • New form of journalism must adhere to old rules (3 December 2011)[22]
  • There are no hang-ups in this hung parliament (3 December 2011)[23]
  • A confession – even the elites have their place (3 December 2011)[24]
  • Time for conservatives to do the right thing (3 December 2011)[25]
  • Who needs a CV when a tweet says much more (3 December 2011)[26]
  • For cyclists, a metre matters as much as life itself (3 December 2011)[27]
  • In uncertain times, certainty is a precious stone (3 December 2011)[28]
  • The people just want to be given the facts (3 December 2011)[29]

Amy Gillett Foundation[edit]

Mark Textor is the non-executive Chairman of the Amy Gillett Foundation, a DGR registered charity whose mission is to reduce the incidence of serious cycling related accidents and trauma in Australia, with a stated goal zero bike-related fatalities by 2020.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Mark, Textor. "Mark Textor – Crosby|Textor Group". 
  2. ^ Williams, Pamela (1997). The Victory: The Inside Story of the Takeover of Australia. Sydney: Allen & Unwin.ISBN 1864484055.
  3. ^ "Boris Johnson handwritten note to thank Crosby|Textor". 
  4. ^ Who's In Tony Abbott's inner circle
  5. ^ "Mark Textor on the campaign in NT". 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Poll shows growing support for same-sex marriage". 
  8. ^ Template:Http://
  9. ^ Template:Http://
  10. ^ "Crosby Textor Mark Textor Profile". 
  11. ^ "BRW". 
  12. ^ Knott, Matthew. Spinners and Advisers, no 4.. The Power Index, 21 February 2012.
  13. ^ Textor, Mark. No cuts should penetrate the nation's armour. The Sydney Morning Herald, 26 May 2012.
  14. ^ Textor, Mark. London takes a no-nonsense spin class with Boris. The Sydney Morning Herald, 12 May 2012.
  15. ^ Textor, Mark. Take life down a gear and quit the spin cycle. The Sydney Morning Herald, 28 April 2012.
  16. ^ Textor, Mark. Aim and fire: voting papers become a weapon. The Sydney Morning Herald, 14 April 2012.
  17. ^ Textor, Mark. Messages of substance made a pope – and a premier. The Sydney Morning Herald,31 March 2012.
  18. ^ Textor, Mark. One tweet & a little bird can drop a bombshell. The Sydney Morning Herald, 17 March 2012.
  19. ^ Textor, Mark. The core values that unite voters can also divide them. The Sydney Morning Herald, 3 March 2012.
  20. ^ Textor, Mark. Too many voices drown out need for reform. The Sydney Morning Herald, 18 February 2012.
  21. ^ Textor, Mark. For whom the poll tells depends on what you ask. The Sydney Morning Herald, 7 February 2012.
  22. ^ Textor, Mark. New form of journalism must adhere to old rules. The Sydney Morning Herald, 10 December 2011.
  23. ^ Textor, Mark. There are no hang-ups in this hung parliament. The Sydney Morning Herald, 26 November 2011.
  24. ^ Textor, Mark. A confession – even the elites have their place. The Sydney Morning Herald, 12 November 2011.
  25. ^ Textor, Mark. Time for conservatives to do the right thing. The Sydney Morning Herald, 29 October 2011.
  26. ^ Textor, Mark. Who needs a CV when a tweet says much more. The Sydney Morning Herald, 17 September 2011.
  27. ^ Textor, Mark. For cyclists, a metre matters as much as life itself. The Sydney Morning Herald, 3 September 2011.
  28. ^ Textor, Mark. In uncertain times, certainty is a precious stone. The Sydney Morning Herald, 20 August 2011.
  29. ^ Textor, Mark. The people just want to be given the facts. The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 August 2011.

External links[edit]