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Increase Voterturnout

Increase Voter Turnout: Effective Language

How to increase your voter turnout

There are several reasons why voters may not feel engaged in an election: the most serious is “It doesn’t change anything anyway!” A big message lies behind this small sentence. If you listen closely, at least part of the message means, “I can’t change anything.” This is where you can reach your voters because it is all about addressing voters in a motivating manner – it's all in your hands.   

Use Effective Language in your Election Campaign

Your election campaign is targeted at your voters, and ideally you should reach them as well. You want to activate your voters and motivate them to vote. In a fast-moving world, you need to draw the voters’ attention towards you. The first step is to establish effective language to address voters. How can you attract attention and actively address voters through your election notification when it arrives in your voters’ email inbox?

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Effectively Address Voters

Effective language consciously activates voters and sends out individual signals, in contrast to more traditional methods of addressing voters. When you send your voting information, do it according to the motto “the more concrete, the better”. Define certain topics in more detail and break down the information in line with different voter groups. When you send an email to your voters, an interesting subject line is the first step. 

The following office situations demonstrate how effective language can be utilised to more successfully engage your audience: 

The CEO of a company sends out an email to his team asking for new campaign ideas. 

  • Example 1: Dear team, looking for new ideas, we need your help!
    The CEO will surely get a few responses, but not from all colleagues. Some don't have time, others may think a team email is not important or simply cannot give input to the campaign. The team members aren't addressed individually, so it could therefore speak to every colleague in the company – or no one. It makes colleagues feel uncertain and doesn't activate them to participate. 

If the CEO sends out emails to different departments and links them to their respective team function, they will get more responses:

  • Example 2: Dear design team, do you have any visual input for our new campaign?
    In this example, a concrete group is addressed with a concrete request. Voter turnout in election campaigns can be increased significantly using this communication principle. Undecided voter groups in particular will receive a motivational push if they are addressed directly and will be more inclined to cast their vote. 

Effectively addressing voters starts with the form of address 

Initially addressing voters according to their role as voters will strongly activate them. Start your email with “Dear voter” and establish a connection between the addressee and their role as a voter. Similar to the team members in the example above, voters get the feeling “You’re voting and holding the reins. You’re part of the process.” 
Using the role of the addressee helps them to identify themselves as voters. This is exactly what helps to make voters use their right to vote and will therefore effectively increase your voter turnout. 

POLYAS-Tip: Make it as easy as possible for your voters by communicating online. Digital services help you to segment your various voter groups and address them individually without extra cost or effort. Inform your voters about the election process directly with just a few clicks and send important information online with ease once the election starts.

Contact our voting experts for specific tips for successful voter communication 

The Key for Success: Properly Addressing your Voters

Using effective language and directly addressing your voters actively involves them in the election process and emphasises the importance of participation in producing a meaningful election. You will give your voters the feeling: every vote counts! 

One condition is that you know your voters well enough. You should be able to differentiate between “voters” and “non-voters” and ideally segment them according to subgroups such as age, place of residence, interests or means of communication. Based on this data, you can start planning your election campaign and can give each voter group the necessary information using effective language.