As I’ve said before, I’m a recent convert to believing that texting is an insanely effective way to communicate with voters… like shockingly effective. We just found out firsthand that it works really well in other countries too.
Do you know what else works? Try saying “Rise up lights” out loud. Trust me, do it…. after you do it, proceed to the text below this fancy graphic.
Did you do it? It sounds like you’re saying “razor blades” with an Australian accent. You’re welcome.
Anywho, we had some fun working with some great folks in Australia in their recent federal election. A little background before I tell you how VoterTrove rode in on a white horse on top of the Pacific ocean and single-handedly carried our clients to victory (well, I would tell you that if it were true, actually, I flew coach on Qantas, and helped them send some targeted text messages).
Okay, the background. If you haven’t heard, it was a pretty stunning result. Nobody gave the Liberals a chance. They dumped their Prime Minister nine months before the election, giving their new PM Scott Morrison less than a year to put together a campaign.
The Liberal Party in Australia is the center-right party, by the way, I know, counterintuitive for us. I dunno though, their seasons are opposite, hurricanes rotate in the opposite direction, they ride in the front seat of Ubers… so in this context, maybe it makes perfect sense?
Actually, Australia is not much different than the U.S. (except of course for all the animals and insects that are capable of ending your life). Well, maybe the politics aren’t much different. Their 2019 election was basically our 2016 election. Polls were wrong, the media was in the tank for the left, and blue-collar workers believed the economy was leaving them behind and that nobody was listening to them.
With this backdrop, the Liberals won the election by flipping seats in areas that were heavily dependent on jobs in natural resources. The left made climate change a big issue, and well, people thought it was going to cost them their job.
What did we do? In addition to working with a few Senate campaigns, we helped a large trade association engage with these folks via text messaging. The response we were seeing was overwhelming actually, and the two electorates where we were most active turned out to be key pickups for the Liberals.
Text messages resonate with voters because they feel personal, and they are, especially when the message is in support of something that really matters (like their job).
We may have been late to the party on texting, but you don’t have to be. Let me know how we can help, maybe I will fly coach to see you too.
I’ll leave you with a few fun facts about Australian elections:
- Voting is COMPULSORY, meaning you have to do it or you are fined.
- Democracy Sausages are a thing. At most polling places, you’ll find groups grilling up sausage, to raise money for their cause. Oh, those irreverent Aussies… love it!
- The image below is also a thing. I’ll never forget driving into Melbourne (in the front seat of an Uber) and seeing a HUGE billboard of this dude (Clive Palmer), with that slogan… I think I mouthed.. Da fu*k is that? The scraggly, surly, unabomber looking gentlemen flipping the bird is not yours truly btw.