Increase Voter Turnout: 5 Ways That Encourage Voting Participation

These five tips can help you increase voter engagement and turnout in your elections:

1. Address Voters Personally

Motivation is the key to increasing voter turnout in membership polls, student elections, executive officer elections, board member elections, and other types of political or social elections. To motivate voters to participate in an election, you must strengthen their feeling of being part of a social community and their ability to bring meaningful change through voter participation. You can boost motivation by using personalized language. 

Your election campaigns must address individual voters by considering their personal situations–you want to energize your voters as effectively as possible to encourage them to vote. An effective way to do this is by categorizing voters based on their behaviors and creating messages relevant to their personal and social situations. For example, being addressed personally in emails and letters can substantially increase voter turnout at an election.

2. Effectively Attract Voters

Targeting your election campaigns to your voters can help you reach them and increase turnout. To do this, you must use effective language in your election campaigns. Effective language consciously energizes voters by sending individual signals, unlike traditional social media or marketing methods. For instance, when you send your voter communication, ensure certain election topics are detailed and break down the message to align with different voter groups.

3. Thank Your Voters

Increased voter turnout is crucial in every institution because it legitimizes the actions of elected leaders. Encouraging voters to vote doesn’t require substantial motivational campaigns that only lead to extensive organizational expenses; instead, appreciating voters can go a long way in improving voter participation. You can appreciate voters easily with a few thank you letters and notes, which will significantly impact voter turnout.

Be sure to show appreciation for your voters for their participation in the last election as the upcoming election nears. Briefly summarize the effect of the previous election and what goals were achieved because of voter participation, and inform your voters that there is a new opportunity to improve your institution. These two statements can help you activate voters, regardless of whether they voted in the last election. ElectionBuddy's online ballot systems will help you pick multiple winners, even if a voter voted for only one candidate in a multiple-vacancy election. 

4. Activate Young Voters

In today’s digital age, considering the needs of young voters can help you increase participation in the election. Young generations live more digitally than older generations–they shop online, communicate digitally, use social media, and use online banking. A generation that uses the internet extensively in its daily life can only effectively be reached online. 

Surveys continuously show that online voting can improve voter turnout, especially among young people. Moreover, while legal and data security doubts are common, high-quality security standards can allow you to hold legally valid and safe online elections. At ElectionBuddy, our online voting systems can help you conduct valid and safe online elections.

5. Send Voting Reminders

Sending voting reminders in your elections can increase voter participation–people like being reminded because it offers a sense of appreciation and inclusivity. Sending a message to show voters their vote matters and is needed can help you create a feeling of belonging and responsibility among your voting community. When voters are personally called to cast their votes, they’re much more likely to respond and improve voter turnout.

Why Is it Important to Drive Higher Voter Engagement at Elections?

Voting is an opportunity for each individual, club member, or resident within an association to have their say. Low voter participation inevitably means that a proportion of your voting population will be dissatisfied with the outcome - even if they choose not to vote!

Boosting engagement is hugely important, showing each person how to make their voice heard on political or social issues and offering your voting community the right tools to get involved and see the tangible impact of their voting power.

You can use a range of marketing techniques to publicize the importance of the vote, engage on social media to connect with younger voting audiences, or invite questions, so the voting system is clear for the online election.

What Is the Best System to Increase Voter Turnout at Elections?

We've shared some great tips to help you increase voter turnout, but the trick is to try and unpick those factors that cause low voter turnout.

For example:

  • Do your voting members know when, where, and how to cast their votes?
  • Is it easy to find details of each electoral candidate, their values, and their manifesto?
  • Are you aware that voter's access to transport to a physical voting station might be an issue?
  • How can voters take part if they aren't local or are busy at work on the day of the election?
  • Is election voter participation typically lower during holiday seasons or at specific times of the year?
  • Is same-day voter registration available for people who forget to register?

There are tons of reasons voter turnout might not be as high as you'd like, but if you can address these barriers, you'll improve your election success.

How Can Organizations Streamline Electoral Processes to Increase Voter Participation?

People are far more likely to vote if they have all the information they need about getting a ballot paper, registering online, reviewing the candidates, or watching live announcements on social media (which makes an election more exciting and credible!).

Examples might include showing live vote tallies, sharing stats about how many voters are taking part, or making results available immediately on the web to encourage voter turnout.

Early election results indicators encourage people to take action, especially if their preferred candidates aren't in the running (yet!).

Linking the outcome of your vote directly to those decision-makers who perhaps don't always participate in voting demonstrates the value their vote holds and is a fantastic way to aim for a higher voter turnout at the next election.

Does Online Voter Registration Make Elections More Accessible to People?

Online voter registration is an excellent way to avoid common problems that negatively impact voter turnout.

Whether your elections are political or related to local club representation or selecting a team captain, a digital voting app or email invitation can raise engagement by several percent.

Why? Because busy voters might simply forget to turn up and vote, not have time to collect a ballot, or lose interest in the election if they have to search for a voting station.

Making voting easy, fun, and inclusive makes an election work for the voters and can increase voter turnout considerably.

Adding a voter registration process to your site or social feeds or sending invites via email means everybody is well-informed and can take part at their convenience.


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