Docmail helps increase votes by 25% in the local elections, for Central Meon Valley, Winchester. May 2022.
As the 2022 May elections fast approached, those running for their local area sought new ways of engaging with residents in order to canvas voters. From email, social media, postal documents and door to door campaigns, a wide range of communication methods were planned to be utilized and rolled out across different political parties and areas.
One such party that were looking for new and different ways of engaging voters was the Green Party of Central Meon Valley. With hard-to-reach voters, accounting for 10% of addresses (roughly 350) down narrow roads, along busy roads and in locations that were difficult to get to, the party required an alternative means of driving engagement and their chosen method was postal communications.
The challenge of managing this aspect of their canvas was tasked to Murray Mahon.
Murray’s role within the local Green Party is to manage the voter data base, extracted from the elector register, so that it can be used as a canvassing tool. Murray works on the output and management of the data that helps plan their campaign to win votes from the 7,500 people who live within the 3,500 addresses in the area.
During the local May elections 2022 the Green Party candidate for this particular territory was Malcom Wallace, who was hoping to win the council seat in the local election. In order to do so, the party looked at how they could influence more vote.
The party identified that the real value was in targeting regular voters and encouraging them to vote for Malcom. With each vote crucial to the result it was key that everyone in the area cast their votes, including those who are difficult to canvass.
The challenge being to secure an uplift on the 30% of votes they won in the previous local election in 2021.
The party was aiming to win votes with a combination of messages, personality of the MP and the thoroughness of their canvassing.
Previously, the party had relied solely on volunteers to hand-deliver general letters (that weren’t personalised to the recipient) to get their messaging seen, which made it especially difficult to target those who lived in non-easily accessible places.
As a result of this, the party planned to send around 350 letters to these addresses through an outsourced company, in which Murray would be responsible for their delivery.
The party was also on a very tight time-scale, which was only exasperated further by a delay in April caused by a double bank-holiday. They needed to find a solution that could be implemented instantly and would deliver their communications fast.
A member of the campaign team suggested that they considered Docmail as a solution to do so, and Murray was asked to explore this. There were initial concerns that it would not be cost efficient, but after some research, Murray established that it could serve their needs instantly; Docmail offered a cost-effective solution that cost less than the price of a stamp and produced output quickly. Due to this, Murray decided to proceed with using Docmail to send their mailing.
Murray signed up to Docmail for free and was approached by Customer Relationship Manager, Michelle Marsh. After explaining his requirements, the two of them booked in a call where Michelle talked Murray though the process of setting up his letter and spreadsheet. They then arranged a full training session via Microsoft Teams.
Murray says that the sessions made him feel he was able to seamlessly load what was required to carry out the mailing and felt confident that they’d be able to achieve their goals with the solution (Docmail).
Docmail’s mailing system works by allowing the user to first upload the document they’d like to send, and then a spreadsheet or CSV file of the addresses it’s going to. The system will then pull through any personalised information required on the letter (such as having the first name after ‘hello’), and pop the address on the letter too. The letters are then printed in our secure facility, enclosed and posted.
After the training call Murray spoke to his data specialist within the party who set up the CSV file with the addresses on for the data merge, while Murray prepared the tools and platform for the mailing.
Excellent customer support - Throughout the process, Murray felt constantly supported by Michelle and had faith in our speed of response.
A 25% increase in votes - The party saw an outstanding success to their efforts, winning 55% of the votes, which was up 25% from the previous year. Murray believed that Docmail contributed to a percentage of this incredible win.
Improved engagement through personalisation - Docmail enabled the party to personalise their letters through the use of the mail merge, which meant that each letter was addressed to the recipient. In previous studies carried out by Royal Mail, it has shown that this has proven to encourage recipients to open the letters and absorb its content.
Cost efficient - All efforts to encourage votes are funded by the Green Party themselves, so cost mattered. They had no budget and had not done something like this before, so it was a big leap. But Murray found that Docmail was competitive on pricing and perfectly reasonable against the standard cost of sending a letter.
Environmentally friendly - For the Green Party, being eco-friendly is extremely important. Outsourcing to a company who offered environmentally friendly solutions was a must, and Docmail was able to offer this with the use of FSC approved paper, vegetable inks and waste-hierarchy within the factory.
Instant implementation - A time sensitive solution was a must for the party and they found that Docmail was extremely beneficial for this because of its instant implementation. The fact that it was also a seamless system meant that this only further sped up the process.
Improved response rate - The party also found that as soon as the mailing was sent they had instant responses, which was incredible because they don’t always get responses that quickly.
Saved time - However, the number one benefit that Murray identified was that it was the perfect solution in reaching the addresses that they couldn’t get to. Docmail eliminated all of the time consuming and dangerous scenarios that could potentially occur with their old processes, and enabled the party to reach every single person within the constituency in a fast, cost-effective, safe and reliable way.
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