Young Americans may appear indifferent to voting, but they are paying close attention to political affairs. Accordingly to Pew Research Center, millennial voters will be the largest block in 2018. Pew reported 34 million millennial votes in 2016, nearly double the number they cast in 2008.
Even though the tech generation grew up around computers and have taken social media in droves when it comes to politics, social media often goes ignored, and emails hit the spam filter.
So, the same old question remains: ”how can you reach them?”
If you are a politician who needs to raise funds for your campaign or gain voters’ support in the election, direct mail is a must-have communication component in your multi-channel campaigns and an excellent launching tool to your digital arena.
According to a study conducted by USPS and American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC), millennials read, discuss and use political mail at a higher rate than other age groups. Also, many millennials check their mailbox daily and immediately open their mail. No wonder why Politico reported that during the 2014 election cycle, politicians spent nearly $150 million sending out direct mail. It works!
Millennials are a huge part of our future, so take time to invest in the education of your voter base for the next 50 years or so.
With this goal in mind, we’ve put together some tips for connecting with your the largest voters’ group.
1. Connect with your audience
How can you connect with millennials? Provide a clear and structured message: goals should be very clear, meetings must have agendas and minutes, and information has to be well organized. These folks grew up with a lot of structure. Choose dialogue, instead of dictating. They have ideas and opinions and were raised by the best listening, the most child-centered group of parents in history. More than other generations, they enjoy their lives, workplaces, and families. Rely on their positive social connections.
2. Study Surveys and Research
Study polling and group focus research about your target audience conducted by various independent organizations and political institutions. These studies are focused on different age-groups’ attitudes and behaviors towards political matters and the results are published for the general public. These studies will help you to tailor your message according to your intended audience background, lifestyle and preferences.
3. Redirect traffic to your website
Millennials check everything online. They approach mail cautiously but use it as an opportunity to learn more. So, give them a clear source for checking information online. Direct mail opens great opportunities for microtargeting by age, income, interests, and lifestyle. Then, redirect the audience to digital marketing through websites, social media, retargeting and display advertising. Integrated communications increase chances for name recognition and for efficient messaging when consistently repeated.
4. Be consistent
In order to have name recognition among voters, you need to be consistent with using the same colors, same font, same message and logo in all your printed materials, in your website, TV ads, mails and everything else your campaign does.
5. Avoid boredom
Be creative, but not too crazy. Stick to simple messages, uncomplicated design and limited text on high contrast colors. Avoid posed and staged photos. Use candid and sincere photography. Integrating your campaign visually will allow your younger voters to easily identify you on the voting ballots. Don’t forget to use attention-grabbing techniques and humor. Millennials don’t take things too seriously.
6. Say it loud
Some millennials will not care about your political mail at all…so make sure that your message will be at least seen. Assure that your name, your logo, and message are clear and loud, by printing them on large materials. Use simple words, in plain English, and free of typos.
To sum it up, the difference between “would read” and “would throw away” lies in the details. If you want to gain the support of the largest voter group, you must customize your message to their background, lifestyle and preferences. Some key takeaways: understand your audience, by reading behavioral generation studies, integrate traditional marketing tools that reach your target audience and then redirect traffic to your digital presence. Be consistent, use humor and stick to simplicity. Millennials are our future decision makers. Treat them respectfully.