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2023

Vote.org

  • Dispatched 10.2 million voter mobilization emails after correcting a massive deliverablity crisis
  • Launched off-year fundraising program that raised $725K with an average donation of $10.10
Vote.org

Authentic turns Vote.org’s email deliverability crisis into a success, helps 10+ million Americans vote in 2022 election

Introduction: 

Vote.org is a pivotal force in amplifying democratic participation, dedicated to increasing voter turnout and enhancing the accessibility of the democratic process. As a leading nonprofit, it harnesses the power of technology to remove barriers to voting, providing innovative, user-friendly digital tools that make voter registration, education, and participation seamless for millions nationwide.

The organization stands as a movement that transcends political affiliations, fueled by the conviction that every voice should be heard for a thriving democracy. Vote.org’s robust digital platform serves as an invaluable resource, offering tools and insights that empower and mobilize individuals to exercise their voting rights with confidence, ensuring that each election reflects the collective voice of the American populace.

Challenge: 

In the pivotal moments leading up to the 2022 election, Vote.org faced a severe email deliverability crisis that threatened to halt its email program in its tracks. Well over 50% of the organization’s email were going to spam inboxes, thus weakened Vote.org’s ability to communicate with donors and engaged voters. The group’s CRM was on the brink of suspending their email program due to this crisis. 

This predicament emerged at a time when effective communication was paramount, with millions of voters relying on Vote.org for essential information and guidance and Vote.org relying on grassroots contributions to fuel their work. The risk of being muted during this critical period posed not only an operational challenge but also threatened to undermine the organization’s core mission of fostering enhanced voter participation.

The deliverability issues were multifaceted, rooted in technical complications that required urgent and expert intervention. Vote.org was hampered by blocklists and needed to overhaul its deliverability practices swiftly to ensure continuity in reaching voters. Moreover, the organization recognized the necessity for a comprehensive review and enhancement of its voter mobilization and fundraising strategies. These challenges, particularly the immediate threat of email program suspension, demanded swift, strategic actions to avert significant disruptions to voter engagement and donation efforts.

Strategy: 

Authentic jumped in, immediately addressing the deliverability issues with a thorough audit followed by overhauling the organization’s best practices and collaborating with inbox providers to lift Vote.org from blocklists. With the immediate crisis averted, our focus shifted to enhancing both the voter mobilization and fundraising email programs.

We transformed the GOTV calendar, aligning it with vital voting deadlines and restructuring emails to be concise and clear, ensuring voters received critical information when they needed it most. Furthermore, recognizing the gaps in communication during non-election periods, we introduced a strategy to engage voters quarterly with surveys, reminders, and alerts to maintain connection and relevance.

On the fundraising front, in a quieter political year, we meticulously tested various tactics, optimizations, and messaging themes. This iterative approach enabled us to pinpoint strategies that consistently drove donations, regardless of the distance to the next Election Day.

Tactics: 

For voter mobilization, we moved beyond the rigid election reminder calendar, introducing flexibility to align with key voting deadlines. Emails were redesigned to be straightforward and informative, leading to increased click rates. We initiated a process of quarterly engagement, incorporating surveys and evergreen reminders to keep voters informed and connected throughout the year.

In fundraising, a rigorous testing approach was adopted. We explored diverse fundraising tactics and messaging themes, identifying and implementing those that resonated most with donors. This adaptability allowed us to navigate and succeed in a challenging fundraising landscape, marked by a lack of big elections or headline-dominating voting rights issues.

Outcome:

Authentic’s intervention not only saved Vote.org from imminent deliverability issues but also significantly enhanced its voter mobilization and fundraising initiatives. Over 10.2 million voter mobilization emails were dispatched from January to October 2023. Despite the off-year, we raised over $725,000 online in under a year and achieved over $54,000 in a single week ahead of the GA Runoff. The most common donation amounted to $10.10.

We turned a program on the verge of shutdown into a robust mechanism for voter engagement and fundraising. The revitalized email strategies ensured voters received essential information, enhancing their participation, while the fundraising tactics identified and applied ensured consistent financial support in a challenging environment. The collaboration between Vote.org and Authentic exemplified a turnaround story, highlighting our capability to not just resolve crises but to innovate and optimize for continued success.

Examples:

Email Example #1 

Email Example #2

Email Example #3

Email Example #4

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