Post image

Before The Votes Are Counted: Election Day Management

By the time polling day has come around, all of your hard work campaigning and canvassing is complete.

You're unlikely to win major votes canvassing today, and canvassing is even legally restricted on polling day in many jurisdictions. Today is 100% about maximizing the turnout of your voters.

Whether your voters are traditionally more or less likely to vote than your oppositions, you can gain an advantage by bucking the trend, and providing a boost to your overall vote tally.

For candidates from smaller electoral backgrounds, this can be the boost that allows you to compete with larger, more established candidates; while for more established candidates, this can help assist ensure that you opposition cannot catch up.

1. Polling Day Target Audience

This will depend on the level of data available to you – regardless of the answer, there are still ways and means of directing your polling day operation. If your campaigners and canvassers have been querying people on the door as to their voting intention and keeping appropriate records, this will be your GOTV list, otherwise, simply target your heartlands en masse.

2. Your Polling Day Team

Like most aspects of the campaign so far, your polling day operation will be dependent on staff both staff in the field gathering information, and staff back at HQ processing this.

3. Transportation

You will find that some of your likely voters encounter complications in getting to their polling station. In the weeks prior to the election, if resources allow it, make arrangements to put yourself in a position to provide transportation assistance to these voters on the day. Depending on the scale of your campaign, and resources available, this could vary from a small number of volunteers with cars to minibuses, or even a regular bus service for the day!

4. Polling Station Recon

Depending on your jurisdiction, as a candidate, you will have different information available to you at your polling station. This may vary from current turnout, to specifically who has and has not voted so far. Check in periodically, and adjust your Polling Day Target Audience as appropriate.

5. Getting-out-the-Vote

Using the information available to your from the above steps, reach out to your voters! What works will vary from the campaign location, demographics, and information available to you; but start getting in contact, whether it be knocking on doors, sending texts, calls, or emails.

6. Make it easy to vote!

In contacting your voters, you should not only be encouraging them to get out and vote; but making it as easy as possible for them. Have your team: ask people, 'have you voted yet?'
if they have not, be sure to advise them as to the correct polling station
query if they require transportation assistance to get to the polling station

7. Close of Polls

At the close of polls, particularly in the event of a count not beginning until the next day, you may wish to put your campaign team back to work. If you are required to remove lawn signs or posters, or have any other obligations to wrap up you campaign, the hours between the close of polls and start of the count can be key hours of high productivity. You don't want to be organizing this over the next few weeks, regardless of how the count goes!

8. Take Care of your Team

Your team has put in long hours of primarily voluntary work over the past number of weeks and months. Make sure they're well fed, rewarded and thanked for their efforts – it's the proper thing to do...and will stand to you in the next campaign.

Back to Top