At Upland Mobile Messaging, we’re always interested in seeing the successful strategies that help elevate our customers’ SMS campaigns. We’ve developed a pretty good set of best practices over the years – but sometimes, a customer sees such off-the-charts success, that we want to explore what happened so we can learn new tactics.
That’s exactly what happened at the end of last year, when Voto Latino’s mobile list jumped from 25,000 people to 95,000 people over the course of October. That’s a gain of 280% in a single month.
We spoke to Avery Lord, communications and data analyst at Voto Latino, to get her thoughts about how they did it. Here are some of the key takeaways:
The presidential election brought in a tide of new voters
Much of Voto Latino’s list increase was the result of the presidential election. Voto Latino organized an extensive voter registration campaign, which joined grassroots outreach with digital tools, social media, and SMS messaging. Especially in the last few months of a divisive election, that push brought many new subscribers into the fold.
It’s a good reminder that a lot of list growth is simply based around external factors. It’s important to have your mobile campaigns (and your social and digital campaigns) up-and-running when those outside forces hit.
A change in mobile forms brought thousands of new registrants
Voto Latino found that their registration push was helped by a change in some of their online registration forms. While previously those forms had only required email addresses, the new forms gave voters the choice between opting in with email or SMS. Featuring mobile fields more prominently sparked a dramatic uptick in SMS subscribers.
For example, TurboVote, one of the voter registration platforms that feeds into Voto Latino’s system, changed their interface to allow for SMS registration. Out of the tens of thousands of voter registrations received through TurboVote, 1/3 of them provided their mobile number.
The extra advantage with changing your online forms is not just a bigger SMS list – but also that you’re reaching your constituents on the platform where they want to be contacted.
More Subscribers Means a Bigger Impact
This may be obvious, but the tremendous growth in Voto Latino’s mobile list meant that the organization’s outreach could have a much bigger impact.
In particular, Voto Latino made use of Upland Mobile Messaging’s polling place locator, which connects voters with the address of their proper polling place.
“Due to the supporter increase (and additional outreach we did), we were able to give over 200,000 polling locations in 2016,” said Lord. That’s 200,000 voters who knew where to show up on election day.
The organization also experimented with call-in campaigns and saw increased engagement from their newly-supercharged list. That’s going to be particularly important under the new administration, where rallying congressional action could be vital to Voto Latino’s agenda.
To learn more about Voto Latino and sign up for their SMS campaign, visit them here.