It's a lot harder to get out the vote during a pandemic
They say meet the voters where they are especially if they're your friends on the Internet from American public media, this is marketplace tech I'm molly would. It's a lot harder to get out the vote. During a pandemic political strategist and organizers are trying to buy new ways to reach voters and potential voters, research shows that usually in person interactions are the most effective technique, but now organizers are turning to an old idea. A turnout captain, a local volunteer who whips up voting interest, but combined with targeted data and sometimes APPs, and they're finding that that combination can really work marketplace's Kimberly Adams covers money and politics and did some reporting on this for us. Things like knocking on the doors of strangers to be in their face about a candidate does not work in a pandemic, and there seems to be a shift among sort of the political strategists and the get out the vote folks to really look at something that's called relational organizing, and I spoke with her thick Balasubramaniam. He's at Howard. University works a lot with data and with campaigns on this idea of relational organizing and. And here's how he explains it. Essentially you make a list of your family members, friends and neighbors, and because of research we know that the Messenger really really matters way more effective than TV digital or radio is when you hear a pitch straight from someone that you'd know and trust, and that makes these things a lot more effective according to the research. We've seen so far right. Do apps like this exist now? Sort of this APP called turnout nation. The founder Mark Mullen was telling me that with this APP. Basically, it doesn't necessarily push people to you, but you just say hey I want to get more people out to vote. Here are ten of my friends and family that I am committing to help them get registered and help them turn out to vote, and whereas a traditional campaign method of saying, knocking on the doors of strangers can boost turn out by like two percent. Their method boosted turn out by about thirteen percent. And why is that because it's more personal? Not just because it's more personal, but with turn out nation for example and a lot of the ways that this sort of get out the vote tech is being deployed for relational organizing much of it is not associated with a particular campaign. Most up vote efforts are run by candidate campaign specifically they tend to sort of be focused on a huge amount of stranger to stranger contact, and the last maybe month or three weeks before the election, but there are a lot of people. People who want to increase turnout and do other things to support American democracy year round and A. They don't necessarily want to do it in the service of this or that candidate and they only want to do it just before before Elections Right so folks like Mullen who work on this say that not only are volunteers more likely to get involved when you strip out the politics, but they also say that people respond better as well when you're just saying. Hey, you should vote. To Hey, you should vote for this particular candidate so obviously like this is a unique moment because of the pandemic, but it sounds like if it's that effective, and if you know, events may become less popular or good old fashioned door. Knocking becomes less popular at. The groundwork for a different type of digital campaigning in the future I think there's going to have to be a different type of digital campaigning. Now you can imagine some hesitancy by campaigns to us. Sort of this turnout captain model that that Molin is highlighting because they don't necessarily want everyone to turn out to vote. They want the people who were going to vote for their candidate to turn out to vote and the individual campaigns are scrambling because our entire campaign infrastructure is built on sort of these face to face interaction. A lot of that is just out the window.