How to Promote Your Contest to Voters
Why Promote in the First Place?
While we all wish it weren't the case, the truth is that the world will not beat a path to your door. If you want people to participate in your contest, you're going to need to get in front of them.
And with an online platform like RankedVote, that means you're going to need to send them links.
How to Get the Links to Share
There are two links you'll want to share with your voters. The "Vote Link" takes people to the voting ballot for your contest where they can cast their vote. The "Results Link" takes people to the Results page with its summary, visualization, and detailed results.
Get Links from the Details Page
Once you create a contest, decision, or election you'll land on the Details page. This is the same page you get to after clicking the "Details" button from the Dashboard page. At the top of this page is a summary section that says "Share these links with your voters" and has two buttons inside it.
Clicking the buttons will copy the link URL to your device's clipboard. You can then paste the URL wherever you'd like.
Get Links from the Share Page
The Share page is found from the Dashboard listing for each contest, decision, or election. You'll see the full URLs for the Vote and Results Links. You can highlight one to copy/paste or click the buttons to more easily copy directly to your device's clipboard.
Now that you've got the links, it's time to spread them far and wide! Here are some popular channels to use:
You can link to your contest on your website. Or, better yet, save your visitors a hop and embed your contest directly onto the page. This is a great way to creatively engage your visitors.
Feel free to include your contest as part of any regular broad email blasts. Give your readers something fun and tangible to do.
Depending on your current reach, social media like Twitter and even LinkedIn can be a great venue for sharing your contest. Just copy/paste the link in. RankedVote even provides a default image that helps your post to stand out (and saves you the time of digging up a photo).
As long as the device is connected to the internet, it'll be able to use RankedVote. Text Message, Group Chat, and WhatsApp all work. It's a great way to give specific people a push to participate in a channel you know they'll see.
QR Codes are a great way to allow people who are at a physical location to get to a specific URL without having to peck it in on their mobile device. Most phones now have a QR code scanner baked directly into their camera apps. This means you can put a QR code on a printout, sign, poster, or flyer to allow people to get to your contest.
The Mayor's Office in New York City used QR Codes at Bus Stops across the city to get thousands to practice ranked choice voting while waiting for their buses to arrive.
You can make your own QR codes by taking the Vote or Results Link and pasting it into:
- Canva's Free QR Code Generator
- Bitly's Free QR Code Generator
- Right-clicking in your browser and selecting "Create QR Code for this Page" (make sure that the link is for the "Vote Page")
Even when you only want certain people to participate, you still need to promote. Just maybe don't use Twitter 😀.
Internal email groups, lists, and newsletters can be a great source of participants. Link to your contest in the body text or in a call to action button (if that's available in the email's design).
Slack / Microsoft Teams
Open collaboration apps like Slack and Microsoft Teams can work great when you want participation from across your organization, but want to make sure only people within your organization could possibly see the link.