Today, the town of Markham launches a social media awareness campaign, designed and implemented by Delvinia, to inform Markham residents about the upcoming municipal election on October 25, 2010. “Do it Yourself Markham”, orDIY Markham ) is a social media campaign being implemented through Twitter and Facebook designed to increase awareness about the importance of municipal services as part of the overall “Your Vote Counts” campaign for the election.
The Do It Yourself Markham or DIY Markham social media campaign is at the centre of an overall voter outreach program that includes direct mail flyers, registration cards, print ads and billboards. A technological leader and highly innovative municipality, Markham has been offering Internet Voting to residents since 2003, and experienced a 48% growth in online voting and an increase in overall voter turnout during the 2006 election. This will be the third consecutive election that Delvinia will be working with Markham on the voter outreach program focused on creating awareness about the upcoming election and the option of Internet Voting is a convenient way to cast their ballot.
“For the past two elections we used the Markham election website as the primary destination to inform and educate voters.” “This year, given the growth and adoption of social media, educating voters within the social networks and communities where they interact is at the centre of our awareness plan.”
The objective of the DIY Markham campaign is to use the power of social media to increase awareness of the importance of voting in a municipal election. The humourous and easy-to-share videos describe a world where you are responsible for your own municipal services – such as garbage removal and water treatment – and how in the end, the easiest way to address these issues is to vote. The first two videos being released today depict Parks & Recreation and Fire Services in a “tongue-in-cheek” scenario of what a “Do It Yourself” version of these services might look like. Additional videos, including humourous depictions of garbage collection and water services will be released over the next three weeks. The intent is for people to share the videos with their communities, spreading the word on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook.
“DIY Markham is there to make people stop and think about what they would do if they were responsible for their own municipal services,” says Froman. “Municipal government is very important in all of our lives and with the convenience of Internet Voting, Markham residents have all they need to ensure they take the time to get out and vote.”
Delvinia is also committed to continuing its research into understanding the impact of Internet Voting during a binding election and will expand on its research and reports completed after the last two elections and published on www.delvinia.com/egov. Delvinia will partner with university researchers to expand the attitudinal research they have conducted in the past two elections.