After reading a blog post entitled “Vote as if ALL our lives depended on it” I was inspired to share the following 3 basic steps to help political actors engage young voters in South Africa:
- Set up a Social Media Communication Team who knows their way around mobile platforms, instant messaging, texting, tweeting and posting…recruitment criteria must include evidence of being a good networker.
- Incentivise! More than 77% of young people aged 18 – 25 are “pay as you go” cell phone users. Spot prizes or even competitions offering airtime will attract and hold this age groups attention. E.g. “Invite ‘selfies’ which include a message about why you are voting in this year’s election”
- Finally, don’t neglect your existing database. Every one of your e-mail contacts has access to a mobile phone. Engage those who already support you to offer steps 1 and 2 above to their network of contacts.
Young people are not hard to reach, they’re a generation waiting to be found, but to engage them you may need to learn txtspk 😉