Texts Much More Effective Than Robo-Calls

For now, texts are much more effective than robocalls, email
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 28, 2008 1:39 PM CDT
The text message announcing the choice of Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware as the vice presidential selection for the Democratic party is seen on a phone, Saturday, Aug. 23, 2008.    (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)
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(Newser) – The candidates’ automated call campaigns have received a lot of attention, but text-messaging, which only the Obama campaign uses, is likely to have a much more potent effect on the race, writes Farhad Manjoo for Slate. Studies have shown that personal appeals are more effective at mobilizing voters than mailers or robo-calls: Door-to-door visits by volunteers are the most effective.

“The beauty of text-messaging,” Manjoo writes, “is that it is both automated and personalized.” Texts are cheap, about $0.06 per message, and unlike spam-ridden email, voters are likely to actually read them. In one study, texts increased voter turnout by 3.1%. And Obama’s texts can be tailored to your ZIP code, so voters get state-specific reminders for registration deadlines and other important dates.