COOK & SCHMID IN THE NEWS
SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY REGISTRAR OF VOTERS CAMPAIGN NETS INCREASE IN VOTE-BY-MAIL REGISTRATIONS
January 12, 2009
SAN DIEGO, CALIF.—A recent voter education and outreach campaign in San Bernardino County increased the number of registered voters in the county by 10 percent. In addition, nearly 40,000 new voters chose permanent vote-by-mail status. The “Vote By Mail. Voting Made EASY” campaign was conducted by Cook & Schmid, a San Diego-based PR, advertising and marketing firm, for the San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters.
The four-month long campaign was part of San Bernardino County’s compliance with requirements of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA), passed by Congress in 2002.
“A substantial amount of secondary research supported the idea that there was skepticism associated with voting by mail,” mentioned Jon Schmid, Partner at Cook & Schmid. “We focused our execution on educating voters about the benefits, ease and security associated with voting by mail.”
Cook & Schmid conducted a broad and concerted outreach effort which engaged several thousand individuals who were heads of community groups, faith-based organizations and political action committees to encourage them to become advocates of the vote-by-mail option.
Traditional media relations tactics such as bylined articles and radio interviews helped to advance the message as well as an advertising campaign complete with transit advertising, print, in-theater and radio PSAs.
Campaign results included the following:
- Registered voters increased by 10 percent countywide
- 80 percent of those who received vote-by-mail ballots and were registered to vote by mail actually voted as opposed to only 47 percent of registered polling-place voters
- Permanent vote-by-mail registration increased by over 38,000 individuals
- Vote-by-mail registration increased by 4.6 percent over prior-election registration figures
- Vote-by-mail participation resulted in a significant savings to the County in polling-place staffing and set up costs for the November 2008 election
ABOUT COOK & SCHMID
Cook & Schmid is afull-service public relations, advertising and marketingagency. Our strategic marketing communications and public participation programs enable clients to realize business goals, manage their reputations with key audiences, and achieve consensus on divisive issues. Cook & Schmid’s approach teams seasoned public relations practitioners and former journalists with subject matter experts in diverse fields, including economic development, biotechnology, public infrastructure and the environment. Headquartered in San Diego, California, Cook & Schmid serves clients across the country. The firm is certified as a Minority Business Enterprise by the National Minority Supplier Development Council and the California Public Utilities Commission. Cook & Schmid is also registered as a Small Disadvantaged Business by the Small Business Administration. .