Drawing from the research, low-tech postcards are a key part of the voter engagement mix, as not everyone picks up the phone or answers the door.

Research shows that postcards are an effective way to increase voter turnout and engagement when messages are personal, emphasize civic duty, and highlight the importance of making one’s voice heard.  Providing helpful messages about voting logistics, registration deadlines, and vote by mail details are also very effective. In fact, in Virginia, one study found that postcards increased turnout by 0.4 percent (a typical get-out-the-vote, or GOTV, canvass increases turnout by 0.3 percent) and concluded that the postcards had as good or better effect on voter turnout as going door to door.

While these increases may seem small, they are significant! Especially in tight races or elections with low voter turnout such as primaries or off-year elections, where the outcome can be decided by just a handful of votes.

Mail voting is a convenient, safe, and secure method of voting that is crucial for ensuring high turnout, especially among older Americans: it saves time, transportation, and Covid and other exposures, as well as allowing more time to consider the issues and candidates.

Learn more about Third Act’s Safeguarding our Democracy initiatives, including increasing participation in elections, senior to senior intergenerational voter registration, advocacy to ensure voting access, voter education, cultural engagement, and mutual aid.