Projet Montréal Election Campaign 2021
In 2017, Projet Montréal’s Valérie Plante was first elected Mayor of Montréal with goals of improving public transit and cycling networks, providing more efficient services and making housing and urban planning more family focused. In 2021, almost two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, Valérie Plante and Projet Montréal Councilors and Borough Mayors were running for re-election over former Montréal Mayor Denis Coderre and his Ensemble Montréal party. In the lead-up to the election, most opinion polls had Plante trailing behind Coderre, with many polls tightening as Election Day approached.
A key part of Projet Montréal’s campaign was a strong and sophisticated voter contact “ground game”. However, the pandemic was still limiting in-person contact and large gatherings and the sheer size of Montréal’s voting population (1,111,100 million) meant the campaign needed to develop an effective way to reach, engage and persuade voters while mobilizing supporters.
- Over 100,000 potential voters responded to IBVMs
- Nearly 200,000 text messages sent to and received from potential voters through Prompt.io
Stratcom and Projet Montréal developed an engagement program of sending successive rounds of Interactive Broadcast Voice Messages (IBVMs) that asked questions of those who answered the call live. The IBVMs, which went to upwards of 2 million MobileReach likely cell phones in the Montréal rate centre, asked questions on preferred language, support for and approval of Mayor Plante and priority issues facing Montréal. Based on the IBVM responses, some MobileReach records were then texted or phoned by Projet Montréal campaigners.
Stratcom also provided Projet Montréal with its main texting tool – Prompt.io – which was used to send broadcast texts and to facilitate peer-to-peer texting conversations with voters. Projet Montréal’s Prompt.io account was also set up for a Get Out The Vote text line whereby Montrealers could text in to find their local polling station.
Twice Stratcom used the IBVM disposition results to update which of the 6 million MobileReach cell phones are most likely to be active and at numerous points we identified cell phones from a list provided by Projet Montréal, all of which allowed their work to be even more efficient and accurate.
Stratcom’s services facilitated Projet Montréal’s engagement with potential voters, gathering important information on demographics, priority issues and voter intent. Through the IBVMs, over 100,000 Montrealers shared at least their language preference (66% French and 34% English) along with their stance on the Mayoral election. When asked about priority issues, 34% chose housing, followed by 24% on public safety and 20% for climate change. Through September, October and November 2021, Projet Montréal sent and received just under 200,000 text messages through Prompt.io.
On November 7, 2021 Valérie Plante was re-elected Mayor of Montréal and Projet Montréal retained majority control of Montréal City Council and many borough councils. Plante received 52% of the votes for Mayor to Coderre’s 37%.
“Stratcom services (texting and IBVM) played an integral part in our campaign. It enabled us to attain our outreach goals, notwithstanding the challenges of running a campaign during a pandemic. Texting and IBVM services turned out to be highly cost-effective ways to identify new supporters and I recommend these products!”Marie-Dominique Giguère, Director of Outreach
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