I previously covered the Brunel study into how much campaigning is going on around the country, coming to the conclusion that it was “mediocre news for democracy, good news for the Lib Dems”.
Looking at more details of the poll (and thanks to the team for providing them), it’s striking by how widespread email campaigning is.
Of the people who said they were contacted by at least one campaign in February 2010, “mail” (probably including leaflets through the letterbox in the absence of a specific option for that) came out top:
92% received at least one item from Lib Dems, 89% from Conservatives and 81% from Labour
Second was email:
12% received at least one item from Lib Dems, 18% from Conservatives and 12% from Labour
Door knocking, meeting in the street and phone calls all came lower down.
It extends what I’ve written before about the importance of email as an online campaigning tool (and a largely unsung hero that has been around for quite a while now):
Email briefings, online submission of artwork, internal reference websites and more – most party organisations would stagger near collapse if the internet was turned off.
From this administrative perspective, 2010 won’t be the first internet election; it’ll be the third internet election.
Another recent survey confirms the picture from the Brunel survey of the Liberal Democrats doing well in volume of campaigning compared to the other parties, particularly when you consider the smaller number of seats the party is fighting seriously to win:
The main parties will try to contact millions of voters duringthis year’s election – by leaflets, phone calls and personalvisits to their homes. Have you personally been contactedby any of the parties in any of these ways during the pasttwo or three weeks? Please tick all that apply:
By Conservatives: 18%
By Labour: 16%
By Liberal Democrats: 14%
By some other party: 3%
By none of them: 60%
Source: YouGov 1-2 April