Postcards to Swing States F.A.Q.
If the following Frequently Asked Questions don’t answer your question, just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Why send postcards to voters?
Writing postcards to voters is a gateway to activism for hundreds of thousands of volunteers across the country. Postcards help grassroots groups recruit new members, build community, and win elections. Writing postcards is an especially great option for remote activism. They’re also fantastic for folks who have brief windows of time to help rather than blocks of a couple hours on weekends or evenings, when door-to-door canvassing shifts and phone banks are normally scheduled.
How do we know postcards work?
Our award-winning research proves that postcards increase Democratic turnout by 1.3%. In 2020, our postcard program added thousands of votes in states critical to President Biden’s victory. In the 2022 midterms, our postcards added 22,500 votes in key races across the nation. This impact is roughly equivalent to 45,000 hours of door-to-door canvassing!
Our five published randomized controlled experiments with handwritten postcards have won three Expy Awards from the Analyst Institute. We have tested 14 total handwritten messages, all but one of which found statistically significant increases in voter turnout. The enormous size of our programs allows us to test messages, timing and volume with a high degree of statistical confidence.
- See results from our 2022 Senate general election postcard experiment
- See results from our 2022 Neighborhood Letters general election experiment
- See results from our 2022 Pennsylvania primary postcard experiment (in partnership with messaging expert, Anat Shenker-Osorio)
- See results from our 2020 Wisconsin primary postcard experiment
- See results from our 2020 general election experiments
- See results from our 2018 Illinois primary election experiment
Who do we send postcards to?
At Progressive Turnout Project, our mission is to rally Democrats to vote. We send postcards to voters who are extremely likely to support Democratic candidates but might not vote without a nudge.
How do we pick where to send postcards?
Our volunteers have sent postcards to voters in 31 states since 2020 — everywhere from California to South Carolina. Electing Democrats and advocating for progressive policies are important at the federal, state, and local levels.
Our postcards rally Democrats to vote in state and federal elections where our programs are most likely to make the critical difference and help elect Democrats. That includes presidential swing states, competitive Senate races, key House races, and districts with competitive state legislative races.
What about stamps?
You are responsible for providing the stamps. Remember to buy Postcard Stamps, which are less expensive than Forever Stamps for letters. Postcard Stamps can be used to mail a postcard forever, regardless of the current price.
The easiest way to get stamps is online at USPS.com/store, but keep in mind it can take up to two weeks for them to deliver. You can also buy Postcard Stamps at your local post office. You can also use stamps with specific monetary values, as long as they add up to the right amount. Stamps go in the top right-hand corner on the blank side of the postcard.
How do I mail the postcards?
Mail them loose and unsorted rather than in rubber bands. Either drop them in a collection bin or at the post office.
Should we mail them from the destination states?
Please mail them from wherever you are. Postcards increase turnout regardless of where they’re mailed from, and most people don’t look at the postmark anyway!
How do postcards compare to canvassing, phone banking and letters?
Who are we?
Postcards to Swing States is a Progressive Turnout Project initiative. Our postcard program started in a volunteer’s garage in December 2019. In just three years, our volunteers in all 50 states, D.C. and U.S. territories have sent more than 41 million handwritten messages to voters, more than any other organization.
Progressive Turnout Project is the largest voter contact organization in the country, specifically dedicated to mobilizing the Democratic Party and defending democracy. Our mission: rally Democrats to vote.