In November 2020, Mauree Turner made history by becoming the first publicly non-binary elected official in the US and the first Muslim member of the Oklahoma Legislature. The success of Turner’s campaign can be attributed to support from people who often do not see themselves represented in politics. Many were eager to volunteer for this historic campaign, and the campaign's grassroots organizers skillfully gathered this support while adapting their campaigning strategy amid a global pandemic.
On Election Day, Turner won their primary by 250 votes, the same number of support IDs the campaign secured using Impactive.
Turner’s campaign was composed of grassroots organizers without digital experience; they had planned to connect to their community by knocking on doors and holding in-person events. But the explosion of COVID-19 and the subsequent need to stay at home uprooted their plans, and they needed to swiftly create a new campaign strategy.
As a result, Mauree Turner’s campaign leveraged Impactive's digital organizing tools to effectively engage with voters at home and gather support without needing to canvass in person. In fact, Turner’s campaign was the only one of its scale in Oklahoma that did not knock on doors due to COVID-19.
Two of Impactive’s digital organizing solutions played key roles in Turner’s campaign strategy: Peer-to-Peer Texting and Friends and Family Messaging.
Turner’s campaign held virtual texting banks during which volunteers sent peer-to-peer and friend-to-friend texts through Impactive. The organizing team easily prepared message scripts for both types of outreach, which allowed volunteers to open the app and send messages to contacts in minutes.
Friend-to-friend outreach was a popular approach with volunteers for Turner's campaign. Since Impactive automatically syncs users' personal contacts to the app (once granted permission), volunteers could easily send text and email messages to those they know best from the app. In the end, relational organizing played a large role in Turner's victory — friend-to-friend texting had a 50% adoption rate!
All these efforts allowed the campaign to maximize the contributions from volunteers from across the country. Through Impactive, Turner’s campaign spoke to 10,804 people and sent 27,790 text messages.
Thanks to the support of Turner’s volunteers and the power of peer-to-peer texting and relational organizing, Turner led a highly successful grassroots organizing campaign and eventually secured 71% of the votes in their general election.
Mauree Turner continues to serve as Oklahoma State Representative and remains a valued partner of Impactive for constituent management.
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