Electoral Commission

Ethnic communications, Our Work

2020 General Election education and motivation campaign


The brief

The Electoral Commission wanted to motivate and engage the 24% of New Zealanders who had said they were unsure or unlikely to vote in the election, as well as encouraging them to participate in the 2020 General Election. Targeted audiences were young Chinese and Indian people between 18 and 29. Messaging was neutral and not sway public opinion to one political party or specific issue.

You Matter – Chinese Community

Our main challenge was how to stick Chinese young people when creative adverts popped up and attracted them. We adopted Chinese traditional saying “One chopstick is easy to break; one bundle of chopsticks is very strong” for the key concept of Chinese creative collateral. The hands and chopsticks showed beautiful Chinese cultures and positive values behind – Every One of YOU Matters.

Chinese young audiences are online. Therefore, digital media channels played important roles in the media plan. Through Chinese news websites, mobile Apps, WeChat media, WeChat KOLs, video entertainments platforms, online TV and radio, our campaign won over 4,000,000 impressions in three weeks. Full-media format creatives, including digital creatives, social video, VO ads, PR stories, social media posts, and live interview, were used for interactive and engaging communications with potential young voters.

Lip Sync Social Media Campaign  – Indian Community

We teamed up with the celebrities from Seven Sharp’s Lockdown Lip Sync competition, Misfire Gang, a Kiwi Indian boy group,  and produced an entertainment video to promote voting among the Indian community. Immersed into Bollywood humour with a great mixture of cultures elements from NZ and India, we featured ‘Mitwa Re’, a well-known song from Indian film ‘Lagaan’. The lyrics of the song was asking each other to come along and act as we let go vote.

With regards to the communications strategy, we partnered with the largest NZ Hindi Radio station – Radio Tarana to promote voting knowledge and awareness. We also worked with other Indian news media outlets and individual influencers to share the video and social posts via their social media channels.

The results

The Electoral Commission’s post-election data, released on 30th November 2020, proved that youth turnout increased massively between the 2017 and the 2020 elections.

Official number of participates in the 2020 General Election:

  • Increase pre-enrolment to vote to 81.5%
  • Number of people total enrolled were 3.54 M (a growth of 7.6% in compare with 2017 result)
  • Number of people total voted were 2.89 M (a growth of 11.1% in compare with 2017 result)

In 2020, it was estimated that 60.9 per cent of the 18-24 age group voted, up from 50.1 per cent at the 2017 election. The numbers also increased for those aged between 25-29, from 54.1 per cent in 2017 to 62.6 per cent in 2020.

Here’s the statistic from the Kantar NZ research after the election asking whether people enrolled to vote:

“92% of Asian New Zealanders enrolled in the 2020 General Election, up from 87% in 2017.”

The Kantar NZ survey was compiled from a sample size of 1,038 people, with the Asian sample size totalling 155. Out of the 155 people, 92% had reported they enrolled in the election. The voting numbers for the same group were steady election on election at 79%.

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