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How companies are encouraging millennials to vote

According to Pew Research Center, “Generation X, Millennials and the post-Millennial generation make up a clear majority of voting-eligible adults in the United States, but if past midterm election turnout patterns hold true, they are unlikely to cast the majority of votes this November.”

However, this is the generation of people accustomed most to technology– whose jobs, social lives and daily habits depend on the same apps that are promoting voting in 2018.

Snapchat allowed users to vote in the app. With less than one fifth of young voters turning out for the last election, Snapchat is one of many companies encouraging millennials to use their voice by allowing them to register right in the app. Snapchat has more than 100 million users, 80 percent of which are of voting age. In a study by The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, 24 percent of respondents said they either missed the deadline or did not know how or where to register to vote. Snapchat’s partnership with TurboVote gives young people a quick and easy way to register to vote. The social networking app will also send a Team Snapchat message to its U.S. users that are of voting age, as well as launching a National Voter Registration Day filter. Relevant news stories will also be linked a registration page, which users can access by swiping up.

Instagram also partnered with TurboVote in a similar manner to encourage voter registration. The app has been using Instagram stories and ads promoting voter registration and linking to a database of polling locations. They also created an “I Voted” story sticker, which will launch election day, which not only allow you to show your friends that you voted, but it will automatically link to polling locations so they can find their voting location.

Patagonia is taking it one step further from encouraging its social media followers to vote. The respected clothing company is closing on election day, Tuesday, Nov. 6, as part of a partnership with Time To Vote, joining 150 companies including Lyft and Walmart. This is not Patagonia’s first year taking time off. The company began closing on election day in 2016. Just as schools close for election day, by not having to come into work, Patagonia’s employees can actually take the time to go vote. “Demonstrating your company’s commitment to voting will reinforce how essential it is that every eligible voter shows up,” according to the company’s website. “And it will, in turn, help strengthen the idea that businesses can and will come together for a worthy common purpose: protecting our democracy by empowering all American workers to be good citizens.”

Cosmopolitan teamed up with Rebecca Minkoff, the queen of her self-titled fashion empire and role model to women everywhere, to create the #VoteTwice inititive. The strategy strives to encourage their own audiences to be politically active by voting in the primaries through t-shirts and graphics designed by Minkoff. Rather than only promoting voting in this election, Cosmopolitan has been promoting this initiative since the beginning of the primaries, with graphics of dates for each election by state. No matter your political affiliation, Cosmo encourages everyone to join national discussions and vote for the things that you believe in, specifically young adults. “We think that the more young people who are engaged the better, period,” said Cosmo’s Digital Director Jessica Pels.

Cosmo has also teamed up with Rock The Vote and IGNITE to help young people register to vote. Read more about their initiative at Her Campus WVU.

Of course, Her Campus has also been encouraging its readers to get involved in the election. The media company has always understood how powerful college students are as a demographic and how much we care about issues that really matter. Her Campus has published many articles featuring millennials’ political viewpoints in the past and are now promoting the midterm election through a partnership with nextgen america. Ads from their partnership are all over Her Campus’s website, as well as its Youth Vote page, which offers all the resources you need surrounding voting. Her Campus at WVU is following their lead by promoting voting at our university through a partnership with I’m Voting and a voting-themed week prior to the election.

Just as Her Campus signed their Youth Vote news release, so will we: Love you, please vote.

Kristen completed her undergraduate degree in journalism at West Virginia University in May 2019. She is currently pursuing her master's degree in the Integrated Marketing Communications program at WVU. During undergrad, she was the managing editor of Her Campus at WVU and editor-in-chief of Mirage Magazine in the 2018-2019 year. Kristen is currently the student editor at 100 Days in Appalachia and a freelance writer for West Virginia-based publications. Previously, she has served as the communications and marketing intern for the WVU Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, a writing and editing intern for New South Media and a photographer for the Daily Athenaeum. She is an avid fan of alt-rock, photography and advocating for women's equality and the prevalence of solutions journalism. Kristen hopes to one day report on internet culture and technology. 
Maura is a senior at West Virginia University, studying honors journalism and leadership. She was the president of Her Campus at WVU from 2018-2019, interns with ESPN College GameDay and works as a marketing/communication assistant for the Reed College of Media. On campus, she has written opinion for WVU's Daily Athenaeum, served as the PR chair for WVU Society of Professional Journalists and was a reporter for WVUToday. She teaches leadership classes for the Honors College and is an active member of both the Honors Student Association and Helvetia Honorary. Maura is an avid fan of The New Yorker, (most) cities and the first half of late-night talk shows.
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