As the assembly elections in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry were held on Monday, there was a lot of conversation on social media around the polling. Using hashtags like #TamilNadu, #TN100percent, #TNVotes and #TNElection2016, Twitteratis started engaging with the online audience, giving them details about the polling status and also encouraging them to vote. Social media was used effectively by the government as well as the brands to motivate citizens to vote, in spite of the heavy rainfall in Tamil Nadu.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted on the morning of the Election Day, asking voters to exercise their right to vote and be a part of the democracy.
Election Commission (TN)
The Election Commission of Tamil Nadu adopted a different strategy to lure people to vote and used celebrity videos, Dubsmash videos and posters to encourage greater participation. In collaboration with Twitter, the Tamil Nadu Election Commission started the campaign #IvotedTN, through which it made sure that they reached out to every possible voter. They traced down users from Tamil Nadu through their API and sent them a private message to vote through #TN100percent. As a form of reward, they even sent out personalised digital posters signed by celebrities to encourage people to vote.
The EC had undertaken the 100 per cent voting campaign after coming across very low polling percentage in some booths in the 2011 Assembly polls and 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
According to reports, the Election Commission also partnered with Facebook for the Tamil Nadu Assembly Elections 2016 as well. Facebook users in the state were seeing news feed reminders with informational links about their polling stations, which was a way to remind people to vote.
Using the hashtag #MakeYourMarkTN, taxi aggregator Ola Cabs engaged with the online audiences on the polling day. It invited people living in Chennai to share their inked selfies.
To encourage voting and make the experience a smooth one for the voters, Ola Cabs even announced that there won’t be any peak pricing in Tamil Nadu
Phoenix Marketcity remained closed till 6.30 pm in order to encourage people to vote.
The online medical store, Netmeds encouraged people to cast their vote and get 15% discount on medicines. The hashtag #IndiaBanegaHealthy was also trending on Monday morning as enthusiastic Tweeps clicked a selfie of getting inked and posted on social media.
Tamil Nadu has immense fan following for its cine stars. Banking on it, there were a lot of movie portals as well as the government ones which used their popularity to spread awareness about voting.