Every election there’s one guarantee – you’re going to see a lot of custom political signs. Along the highways, in people’s yards, and in public spaces, political signs are a reminder that an election is near. Here at eSigns.com we prepare to ramp up production so we’re ready to fill the rush of orders that we get for custom signs online.
Many people have wondered how effective political signs actually are. When it comes to spreading the word about an election, do political signs really work?
The short answer to that question is – yes. And we’re not just saying that because we’re in the business of making custom political signs. A number of studies since 2005 have suggested that political signs have an impact on elections in more ways than one.
Signs Can Drive More People to Vote
One professor decided to conduct a randomized experiment to see if political signs could encourage more people to vote. In 2005, a professor at Fordham University, Costas Panagopoulos, enlisted the help of volunteers the day before New York City’s mayoral election to see if they could influence voter turnout. Panagopoulos first identified 28 voting districts and matched them up into 14 pairs based on their past voter turnout. He then had volunteers go to one of the districts within each pair and hold up signs that read ‘Vote Tomorrow’ at intersections.
After the election, Panagopoulos reviewed the numbers of votes cast in each district. The districts where the volunteers held up signs scored 4 points higher on average than their control group companion district. Panagopoulos hypothesized that both the reminder to vote and the social pressure of the signs helped influence voter turnout.
Political Yard Signs Are Also a Barometer for Voter Turnout
Another study from Auburn professors in 2006 looked at the presence of political signs and the likelihood of voter turnout. As to be expected, people with a sign in their yard were three times more likely to vote.
Yard Signs Can Influence Others to Show Support for a Candidate
In 2008 a study was done in Franklin County, OH by Ohio State University and University of Colorado professors. Among their findings was the discovery that putting out yard signs was somewhat contagious. The researchers drove through 30 voting districts and noted that a person was more likely to have a political sign in their yard if their neighbors did. This same study found that young voters saw political signs as a comfortable form of activism.
Yard Signs Can Be Influential in a Close Election
Research from Columbia University found that yard signs can influence voter share by about 1.7 percentage points. While this isn’t huge, during a close election it can be the determining factor in which candidate wins.
So there you have it! Political signs can boost voter turnout, get people more involved and determine a close election. Make sure you get that extra 1.7% over the competition with custom political signs from eSigns.com.