WASHINGTON, D.C. – During the American Association of Political Consultants’ annual Pollie Awards Ceremony – held virtually on April 3, 2020, because of Coronavirus – Cygnal won the Gold Pollie for Best Use of Peer-to-Peer Texting for their success in overcoming bias in P2P SMS polling, as well as the Bronze Pollie for Overall Best New and Unusual Tactic for their interactive online dashboards that allow clients to quickly and easily find information within complex polls.
“Our mission is to create intelligence for action, and we do this by continually innovating and pushing the envelope,” said Brent Buchanan, CEO and Founder of Cygnal. “It’s an honor for that work to be recognized by the AAPC.”
Cygnal spent 19 months scientifically testing the use of P2P SMS as a tool for inviting voters to participate in a poll. Then, they built a custom P2P SMS platform because none of the existing providers had the reliability or deliverability to get the necessary response rates. During testing, Cygnal’s research showed Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z overwhelmingly prefer SMS. And that’s just the generational breakdown.
Armed with this information, Cygnal utilized a stratified fielding process on its proprietary P2P SMS platform to ensure responses didn’t have the biases that come from the send-and-pray blanket text messaging strategy used by most of the market.
Prior to Cygnal’s interactive online dashboard, the last major transformation in how poll reports were created was the move from printed binders to PDFs of the same material – which was usually hundreds of pages. On a Cygnal dashboard, the toplines and key crosstabs for each question are displayed. From there, the user can access multiple filters to find whatever demographic group they want, and with one click the toplines and crosstabs for that group immediately appear.
This cuts down significantly on the time it takes to read and understand polling data. Because Cygnal processes all sample data in-house, they are able to build these dashboards internally, while others have to rely on external vendors, slowing them – and their clients – down
The AAPC’s Pollie Awards and Conference are the industry’s premier annual event and a Pollie award is the highest honor in political work. Thousands of submissions are judged by a bipartisan jury of industry elites. This year, the in-person conference was canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Instead, multiple webinars were held and a virtual awards ceremony was streamed online. Despite the struggles our country is currently facing, the online events were well-attended by leading political consultants, media buyers, public affairs specialists, suppliers, industry leaders, and journalists.
Cygnal is a national public opinion and research firm that specializes in data-driven approaches to decision making. Cyngal was recently named the #1 private pollster and the #2 pollster overall by Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight, as well as the #1 most accurate polling and research firm in the country for 2018 by The New York Times. Its team members have worked in 46 states on more than 1,100 corporate, public affairs, and political campaigns.