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Primate

Vote that Counts

  • United Kingdom
  • 127 hours

This microsite allowed nine national charity to compete to win £50,000 and resulted in a record number of votes cast, the most successful VTC campaign to date.

Voting for £100,000

Approached by the People’s Postcode Lottery and People’s Postcode Trust, we were asked to design, build and maintain a microsite for their annual Vote that Counts giveaway. This year nine national charities, including Oxfam, Childline and Amnesty International, were all competing for a £100,000 funding pot over an intense four week campaign period.


The microsite was constructed to be simple and effective with a bespoke, easy to use voting mechanic that allowed users to cast a single vote for their favourite charity. By sharing the site on Facebook or Twitter or by inviting their friends to use the Facebook app, users were granted a second opportunity to vote.

Vote bars and percentages

With over 83,000 votes cast and a 45% first vote conversion rate, the Vote that Counts 2013 resulted in a record number of votes and proved to be the most successful campaign to date.

The Vote that Counts website displayed on desktop and mobile phone

Partially responsive, the VTC site provided a mobile friendly view to make voting easier whilst on the go. A Facebook app was also created to allow users to vote directly through the social network. It also contained the ability for users to refer their friends to the app in return for a second vote.

Turning social media up to 11

Social media played a huge part of the Vote that Counts 2013, helping charities to spread the word and gather more votes for their cause. To facilitate and encourage sharing, the bespoke voting mechanism on the site was also heavily integrated with social media; utilising the Facebook and Twitter APIs, users were provided with a second opportunity to vote by sharing or tweeting the site. A integrated Facebook app was also developed and installed on several charities FB pages to allow users to vote directly through the social network.

The bespoke voting mechanism was heavily integrated with social media

Use of social media proved very successful and, over the four week campaign period, 28 million people were reached via Twitter and Facebook.

CPU usage and the number of visitors on a graph

Coping with demand

With nine high profile national charities in the running to win a grand prize £50,000, a high load of traffic was expected. To complicate matters, the heavy promotion and integration of the site with social media meant unpredictable spikes of large volume usage was very likely.


To cope with the intense bursts in traffic, the site was built upon a lightweight Ruby framework and hosted on our load-balanced VPS platform. The result was a very cost-effective hosting solution that had zero downtime, never exceeding 30% CPU usage.

Source code

Results at a glance

Stats taken from 24th Sep 2013 to 21st Oct 2013.

  • 150k Unique visits
  • 45% First vote conversion rate
  • Over 83,000 votes cast from 24th Sep 2013 to 21 Oct 2013
"We really enjoyed working with Primate, who created a well-designed, easy-to-use website for us and for our voters. The team are great – really helpful and they go out of their way to create exactly the right product for you. We had a record number of votes cast, our campaign was the most successful to date, and we’d definitely use Primate again."
Kate Pearson, Deputy Head of Charities at People’s Postcode Trust

Kate Pearson

Deputy Head of Charities
People’s Postcode Trust