Site Builds Traffic With Online Vote

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Most of the voting in the National Arbor Day Foundation's campaign to name a national tree will take place at its site, The campaign began Jan. 1 and continues through April 26, the day before Arbor Day.

The foundation is spreading the word through a series of public service advertisements that began Dec. 31 with an ad in Parade magazine. Ads ask people to cast their vote at the Web site. Those without Internet access can mail their choice to the group.

The campaign is designed not only to make people "more aware of trees," but also to bring people to the Web site, said Mary Schwaner, the foundation's Webmaster.

After online voters submit their required e-mail addresses, they can check a box to get the results of the vote and receive e-mail messages from the foundation, or they can send a get-out-the-vote e-mail to a friend.

The Web site, which was overhauled and expanded last February, now allows visitors to make donations, learn more about trees, or purchase caps, T-shirts and other items.

A newsletter that goes out every two months to 8 million National Arbor Day Foundation members promotes the Web site. During the tree-planting season, from early spring through fall, the site receives as many as 30,000 unique visitors per month, Schwaner said.

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