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Blog > fundraising

    • Organizing

    • miniVAN

    How Mobile Canvassing Upgraded Campaigns in 2016

    November 21, 2016

    This year campaigns and organizations ditched paper and clipboards for smartphones and tablets like never before. Thousands of progressive organizers and volunteers used MiniVAN this year to contact tens of millions of voters. That's more than a 200% increase over 2012. More campaigns are understanding the value of going paperless: improving the canvassing experience and saving organizers critical time by cutting down on data entry.

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    • engineering

    2 Things That Could Be Holding Back Your Development as a Software Engineer

    October 21, 2016

    Many software developers are understandably eager to jump into their first job with both feet. They're raring to write great code to change the world, but then in the first few months they find themselves frustrated. "Why all the red tape? Why so much bureaucracy? Why don't they just let me write code and get out of my way? Why am I only doing small UI tweaks?" If this sounds like you, you may be encountering two of the most common roadblocks in a young engineer's career.

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    • Culture

    • Organizing

    GOTV Greatness: Tweets From Users Getting Out The Vote

    October 18, 2016

    Fall is here - and that means it's GOTV season! For organizers, campaigners, and volunteers alike, falling leaves goes hand in hand with door knocking, phone banking, and doing whatever it takes to get those commitments to vote + hitting your GOTV goals.  Oh, and say hi to any NGP VAN staff you spot out on the trail! We're getting out there on the turf to help out in the final run to November 8. Check out our favourite tweets from users in the field getting out the vote for their campaign:

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    • Organizing

    What’s the deal with GOTV? An FAQ for the Uninitiated

    October 18, 2016

    While many of you have a background in politics or organizing, there’s likely some of you scratching your head and wondering just what the heck this “GOTV” business is all about.

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    • Organizing

    • Digital

    • Phones

    • miniVAN

    • Online Ads

    Technology is Revolutionizing GOTV - Here’s How

    October 17, 2016

    This election may have felt like a (surreal) marathon at times - but thankfully, we’ve rounded the final bend and are locked into the last, critical stretch: the sprint that is GOTV.

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    • Innovation Platform

    • Online Ads

    3 Ways to Use Online Ads to Target Voters + Win Your Race

    October 17, 2016

    Mark Jablonowski is a partner and Chief Technology Officer of DSPolitical, where he has overseen the development of DemocraticAds.com, an award-winning self-serve voter targeted digital advertising platform. Last month, we were excited to announce a new, exciting partnership between NGP VAN and DemocraticAds.com. With just 22 days until Election Day, now’s the time most campaigns will be thinking of their digital ad strategy to get their candidate across the finish line.

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    • engineering

    How Drupal's Form API is Reinventing Progressive Activism on Wordpress & Beyond

    October 13, 2016

    Regardless of what gets you excited about progressive politics - whether it's health care reform, or making college affordable, or a clean energy future - the chances are pretty good that you've encountered a signup form, contribution form, or petition. These forms, which political campaigns use to gather supporters and survey their volunteers, are just about ubiquitous today.

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    • engineering

    Getting Out the Vote with OpenID Connect

    September 27, 2016

    The leaves are turning and pumpkins are going on sale, and that can mean only one thing: Political campaigns are gearing up to go door-to-door, asking for your vote.

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    • Innovation Platform

    • Online Ads

    Innovation Platform Spotlight: DemocraticAds.com

    September 26, 2016

    Continuing to build upon our commitment to transforming campaign technology through our Innovation Platform, NGP VAN is excited to launch a new partnership with DSPolitical to bring its award-winning, self-serve voter targeted digital advertising platform DemocraticAds.com to the VAN.

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    • Culture

    • Organizing

    The Real MVPs: Tweets from Users on the Campaign Trail

    September 19, 2016

    There's nothing we love more than seeing fundraisers, organizers + volunteers working tirelessly to elect Democrats and progressives with our tools - especially when they use memes, puppies, and awesome photos to tell us about their experiences! Here are some of our favorite tidbits from the Twitterverse. We 💙 you all - thanks for all you do.

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    • engineering

    Re-introducing Our Engineering Blog: Building an OS for the Progressive Movement

    September 15, 2016

    The progressive movement is a thriving ecosystem of political candidates, labor unions, interest groups, and grassroots activists. Together, these far-flung and energetic people have made history at the presidential level - twice! - in the space of 8 short years. They've brought down discriminatory barriers for LGBT individuals, guaranteed health insurance for every American, instituted major financial protections for consumers - and on and on. But how did they do it?  What makes this incredible movement tick?

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    • Fundraising

    • Phones

    • NGP

    5 Cold Calling Tips to Hit Your Fundraising Goals

    September 7, 2016

    The cold call has always been a staple of fundraising, and one of the best ways to solicit high-dollar donations. There's a certain amount of anxiety that goes along with calling potential donors and asking for their support - and their money. These days, potential donors receive solicitations from a myriad of media sources, both online and off. Fundraisers and campaigners know that prospecting never ends, especially towards the end of the cycle - so how do you cut through the noise?

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    • Organizing

    • Phones

    5 Tips (and GIFs) to Get You Excited for Phone Banking

    September 7, 2016

    Whether it’s your first rodeo or you’re a seasoned pro, phone banking can be tough. The anxiety of talking to thousands of strangers (some of which might not be thrilled about talking to you), the pressure of reaching your goals, and the feeling of responsibility to your campaign and candidate can leave you feeling a little apprehensive about sitting down and dialing that first number.

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  • How Spam Traps Destroy Email Programs (and Fundraising Metrics)

    September 7, 2016

    Spam traps are dangerous. They lurk on email lists, buried among legitimate email addresses, waiting to wreak havoc upon email campaigns and fundraising figures. In simple terms, spam traps are email addresses used by email service providers (ESPs) and anti-spam services to identify senders with poor data practices.

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    • Organizing

    Get Ready for GOTV: 5 Tools + Tactics

    September 7, 2016

    It’s almost time for GOTV, and that means it’s time to take stock of the tools and tactics you’ll be using to get your people down to the polls in the final, crucial stage of the campaign.

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    • Direct Mail

    • Innovation Platform

    Innovation Platform Spotlight: SpeakEasy Political

    August 5, 2016

    Digital innovation has touched almost every sector of the political world. Donating is easier online, organizers can go door to door with their iPhones, and social media outreach has changed the game. But older workhorse tools - like direct mail - have been slow to evolve. That changes this cycle.

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    • Organizing

    • Innovation Platform

    Innovation Platform Spotlight: Empower Engine

    August 3, 2016

    NGP VAN’s Innovation Platform is making it easier for campaigns of all sizes to run fully-integrated, sophisticated multi-channel voter contact campaigns. This week, we’re highlighting one of our many progressive technology partners from the Innovation Platform Marketplace - Empower Engine. A web mapping application for Democrats and Progressives, Empower Engine was co-founded in 2013 by NGP VAN alumni Julie Goldberg and Noah Glusenkamp.

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    • Organizing

    • Design

    Introducing Dashboard

    July 13, 2016

    VAN is the technology backbone of nearly every Democratic campaign and progressive organization in the country. Every day from now until November, thousands of organizers and volunteers will use VAN to manage key aspects of their work - but we know that it hasn’t always been easy for people to jump right into the work they need to do. That’s why we built Dashboard.

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    • Organizing

    • Design

    Mobile Canvassing Gets Major Upgrade with Script Branching on MiniVAN

    June 30, 2016

    More than ever before, campaign volunteers are ditching clipboards and paper lists for canvassing apps like MiniVAN. Mobile canvassing is already completely transforming field programs, helping canvassers get out the vote more easily and efficiently. Now, we’re ready to take field organizing to the next level – by introducing Script Branching on MiniVAN.

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    • Organizing

    • Digital

    • Design

    Cutting-Edge Digital Tools Aren’t Just for Fundraising - Introducing Field Automation on VAN

    June 27, 2016

    Traditionally, innovations in the digital political world have been focused primarily around online fundraising. Innovations like one-click donations, mobile responsive forms, welcome series emails, pre-filling form fields, and A/B testing have long been focused on improving conversion rates for contribution forms. That’s been great for digital fundraisers, but what about organizers? Today we’re excited to announce the launch of an entirely new suite of digital tools just for organizers: introducing Field Automation, Targeted Email, and Online Actions on VAN.

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    • Fundraising

    • NGP

    New NGP + LinkedIn Integration: A Vital Tool for Fundraising & Donor Research

    June 16, 2016

    One key feature that we provide on NGP is automatic matching to individuals’ Facebook and Twitter profiles based on their email address. This week, we’re excited to announce that we’ve added another key social network to our social matching feature: LinkedIn.

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    • Culture

    NGP VAN Named One of “50 Best Workplaces” by Inc. Magazine

    May 25, 2016

    WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Inc. Magazine named NGP VAN as one of its inaugural “50 Best Workplaces”, the first such measurement of American companies with up to 500 employees that deploy state-of-the-art techniques to keep their staff happy and productive.

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    • Organizing

    • Design

    Introducing Sidebar Navigation in VAN

    May 3, 2016

    We’re constantly working to improve our products and make them easier for our customers to use. One thing we’ve continued to hear is that you want a better way to move around VAN. Everyone from volunteers to administrators want to complete their work faster and more easily. There’s so much you can do in VAN - from cutting turf, to phone banking, to managing contacts - and our users asked for a streamlined way to complete tasks, one that doesn’t rely on main menu. So, we’ve designed something that allows you to do just that: Sidebar navigation in VAN. 

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    • Culture

    Investing in Our Employees' Future

    April 21, 2016

    Paying for college can be a huge burden, with tuition costs rising faster every year. Having a dedicated savings plan in place with automatic contributions makes it much easier to manage costs, pursue a degree, or save for a child’s future.  

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    • case study

    • predictive dialer

    Case Study: Using NGP VAN's Phone Tools to "Awaken Democracy"

    April 7, 2016

    This spring, more than 250 organizations representing a diverse array of movements and thousands of people are coming together in Washington, DC for Democracy Awakening - to mobilize to protect voting rights, get big money out of politics, and demand fair consideration of President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee. Groups like People for the American Way, MoveOn.org, NAACP, LCV Education Fund, Equality Federation, and many others have joined forces for this massive weekend of events. Mobilizing progressive activists on such a huge scale takes a lot of work and requires sophisticated organizing tools - so when event organizers began planning their outreach, they knew NGP VAN could help.

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  • Data Security and Privacy

    December 18, 2015

    Update: 12/19, 9:46PM EST Late last night we were directed by our client the DNC to restore the Sanders campaign's full access to VoteBuilder. NGP VAN staff worked through the night to ensure Sanders campaign staff were up and running by early this morning. For clarification, NGP VAN played no part in the October data issue that has been mentioned. We look forward to working closely with the DNC and our partners on the important next steps that will ensure Democratic success around the country in November. Update: 12/18, 3:53 PM EST Updating with additional information and clarification: First, a one page-style report containing summary data on a list was saved out of VoteBuilder by one Sanders user. This is what some people have referred to as the “export” from VoteBuilder. As noted below, users were unable to export lists of people.

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    • Design

    VAN 5.2 Update Features ProgressUI Overhaul

    December 3, 2015

    We take pride in designing experiences that help our users change the world, one action at a time.

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  • Democratic/Progressive Voter Contacts: 387 Million

    November 3, 2014

    Up 68% in 2014 over 2010 For Immediate Release:  November 3rd, 2014 On the day before the election, NGP VAN provided previously unreleased information that Democrats and progressives had made a total of 386,889,562 voter contacts so far in the 2014 cycle.  This is an increase of 68% over the voter contacts made in the 2010 cycle.  The increase will grow even larger after the voter contacts for Monday and Tuesday are factored in.

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  • NGP VAN Launches Innovation Platform, Significant Updates to Tools

    August 21, 2014

    Next Chapter for Progressive Tech Ecosystem Washington, DC – Tonight, at an event attended by hundreds of top Democratic and progressive campaign insiders and joined by thousands more through an online live stream, leading tech company NGP VAN launched the next major chapter in the evolution of the progressive political technology ecosystem and set a path that will continue to give Democrats and progressives a tech edge. 

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  • NGP VAN Launches Social Fundraising

    July 19, 2014

    WASHINGTON, DC – Today NGP VAN announced the public launch of Social Fundraising, a new tool that helps Democratic campaigns and progressive organizations empower supporters to raise money on their behalf. Unlike other peer-to-peer online fundraising platforms, Social Fundraising integrates both online and offline fundraising; a key feature for fundraisers who are frequently frustrated by the lack of offline integration in many online-only tools. 

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  • NGP VAN and Catalist Partner on Innovative "Activist Continuum" Project for the National Education Association

    June 6, 2014

    WASHINGTON, DC – The National Education Association (NEA) announced today that it is working with Catalist and NGP VAN to develop its “Activist Continuum.” This project uses Catalist “Big Data” analytics to synthesize and understand NEA member activity across a range of civic activities, and make that understanding of each member actionable in the NGP VAN software via features developed for the NEA. This will allow the NEA to interact with members at the correct level of engagement, on the issues they care about, leading to more action and greater efficiency.

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  • Network Effects Give Democrats Online Fundraising Edge

    April 24, 2014

    WASHINGTON, DC – Democrats up and down the ticket are seeing increased online contributions during this election cycle, powered in part by network effects that are providing them with improved conversion rates, due to the prevalence of NGP VAN, the leading tools provider to Democratic and progressive campaigns. Thousands of Democratic candidates and committees are clients of NGP VAN, ranging from Ready For Hillary, to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, to over 80% of the Democrats in the U.S. House, to thousands of other Democratic state legislative and smaller campaigns.

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  • NGP VAN Hires Congressional Leadership Aide for Senior Marketing Position

    March 17, 2014

     WASHINGTON, DC – NGP VAN, the nation’s leading technology provider to Obama for America and thousands of Democratic campaigns and progressive organizations announced that it has hired Kat Skiles, formerly the Press Secretary & Director of Online Strategy for the Democratic Caucus of the U.S. House of Representatives.

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  • ICYMI: Votebuilder the Foundation for DNC’s New Project Ivy

    February 26, 2014

    For Immediate Release WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week the Democratic National Committee Announced a new technology initiative, called Project Ivy, to help candidates across the country operationalize the data tools used by President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign and maintain an edge in the campaign technology race.

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