Why List Segmentation is Key for Data-Driven Advocacy

August 3, 2018 at 3:27 PM

In today’s technologically-driven world, data is king. Data collection reigns over decision-making in most industries, but provides particularly exciting opportunities for organizations (such as nonprofits, companies, associations, etc.) to gain deeper insight into their stakeholder base and leverage this knowledge. Untapped data serves no purpose, but exploring data through list segmentation and analysis provides actionable insights into the behavior and properties of stakeholders. In turn, this understanding leads to smarter advocacy, increased engagement and overall greater impact. 

As a side note, we’re using the term “data” in this post to reference data points that describe an individual stakeholder (“contact”), such as: name, location, profession, political activity, actions taken, etc. 

Standard contact data provides a layer of insight into who a stakeholder is (name, occupation, etc.) and where they reside (address, county, legislative district). These basic details are undoubtedly useful for surveying the stakeholder landscape at a high level, but the underlying power of contact data is revealed through list segmentation - the process of categorizing contacts in a database by specific factors. List segmenting allows staff to make better decisions about advocacy operations, content, planning and everything in between.

Organizations and other groups reliant on stakeholders can derive value through list segmentation in countless ways. Below are 3 examples were segmenting data creates value for advocacy groups: 

1. Determine Which Legislators Represent Your Strongest Grassroots Base 

For many organizations involved in political advocacy, it is necessary to know which supporters are constituents of a given legislator. With the right list segmenting tools, like Muster's Insight CRM, it is easy to generate lists of all contacts in legislative districts and figure out where the majority of your supporters live. Any additional data available on a contact’s profile in a database will allow for greater precision in creating meticulous lists tied back to political districts (ex: a list of all Democratic supporters who have donated more than $5k in District 5). 

2. Visualize the Distribution of Your Stakeholders 

The outcome of list segmentation can also be visualized. Muster's Insight CRM provides a data visualization tool which illustrates stakeholder location on both heat and marker maps. This access into stakeholder distribution is important because visual analysis can better inform decisions that rely on a deep understanding of who and where stakeholders are. You can print images of stakeholder distribution and back up your narrative when in face-to-face meetings with decision-makers! 

3. Organize Grass-Tops Lists

In terms of uncovering the political influence of your stakeholders, list segmenting can go a long way. Advocacy-centric list segmenting tools make it easy to find key influencers in specific geographic regions or political districts. Staff members at any organization can create lists of “grass-tops” stakeholders who have self-identified as individuals who are familiar with specific legislators.

List segmentation is a powerful, often under-utilized undertaking. The resulting analysis provides invaluable ways for organizations to better leverage their stakeholders. For more tips and tricks on creating custom and segmented lists, just contact the team at Muster - we're more than happy to share our tips! 

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