Case Study

Expanding the reach of a environmental advocacy movement in Australia

The Wilderness Society is Australia's largest community based environmental advocacy movement whose mission is to protect, promote and secure the future of Australian wilderness.

With the aim to implement an ambitious national Community Organising strategy across its state based Campaign Centres, The Wilderness Society worked with WebEdge Marketing to adopt a progressive and cohesive usage of the NationBuilder platform. 

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The project

As part of its new national Community Organising strategy, The Wilderness Society intended to use NationBuilder to grow its movement. Primarily, NationBuilder would be used to provide volunteer management and community organising activities, with an integration being implemented to connect to a 3rd party CRM platform.

The Wilderness Society engaged WebEdge Marketing to assist it in meeting its movement building goals. This would be an involved process to ensure all of the requirements could be met:

Driven by data

What is required of our data and how can we make it work across multiple systems? This was the first question that had to be answered in order to restructure The Wilderness Society’s existing data protocols.

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By looking through NationBuilder’s extensive documentation and comparing with existing data sets, WebEdge Marketing was able to document how we could adapt the data structures to best fit the needs of the organisation and platform. This allowed us to then output all the supporter data in the structure we needed and to utilise NationBuilder’s robust import function. 

Process mapping

Next came the task of planning how processes would be handled with NationBuilder. This meant envisioning how the platform would be used in day to day operations and how this would fit with organisational requirements.

We reviewed all the key functionality to see how it would meet the big picture: supporter management, lists, volunteers, events, surveys, communications (auto responders, email templates), reporting, dashboards, notifications, and permission sets. This allowed us to approach NationBuilder’s features with a holistic vision and put processes in place for each usage case and eventuality. 

Forging paths

The Wilderness Society’s community organising movement involves taking a supporter on a journey, from initial contact with the organisation, through to becoming an active member of the environmental movement.

With the process mapping for these supporter journeys in place, The Wilderness Society was able to utilise NationBuilder’s path functionality. Paths would allow the organisation to ensure that all supporter interactions and engagement could be tracked within the system and managed across multiple community organisers. A series of paths were planned based on known workflows and then adapted for use in NationBuilder.

The following image shows an example of a supporter journey workflow, with purple indicating a ‘path step’ in NationBuilder:

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Team training

Following the setup and configuration of the parent nation, a training nation was set up that would allow users to experiment with the new tools. Training workshops were held across Australia with the key Campaign Centre personnel to ensure consistent uptake and skill level. Topics covered included: understanding the People section, settings, permission sets, filters and views, lists, tags (tagging taxonomy and best practice), website and broadcasters.

In particular, the training focused on how the various paths had been configured to support work that the Campaign Centre staff had previously been managing via a number of spreadsheets. 

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The outcome

The NationBuilder platform has allowed The Wilderness Society to undertake a consistent implementation of its national strategy through all state based Campaign Centres.

“NationBuilder has brought all of our Campaign Centres into the one system,” said The Wilderness Society’s National Community Organiser Manager, Damien Ogden. “It has helped us reinforce consistent methodology, streamline our processes, and provided us with a national reporting capability that was previously not possible.”

NationBuilder has enabled The Wilderness Society to achieve greater insights through its Community Organising initiative and broaden its reach. 


 Learn more about WebEdge Marketing on their website and explore some of their previous NationBuilder work.

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