How support status is determined

Every profile in your database has a support status. Support status is either supporter, non-supporter, or prospect. A prospect is someone you want to become a supporter.

Using support level, you can specify whether someone is a supporter. Profiles with support level 1 or 2 are supporters. Profiles with support level 4 or 5 are non-supporters. Defining support level for each profile can be tedious, so an automated process will approximate support status when support level doesn't exist. 

Support status primarily distinguishes between people based on whether they have opted into mass communication. You can communicate one-to-one with anyone in your people database. Non-supporters will never be included in mass communication. Text message blasts can only be sent to supporters. You can send email blasts to supporters or to prospects. Be extremely careful when emailing prospects to avoid being perceived as a spammer. 


Support level clearly defines support status

Support level indicates whether a person supports an organization's mission. Support level is a 5-point scale, with 1 indicating strong support and 5 indicating strong opposition. People with support level of 1 or 2 will always be supporters, while people with support level of 4 or 5 will always be non-supporters.

A person whose support level is "3 - Undecided," can be a supporter, prospect or a non-supporter.

  • Editing support level from blank to 3 will have no impact on support status.
  • If a person has support level 1 or 2 and is changed to support level 3, the person will become a non-supporter. 
  • If a person has support level is 4 or 5 and is changed to support level 3, the person will remain a non-supporter. 
  • If a person with support level 3 has not taken a supportive action in your nation, the person can be changed from a non-supporter to a prospect.

It may be confusing that people with support level 3 - Undecided are not always prospects. The "prospect" support status is primarily used to gather people who have neither opted in nor opted out of email communication from your organization. 

You can edit support level:

Since identifying support level is key to organizing people, we recommend updating support level every time interaction occurs.


How actions determine support status

If a person does not have a support level, the actions she's taken will be used to determine her support status. 

These actions make prospect or non-supporter become a supporter:

  • Donating
  • Volunteering
  • Fundraising
  • Becoming a member
  • Opting into email blasts and providing an email address
  • Opting into text messages and providing a mobile phone number
  • Following a broadcaster on Twitter

These actions make a supporter become a non-supporter:

  • Unsubscribing from email blasts
  • Unfollowing a broadcaster on Twitter

Donors, volunteers, members, and fundraisers will remain supporters if they unsubscribe or unfollow. Similarly, if someone is subscribed to email blasts, she will remain a supporter even if she unfollows a broadcaster on Twitter. 

When prospects take a positive action, they become supporters. When prospects take a negative action, they remain prospects. 

These actions will bring someone into your nation as a prospect:

  • A broadcaster retweets the person's Twitter account.
  • The person mentions a broadcaster's Twitter account on Twitter, but is not following the account.
  • The person liked a post on a broadcaster's Facebook page.
  • The person was imported as a prospect.

Actions are used as a rough guide to defining a person's support status. By updating a person's support level, you can over-ride the support status set by a person's actions.


Import support status

During a one-time import, a decision needs to be made whether the import includes supporters / non-supporters or prospects. 

If the records being imported are people who have opted into communication, select supporters / non-supporters. Any new profile created with an email address, mobile phone number, Facebook username/ID, or Twitter login/ID will be labeled a supporter. New profiles imported without one of these elements--email address, mobile number, Facebook, or Twitter--will be labeled non-supporters.

If the records being imported are people who have not opted into communication, select prospects. When prospects is selected, all profiles created will be labeled prospects, including records with email address, mobile number, Facebook username/ID, or Twitter login/ID.

When records are imported with support level and opt-in status, the above rules will not apply.

Records imported with:

  • support level = 1
  • support level = 2
  • email address and email opt-in = Y
  • mobile number and mobile opt-in = Y

will always be supporters.

Records imported with:

  • support level = 4
  • support level = 5
  • email opt-in = N
  • mobile opt-in = N

will always be non-supporters.

Support level is more important than opt-in status. For example, if a record is imported with support level = 4 and email opt-in = Y, the profile created will be a non-supporter.

One-time imports updating existing profiles may change the support status on those profiles. The expectation is that the first goal of engaging prospects is to determine whether they are supporters or non-supporters. The status will be applied to new people through your import but will not update existing people unless the box is checked to overwrite data.

A new profile created during a donation import will always be a supporter, unless the record includes support level 4 or 5.

Similarly, a new profile created during a membership import will always be a supporter, unless the record includes support level 4 or 5.

New profiles created during a voter file import will always be prospects, unless the records includes support level. 


Edit support status in a profile

Since supporters know about an organizations and prospects do not, a supporter can only become a non-supporter. You aren't able to change supporters into prospects.

Here are some examples -

Maria was added to the database when a broadcaster retweeted one of her tweets. That action made her a prospect. When I edit her profile, I can change her support status to non-supporter. I could also edit her support level.

change prospect into non-supporter on profile

The above options are also available in the profiles of non-supporters.

On the other hand, Anneke was added to the database when she followed a broadcaster on Twitter. That action made her a supporter. When I edit her profile, the only way I can make her a non-supporter is by editing her support level.

change supporter using support level in profile

Since Anneke is following a broadcaster on Twitter, she cannot be labeled a prospect because she knows about the organization. Her support level can be updated to "3 - Undecided."


Batch update support status

A list of people can be batch updated to Prospect = Yes or Prospect = No.

batch update whether people are prospects

If I batch update a list with Prospect = Yes, the following happens:

  • Non-supporters on the list become prospects.
  • Prospects on the list remain prospects.
  • Supporters on the list remain supporters.

If I batch update a list with Prospect = No, the following happens:

  • Non-supporters on the list remain non-supporters.
  • Prospects on the list become non-supporters.
  • Supporters on the list remain supporters. 

Support level: the key feature of a profile

How to email prospects

How to set up email blasts

How to use text messaging

If you’re unclear on how this feature works, please ask a question. If you would like to see changes to this feature, please submit a suggestion.