How to use your voter file in NationBuilder


You can access the NationBuilder Election Center to acquire voter data for the 50 U.S. states. It generally takes about a week to get data into your nation. You can also load your own data into NationBuilder for elections throughout the world.

Here's how NationBuilder helps you organize a digital field campaign:

  • Use the Advanced search tool under the People tab to query people who have voted in several previous elections. These are your likely voters whose support level you want to determine.
  • Click the + button at the top of the search result and chose an existing list or create a new list for your selected voters.
  • Organize people by precincts to effectively manage voter outreach

Organizing people by precincts

  • Assign a point person to each precinct in your database from¬†People > Precincts
  • You can view contacts made by all point people from Dashboard > Contacts > Point person contacts

You can also watch "Organizing precincts" in high definition on our YouTube channel. 

Phone banking

  • Create multiple lists of people you want to phone bank, and then share them with volunteers who will be doing the phone banking. Don't share the same list with multiple volunteers, or they'll be calling the same people.
  • Phone bankers can call people straight from the control panel by loading their list and clicking Call Mode (to phone bank from the control panel, volunteers will need intern access or above).
  • Print a call sheet from any list for those phone bankers without access to a computer. They can record information such as support level directly on the paper, and then enter it the control panel later using data entry mode.

Canvassing and turf cutting

  • Turf cutting splits up your list geographically into small groups. From these groups, you can create walk lists that a couple volunteers can reasonably be expected to use to knock on all the doors.
  • Click on the map pin icon or "Map view" on a list to start turf cutting. You'll almost always want to sort by address when saving a list via turf cutting.
  • Once you've spit your list into several geographic chunks, click on Print sheets and select a walk list format to download and print a PDF walk list to hand to volunteers.


Support levels

  • Support level is recorded on a scale of 1 to 5. 1 is a strong supporter, 3 is a possible voter, and 5 is someone who strongly opposes you.
  • An eligible voter who has a support level of 1 or 2 will count towards the number of yes votes shown on your dashboard.
  • NationBuilder can help determine whether or not someone is eligible to vote for you if you have your campaign settings such as district, City and State configured. Double check you have this information entered by clicking Settings > Political > Office.

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  • commented 2014-06-12 19:38:40 -0700 · Flag
    thanks CJ. I did speak with one provider and was told they did not do business with people like me, republicans.

    I do not want to have to duplicate work so I will seek other apps that might work with your platform or just go another platform all together.
  • commented 2014-06-12 13:57:50 -0700 · Flag
    Charles, several NationBuilder Apps exist that can provide mobile canvassing support. As of this writing, Summit Political Apps, Organizer, and CanvassNow could provide those services. You can find them in our apps directory: http://nationbuilder.com/apps

    You can also have people enter information on walk sheets and input the findings at a later time.
  • commented 2014-06-04 04:01:33 -0700 · Flag
    When canvassing door to door and collecting data does the system support the onsite input of data via smartphones or tablets by the volunteer or does the volunteer bring back the sheet of paper and we have another person input their findings?
  • followed this page 2013-01-04 12:38:40 -0800