No matter your role, if you work on a campaign full-time, it’s likely you will use NGP VAN software.

In this blog, we will introduce you to some new integration tools that have been rolled out by NGP and also re-introduce you to older integration tools of special interest while your campaign works remotely.

Google Sheets and NGP

For campaigns working remotely, the April 2020 NGP update brought forward a long-awaited feature: Google Sheets integration.

Now campaigns can collaborate on data collection and upload this data to NGP from anywhere.

The Bulk Upload Wizard

Log into your NGP system and navigate to the Data Entry section on your sidebar. Select the Bulk Upload Wizard. Once there, select the option to Load New Contacts Directly, which will bring you to the instructions page for uploading new contacts.

NGP Integrations

Important information about Google Sheets and NGP

Google Sheets are stored at the time they are linked, meaning that the data you upload will stay that way in NGP. Any subsequent changes will not be reflected in NGP.

  • Only the first worksheet of your spreadsheet is uploaded.
  • If your Google Sheet has column header information (like name, address, donation amount, etc.), in the first row, the file cannot have more than one column with the same name.

Under File Source, select Google Sheets instead of Direct Upload. A bar will appear for you to enter the link of your Google Sheets spreadsheet. You will need to set permissions for NGP to access your data.

NGP Integrations

Following your successful upload, you’ll have a chance to review your data and assign mappings if you’d like. If your Google Sheet contained mapping before, you likely won’t have to make any changes.

NGP Integrations

Once you hit Finish, your data now lives in NGP, and is accessible with a single click!

For more information on Google Sheets and NGP, check out this video from NGP and our “How to Use Google Sheets in NGP” Mini-Lesson.

Zoom and NGP

Web-conferencing software like Zoom has become one of the most effective tools for engaging with supporters thanks to the impressive amount of simultaneous attendees it allows.

NGP VAN + EveryAction launched a new Zoom integration tool to help campaigns mesh NGP VAN event management tools with Zoom meetings and webinars.

This will help you:

  • Track attendance of your Zoom events
  • Share data from your Zoom events
  • Capture engagement data

Zoom Integration and Your Campaign

How can the NGP VAN + EveryAction and Zoom integration help your campaign?

If your campaign decides to host a virtual fundraising event, NGP’s new integration tool can help you track attendance and sync Zoom meeting registrations to EveryAction NGP VAN events.

With the ability to store registration and attendance in this tool, your campaign can schedule stand-alone follow-up emails or build automated workflows for your event attendees. You’ll also be able to track participation and identify engagement trends. This means you can see who’s responding and interacting with your content and have the data to analyze for the future.

Zoom Webinar and Zoom Meeting Apps

NGP VAN + EveryAction have created two separate apps for Zoom integration:

  • One for webinars
  • One for meetings

Not sure what the difference is?

Webinars are designed so the host and any designated panelists can share their video, audio, and screen. Webinars allow view-only attendees, meaning that the only person who can speak is the presenter. Attendees also can interact via Q&A, chat, and answering polling questions.

NGP Integrations

Meetings are designed to be a collaborative event: all participants can screen share, turn on their video and audio, and see who else is in attendance. In meetings, everyone can speak.

The Zoom Webinar App

The Zoom Webinar app allows for your campaign to sync engagement data between a Zoom webinar and a corresponding event in the NGP software. Your engagement data, which is essentially your supporters’ and staff’s involvement with your content, is key to tailoring your campaign content to these audiences.

Why is this important?

Since your campaign will use webinars as presentation tools, like for volunteer trainings or hosting fundraising events, this linkage provides your campaign access to engagement data from your virtual events.

This will help you create effective targeted asks and craft responsive supporter engagement campaigns.

For example, if the data tells you your volunteer, Lee, has registered for and attended all of your webinars, you’ll know you can rely on Lee to carry out important tasks you covered in volunteer trainings. The same can’t be said for another volunteer who registers but never attends.

Click here to view NGP VAN’s instructional video on Zoom integration for webinars.

The Zoom Meetings App

The Zoom Meetings app also allows for your campaign to sync engagement data, but between a Zoom meeting and a corresponding event in the NGP software.

Just like the webinar app, by storing registration and attendance in the integration tool, you’ll be able to:

  • Schedule individual follow-up emails based on attendance data
  • Build automated workflows for your event attendees
  • Track participation and identify engagement trends for events like volunteer and staff trainings

Click here to view NGP VAN’s instructional video on Zoom integration for meetings.

Permissions Required

The NGP VAN + EveryAction integration app will require some specific permissions so it can access your Zoom data for syncing.

The Zoom Webinar app will require the following permissions on your account:

  • View report data
  • View all user information
  • View all user webinars
  • View and manage all user webinars

The Zoom Meetings app needs the following permissions on your account:

  • View your meetings
  • View and manage your meetings
  • View your user information

Getting Data from Zoom into the NGP Database

NGP VAN writes that “employing good registration and security practices also enables good data practices.” When you collect actionable data from your virtual event, NGP VAN recommends you make sure to:

Require Registration

Why?

Although it may be tempting to directly send your invitees a link to your Zoom event, requiring Zoom registration ensures your attendees can be easily identified. This is true for manual data processing, and it will also be required for the Zoom integration to function.

How can you manage registration?

Right now, you can capture registrations by using Zoom’s built-in registration forms or manually uploading registrant data to Zoom. With the NGP VAN/Zoom integration, you’ll be able to use NGPs event tools and the signups will be automatically sent to Zoom.

NGP VAN says the easiest way for you to manage registration will be with the NGP Online Action forms because they provide the most flexibility for branding, sharing, and data collection.

Ask for a Phone Number

Why?
Requiring a phone number during registration guarantees that you can track the participation of supporters who dial into your event.

How can you do this?

Include phone number as a required form field on the Zoom, Online Actions, or other event registration forms.

Develop a Consistent Plan for Getting Data into NGP

Why?

Being meticulous with your event participant data allows you to act on that data quickly and easily. You can be confident in your targeting of future invites and your history of interactions.

How do you do this?

While right now this can be accomplished by bulk uploading Zoom Webinar Report data to your database, once the integration is enabled, Registrations and Attendance will automatically sync from Zoom for both Webinars and Meetings. This syncing, paired with the other best practices above, will outperform what you can do manually, take less time, and decrease the amount of duplicate or unloadable data.

More information about the rollout of the NGP VAN + EveryAction and Zoom integration can be found on the NGP VAN blog and in our “How to Use Zoom with NGP VAN” Mini Lesson.

Facebook and NGP

Facebook has the largest user base of any social media site in the United States. With 2.7 billion monthly users worldwide, it’s safe to assume a large portion of your existing or potential supporters are on Facebook. Campaigns need to be advertising on Facebook, and NGP VAN’s Facebook integration tool is a great way to get started.

What Does NGP VAN’s Facebook Integration Tool Do?

In their 2017 blog, NGP VAN writes that the Facebook integration tool “integrate[s] directly with Facebook Ads Manager to help users build awareness around promoted issues, grow a supporter base, and inspire individuals to take action.”

Before NGP VAN’s Facebook Ads Manager integration, campaigns had to craft advertising efforts within Facebook itself. With this new tool, you can create ad campaigns and access the analytical data right from NGP 8.

Targeted Lists and Ad Campaigns

The Facebook integration tool allows you to create targeted ad campaigns that group certain supporters for specific events, and then keep track of the data for that event in NGP 8. To create a targeted list (such as folks in a specific area code, or a specific age group) create a list in NGP 8 and save that list as a search.

For more information on custom audiences and how Facebook uses them, view their help guide.

Once your search is saved in NGP, you’ll then want to create a new ad campaign. To do this, navigate to the Digital Engagement section of your NGP 8 Main Menu and select Digital Ad Plans. Select Create a Plan in the upper right-hand corner.

NGP Integrations

NGP Integrations

Enter the basic details of your event and click Create. You should then be brought to the Ad Plan Build Wizard. Within this wizard, you’ll be able to add additional details about the campaign, like dates, your budget, and the platform for the ads (aka, Facebook)NGP Integrations

Once you’ve input all of the details for your event in NGP 8, you’ll move onto the Audience section. Here, you’ll select the list (created above) that you’d like to include as the target audience.

You’ll also need to assign a source code to your ad plan to export it and track its performance in reporting.

A dialogue box on the right side of the screen will tell you what still needs to be completed before pushing to Facebook! Make sure that you’ve completed all of the steps before hitting Continue.

NGP Integrations

NGP Integrations

Finally, the Review step will allow you to look over all aspects of your newly created plan. At the bottom of the page, there is an option to Push to Facebook. Update the contact history option and, if necessary, connect your campaign’s Facebook page.

NGP Integrations

You’re all set! Just hit Upload and Complete.

Reviewing the Campaign Report

You probably already know the importance of the Insights section of your Facebook page, where you’re able to see:

  • Whether you’ve gained followers and likes
  • Who is liking and engaging with your page
  • Which types of posts are performing well and which didn’t go over so great

NGP VAN’s Reports Manager will also provide you with data regarding your Facebook ad campaign. Navigate to the Digital Ads Report for information on your ad’s performance, such as the number of views or new contacts reached. If your ad is connected to an online contribution form, the report will also provide a breakdown of contribution details, like the contribution counts and total revenue.

NGP Integrations

For more information on the Reports Manager, review this video.

Click here for a transcript of this video.

*Included images from ngpvan.com

NDTC Additional Resources

For more NGP content, check out our NGP course series, beginning with NGP 8 Fundamentals: Navigation and Contact Management. This course and its sequels will teach you how to use NGP 8 to boost your campaign’s fundraising, email, event management, and reporting efforts and how to integrate NGP 8 with fundraising, social media, and voter databases.

Don’t forget to check out our NGP Mini Lessons:

Next Live Training

NDTC Virtual Live Training

October 1, 2020

1:00pm - 2:00pm (ET)

Online Academy

The training and tools you need, when you need them. Courses are available 24/7. Are you a candidate, campaign staffer or volunteer, at the beginning stages of your campaign or in the home stretch? We have the courses to address your specific needs and arm you with the knowledge to win.

View course catalog

Not sure where to start? Take a short quiz to help you determine the best place for you to get started.

Take the quiz