6 Salsa Tools to Sort, Study and Segment your Supporters

Chelsea Bassett
July 1, 2015
Find out which Salsa tools you need to effectively segment supporters.

Do you know who your biggest supporters are? Do you even have enough data about them to segment your lists, deliver targeted messages, and get better results from your email campaigns?

Not to worry, Salsa can help!

Salsa’s donor management tools provide a window into your follower’s profiles, demographics, donation history, and can even help you identify your most active fundraisers, donors, and advocates.

Let’s take a look at six Salsa tools that can help you sort, segment, and study your supporter records. 

1. Easily Sort and Query Lists with Using a Wild-Card

Salsa’s query tool is a quick and flexible way to segment your supporter list using the trove of data that Salsa helps you collect such as their location, activity history, group membership, and everything else. For instance, you can drill down to a specific email address like name@gmail.com. But did you know you can also use the % symbol as a wild-card in a text-string query?

The trick to getting the results you’re looking for is to use % with the query operator “like,” rather than “is.” So, if you want to find everyone on your list with a Gmail address, you’d query on:

“Supporter Fields >> Email >> Like >> %@gmail.com”

Get more tips about queries and how to get the most out of them here.

2. Schedule your Query Exports

You probably know that once you’ve run a query, you can export your results to a data file. But did you know you know that Salsa’s exports feature also allows for a Scheduled Export option? This can be handy if you need to automatically generate the report at a future date, or even on a recurring future schedule. To use this option, locate the “Advanced Export Options” then follow these steps:

  1. Under "Export to a File, or schedule an export," click "Export Options."
  2. Set the "Run and Export this Report" field to "On a Schedule."
  3. Select a start time for the first report to run.
  4. Select the run frequency from the "Run the Report" menu.
  5. Select one or more (comma-delimited) email addresses to receive the reports.

Schedule query exports in Salsa

3. Quantify the Value of your Supporters using Scoring

Segmenting your supporters into distinct groups can dramatically boost email open rates and drive deeper engagement. While your queries and reports can segment your supporters by their activities and demographics, scoring lets you identify your most active supporters such as those who’ve donated recently or taken more than three actions – whichever is most important to your organization. It's a powerful way to segment your list and build communications strategies for different sections of your audience, from the casual to the committed.

Scoring in Salsa works by assigning point values to the different types of things your supporters might do (such as make a donation, register for an event, or join a group).

You can array all of your supporter’s actions on a single scale that you define – this gives you complete control over creating the definition of "most active.” From here, you can query and group supporters based on their activity level.

Scoring in Salsa

You can also create multiple scores to measure supporter involvement in different ways: for instance, organizers might be very interested in people proven to turn up to events, while fundraisers will prioritize donors. Maybe you want a Score to isolate people who are heavy online activists to see if you can upgrade them to donors. There's no limit on the number of different Scores your organization can create.


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4. Use Tags to Segment New Imports and New Signups

If you want to segment your list by new signups or recently imported lists, Salsa has you covered.

Every new supporter who uses a signup page is automatically tagged with the page’s unique key number (for example, “signup:page1234” where 1234 is the key number). This makes it super easy to grab a list of everybody who used that page. You can also apply your own tags to that page for further segmentation and outreach opportunities.  Learn about using tags to segment new imports and signups in Salsa.

Salsa does the same thing for imports. Each new record that’s imported is tagged (e.g.”import:created56789” if the supporter is new, or “import:updated56789” if the record matches an existing one in your database).

5. Track Subsets of Supporters with Groups

Groups are a way of tracking subsets of your supporters who meet certain criteria that set them apart from the rest of the list. These groups can be used as search criteria for queries and for targeting email messages.

Using Salsa you can create as many groups as you like and each group can contain as many of your supporters as you would like to include. They can also be made into automatic, self-compiling segments. Let’s say you want a group that always contains the records of all your supporters who live in California. You could build and save a query like: “Supporter >> State >> is >> CA.” Then create a “Californians” group.

Now, this is where it gets cool. You can set up a smart group using that same Californians query, and run it automatically each night, grabbing any supporters who meet the criteria and removing those who don’t. For example, if John Doe moves from California to Nevada and updates his address, he’ll be out of your group in 24 hours. If you want to hang on to John, regardless of where he moves to, you can create a “Greedy Smart Group,” and your group will never relinquish anyone who has ever been a member of that group.

Learn more about managing groups in Salsa.

Managing groups in Salsa

6. Identify your High- or Low-Performing Donors

Salsa’s query tool has some great options for querying your supporters by donation history. For example, you can identify important segments of high- or lower-performing donors such as everyone who has made a certain number of contributions, or a contribution above a certain dollar amount, during a specific date range.

One great way to put this to use is to combine query terms that include “counts” of donations in previous years and "counts" of zero donations in the current year. Using this sort of query, you can do some slick donor targeting, such as:

  • LYBUNT: “Last Year But Unfortunately Not This Year” – These are folks who care about your mission enough to contribute, and did so very recently, but they haven't repeated the gift this year. LYBUNT donors are definitely worth special outreach and messaging to induce a renewal gift.
  • SYBUNT: “Some Year But Unfortunately Not This Year” – Similar to LYBUNT, but incorporates people who have donated at anytime, not just those who gave last year.

But you can go beyond that. Consider the possibilities for custom-tailoring messages, follow-up or just internal reporting around folks such as:

  • Donors who gave two years ago, but not since.
  • Donors whose gift amounts have significantly grown or fallen during a particular period of time.
  • First-time donors, especially those who might have been on your list for some time before making a gift.
  • High-engagement supporters (perhaps defined by Salsa Scoring) who aren't donors.

As you can see, there’s very little about your supporters that you can’t discover and use to your advantage with help from Salsa’s supporter management tools. Happy data discovering!

If you want to unlock more online marketing and supporter engagement, check out these additional resources:

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