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True Blue Analytics

We built a data exchange system that focuses on providing progressive organizations and democratic campaigns with information on potential donors that have either in the past contributed or might be open to contributing to support them and their cause.

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What Problems Does
the True Blue Analytics Data Exchange System Solve?

Grassroot fundraising has grown significantly in recent years and people are more willing to engage and contribute to solving issues around the world. Even so, it can be difficult for campaigners or organizations to get in touch with their potential donors.

Cold outreach to private individuals in order to gain their support is a very time consuming process. Identifying those people who are more likely to donate to the member or cause in the center of the campaign is even more critical.

True Blue Analytics facilitates this process by connecting interested parties with the people who are most likely to support them and their causes.

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Project Goals

Improving the outreach process for candidates and organizations alike to potential donors was always at the heart of the True Blue Analytics team. They supported campaigns across the country to grow their online fundraising operations by connecting them with the people who are most likely to support them and their causes. 

Having a very good understanding of the power of data and how far behind the progressive space is when it comes to utilizing analytics, it was natural for True Blue Analytics to envision a solution that could streamline this process.

By combining their domain expertise with the know-how and experience of the JHMG team, the True Blue Analytics data exchange system was shaped.

The goal of the platform is to facilitate access to relevant donor information and provide a reliable and compliant source of data to interested parties, which allows data crunching based on specific needs and interests.

The result was a more focused approach to identifying potential donors for any campaign.

System Design

True Blue Analytics is a web platform for finding and purchasing information on donors who are most likely to support the cause that a candidate or an organization stands for. Besides the quantitative aspect which is critical, there was a great deal of emphasis on the quality of the data that is sourced in the system.

Not only does the system allow the data to undergo rigorous checks and periodic reviews, but it also enables interested parties to query the dataset using criteria that are most relevant for them. From geographical location to the House of Representatives and State Senate districts in which they are located, the donor information can be filtered using relevant terms.

System Build

Tech Stack

Javascript
Laravel PHP framework
Angular Typescript framework
MySQL

PM Systems

BrainLeaf – Initial planning
JIRA – Development teams management
Bitbucket – Code repositories
Confluence – Documentation
Harvest – Time tracking

System Features

 
Advanced search, secure purchase, existing data validation, and duplicate detection are only a few of the features that True Blue Analytics supports.

Advanced Search:

From geographical location to the House of Representatives and State Senate districts, the donor information can be filtered using relevant terms.

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Duplicate detection:

We understand that campaigners might be using data from multiple sources, so we do our best to provide relevant, non-duplicative information. Any donor information that the user already owns, either from this system or from third parties, can be eliminated from the dataset to be purchased. The user’s data is and remains their own, so the system provides various mechanisms which alleviates any concerns from the users, both from a technical and legal standpoint.

The legal documents that a user must accept in order to use the tool have various clauses which extensively cover the data exchange process. These documents are updated with ease on a regular basis by the system administrators, from the Admin panel.

Moreover, when uploading an existing dataset of donor records, in order to filter our results that are already available to them, the users can opt to import clear text or hashed email addresses of their donor information for comparison purposes. The later option offers the highest degree of confidentiality. By hashing first the email addresses, the users can rest assured that there is no way to read their donor information. In this case the tool is able to avoid duplicate purchases by comparing the hashed values of the donor information in the database with the set of hashed values that a user imports.

Secure purchase:

True Blue Analytics uses Stripe for secure on-line payments, which is one of the largest and most reputable companies in this space.

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Immediate data access:

Once the transaction is settled, the user receives instant access to the data they just purchased so they can get in touch with potential donors as soon as possible.

Real time stats:

The platform has a dedicated admin area for consulting the user base and controlling access to the platform. Relevant statistics are shown to provide insights into business operations.

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Real time transaction log:

Each transaction that took place is visible in the admin panel with details such as the number of records purchased and the amount paid, as well as the version of the legal terms that were agreed to by the user at the time of that purchase. Any information related to the payment mechanism is solely processed and stored by Stripe.

Easy data maintenance:

Donor data is subject to rigorous checks and periodic reviews. Admins can easily enrich or alter the data available in the portal through a fully automated process.

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Security Features

Processing and safe-keeping personal information is not something that can be treated lightly. Advanced security mechanisms have been implemented to ensure adequate protection mechanisms for the potential donor details.

Data segregation:

The donor information database resides on its own server, separate from the application server, protected by a firewall that will allow only calls from a specific IP address (i.e., the IP address of the customer dashboard application and admin panel) via HTTPS.

Secure server to server communication:

Use of expiring tokens as an additional security mechanism for server to server communication.

Data thresholds:

Limited number of rows can be returned at once up to a pre-configured threshold value (i.e., 50,000 records per purchase).

Data opacity:

Most of the PII and data points associated with donors are hidden within the platform. Accepting data processing terms and conditions are a requirement for each transaction, and data is disclosed solely after transaction settlement.

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Integrated Systems Management

As with many SaaS systems, a number of 3rd party systems have been incorporated into the True Blue Analytics data exchange portal in order to support the various application flows.

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Stripe – Payment Processing Platform for the Internet

The Stripe integration allows the users to securely purchase donor information using their credit or debit cards. It also covers scenarios like using discount codes for purchases and the invoice generation process. The payment details / card details are handled entirely by Stripe, which is one of the largest companies operating in the payment processing space.

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Mandrill – Transactional email service

Mandrill is a transactional email service and in the case of TBA it is used for sending notifications when various actions are performed. From account creation and password reset, up to informing the admin team that new users have signed up, there are multiple flows that require notifications to be sent either to the end user or to the platform administrators. All these notifications are sent by email and are handled using Mandrill.