Signature Delivery

Signature Delivery Options

ActionKit provides several ways to deliver signatures to the advocacy Targets of your petitions and letters. However, only certain methods work for certain types of targets.

  • In-person Delivery: Create a PDF or CSV for in-person delivery or press events. In-person delivery is a lot more work than other methods, but is the only method with 100% deliverability! It is available for all target types.
  • Automated Delivery: Petition and Letter Pages have an additional screen'Delivery' where you can set up automatic delivery by email, fax or, for the US House, their internal electronic delivery system.
  • Bulk Delivery: Prompt a mailing to your page's target(s) with signature counts and links to download the full set of signatures.

Delivery to Federal Legislators

Federal legislators don't have public email addresses and most have moved to the use of capchas or other tests on their webforms. As a result, immediate email delivery is not available for US House Representatives or Senators.

For Senators, the only automated delivery option available is Batch Delivery. This method also works for the House.

The messages are sent to a database we purchase of Legislative Directors for both the US House and Senate. Coverage is not 100%. This is a proprietary database of non-public addresses that you can send a daily summary to using batch delivery . You can also prompt a delivery to Legislative Directors whenever you'd like through the mailer using bulk delivery.

Read more about the Legislative Director data source and how you can edit the contacts listed.

Deliveries to the House are also possible via Communicating With Congress which will immediately deliver constituent communications.

Communicating With Congress

For pages targeting the US House of Representatives, we offer an integration with Communicating With Congress (CWC), a House-approved delivery system that most representatives accept. Representatives don't need to open an email or download a CSV.

Note

Email, prefix, full name, and full address are required for CWC deliveries. We will automatically add these fields to your user form if you choose this delivery option. Signatures missing any of these fields will not be delivered.

This method ensures delivery for participating representatives but you may get fewer signers as a result of the additional required fields. If you plan to deliver the signatures in person or if your petition is primarily for list growth, you may want to use a delivery method that requires less information from the signer.

The Senate does not offer anything similar. If your page targets the House and Senate, you must also select the Batch option to deliver Senate signatures . If you've selected CWC, all signatures for House members are sent this way and only this way.

To use CWC, a super user must first complete the Name and About Text for your organization. These are available on the CONFIG screen, reached by going to the gear menu > Configure ActionKit > Communicating With Congress.

Then you can use CWC with any Petition or Letter page targeting the House. Check the Communicating with Congress option on the Delivery screen.

This exposes a few required fields for the delivery:

Campaign Subject: Subject line included with each message.

Library of Congress Topic: Pick the most appropriate topic related to your campaign.

Campaign Statement: Included in the delivery as the "Organization Statement".

For Petition Pages, we will prefill this using the Petition Text you entered on the Edit Content screen for the Page. You can edit the text shown but you must include something. Snippets are not rendered for CWC delivery so if you have any in the Petition Text you should edit the Campaign Statement to remove them.

For Letters, you must enter a Statement.

The message received by the House member includes:

  • the constituents prefix, name, address, and email,
  • the Organization Name and About Text
  • the Organization Statement
  • optionally, any comment provided by the constituent

The About Text, Statement and comments are each cut off at 10,000 characters.

Enabling Communicating With Congress on a page that has already collected signatures will retroactively deliver those for any users that have all of the required fields on record.

Reporting

Signatures get delivered hourly, and successful deliveries through the Communicating With Congress system are logged in the core_cwcdeliverylog table.

Automated Delivery

Petition and letter pages have an additional Delivery screen, where you can set up automated delivery by Fax, Email or Communicating With Congress.

Fax Targets

We offer fax delivery if you have an account with Interfax. After you've created an account, enter your Interfax login details on this configuration screen. The fax delivery option only shows once you have entered your account information.

Email Targets

Check the Email Targets box to display a drop down with the three email delivery options.

The choices are the same whether or not they work with the advocacy targets you've selected for your page, or if you haven't selected any targets. Be sure you are selecting an option that is available for your target types.

Choose from:

Immediate only: Sends a message immediately after a user signs. DOES NOT WORK FOR FEDERAL LEGISLATORS. This option can be used for state legislators, if they have an email address in our database, or custom targets, if you have entered an email address for them. When you get 30 signatures to any of the page's targets in one day, immediate delivery ends permanently for all targets. No further signatures are delivered for the page. It is possible to override this -- read more below.

Batch only: An email from your organization is sent to the target once each day when you have more signatures than a minimum threshold you select.

Batch delivery is available for federal legislators using a database of legislative staff (see Delivery to Federal Legislators data as well as for any target with an email address in our database.

Immediate then batch (recommended for state legislators and custom targets): Immediate delivery works as described above until you reach 30 signatures in one day. Then immediate delivery ends forever for all targets and daily delivery of your batch email begins. FEDERAL LEGISLATORS ONLY RECEIVE BATCH DELIVERY; there is no immediate delivery first.

Note

Immediate delivery does not work for federal legislators or for state legislators for whom we don't have an email. There is currently no email delivery option for the President.

Immediate Only

Check this box to display an Immediate Delivery Settings section with the following options.

Override Daily Limit: Immediate delivery is limited to 30 emails per target per day. This limit is in place because clients have suffered serious damage to their email reputation after Targets who received a high volume of deliveries reported the client for abuse. This can limit your ability to communicate with your end users and undermine your future efforts.

We recommend checking the override box only if the target is expecting to receive a lot of email (for example, if an agency has set up an email addresses for public comments or if you've talked to the target in advance).

If you check this box, you will also have to confirm your understanding of the risk involved by checking three additional boxes:

  • I understand that the ActionKit terms of service prohibit sending unsolicited email.
  • I understand that sending a large number of unsolicited emails to targets can negatively affect my sending reputation and may cause my organization's email to be blocked or my organization to be put on a blacklist. I understand that if I am placed on a blacklist as a result of improper use of immediate delivery that my organization will not be able to send email of any kind until the listing is removed.
  • I understand that if I am placed on a blacklist as a result of improper use of immediate delivery that We Also Walk Dogs will not treat the problem as an ActionKit emergency, additional costs may be incurred to resolve the issue and my organization may not be able to use immediate delivery in the future.

Remind me to set up batch delivery: This box is checked by default. The creator of the page will receive an email when immediate delivery ends for this page telling them that no additional signatures will be delivered automatically. Immediate delivery ends when ActionKit has sent 30 signatures to any of the page's targets in one day.

We suggest leaving this checked unless you are going to override the immediate delivery limit, send a bulk delivery mailing or hand-deliver a PDF of signatures.

Immediate Delivery Message

Next you will create the email to be sent to your targets. You must set a subject and edit the message body. These messages are sent without a wrapper and the from line is preset.

From Line: You Immediate deliveries show the user's name with an email address in your domain for the "from line", while the "reply-to" displays the user's email. By default the email address in your domain is "bounce@[yourdomain].org", but you can set this to something else in your domain using the User Generated Emails field under Page Settings on the CONFIG screen. These are sent from your domain because some ISPs prohibit sending an email using their domain in the from unless you are sending from their servers.

Here's what the From Line looks like for an immediate email after Joe Smith signs the petition:

from: Joe Smith <bounce@[yourdomain].org>
reply-to: Joe Smith <joe.smith@gmail.com>

Subject: Enter a subject. All immediate emails have the same subject. You can use snippets in your subject.

Body: Default text is provided:

Dear {{ target.title_full }},

I just signed a petition saying:

"REPLACEME: {{ form.statement_text|safe }}"

{% if action.custom_fields.comment %}
{{ action.custom_fields.comment }}
{% endif %}

{{ user.name }} {{ user.city }}, {{ user.state }}

This pulls in the Statement Text from your petition or letter page, then shows the user's comment (if one was entered), and finally the user's name, city and state.

Minimally, you must replace "REPLACEME". If you forget, we won't send the messages, but will send the admin who created the page an error message when a user signs the petition.

By default, petition pages include a comment field. This is built into the default petition template and is named "action_comment". Letter pages include the full body of the letter (which end users can edit) in the field named "action_comment". This syntax saves the entries as a custom action field named "comment" and the default message body pulls the values from that field. If you suspect that comments aren't showing in your immediate delivery emails (for example, if you submit a comment in a test message, but don't see it in the sample delivery email), make sure the templateset you are using for this page hasn't removed this action field.

Batch Only

This option is available for all targets with an email address in our database, including most federal legislators, where we deliver to a staffer (see Delivery to Federal Legislators).

Batch Minimum: Tell ActionKit how many signatures must be received in a day before a batch file is sent.

From Line: Select a From Line. We recommend selecting a from line that will allow targets to reply to you in case there is a problem.

Subject: Enter a subject. You can use Snippets by cutting and pasting them.

Message Body: Enter a body for the daily batch notifications.

Note

Be sure to include a file link or your target will have no way to retrieve their signatures. Click Files under Downloads in the Batch Delivery section of the Snippets.

The Batch Delivery section of the Snippets menu also has example subjects and message bodies for both petitions and letters.

File Delivery: Select at least one file format option or targets will not be able to download signatures.

Read about these settings in the Delivery Options section under Delivery Jobs.

Tracking Batch Deliveries: ActionKit automatically creates a new delivery job whenever the first batch delivery is created for a page. You can see which targets have downloaded signatures by going to the delivery job list, selecting the page and clicking on stats.

Viewing Sample Deliveries

Sign your petition using the email on your Staff account and a constituent address to receive an example of immediate and/or batch deliveries depending on which you've set up.

Multiple User Actions

Signatures are not de-duped for delivery, whether batch, immediate, through Communicating With Congress or in bulk. If someone signs twice on a page that allows multiple signatures, a message is sent each time they sign with immediate delivery and with Communicating with Congress, and both signatures are included in a batch delivery.

What Happens If You Change Your Page's Targets?

If you change the targets associated with a page, previous signatures will not be delivered to the new targets by fax or immediate delivery but they will be included if you enable batch delivery.

For Communicating With Congress deliveries, signatures will be delivered retroactively for any users with all of the required fields of prefix, full name, and full address.

Bulk Delivery

Send a mailing to your targets through the ActionKit mailer that provides a link to a secure site where your page's targets (or their legislative directors for federal legislators) can download a file of signatures.

Bulk delivery is most appropriate when your campaign has a specific deadline and you want to call your target's attention to the petition/letter at that moment. The rates at which targets actually download signatures are very low, so it's important to make your message compelling and to include key information about content and the number of signatures.

You'll be able to view a report on downloaded files from the stats section of the relevant Delivery Job.

Here are the steps:

1 On the Pages tab, under related tools, click on the Delivery Job button to create the PDF or CSV you'll link to from your mailing.

Read more about creating your file in the Delivery Jobs section.

Note

Be sure to preview your PDF for typos, formatting problems, etc. The PDFs are generated dynamically for each target so you don't need to get a final PDF from the preview screen, unless you want to download and print the PDF yourself.

2 From the Mailings tab, create a new draft.

3 On the Compose screen, minimally you must enter a subject, select a from line, and enter an email body.

Use the E-Delivery snippets to insert information about your delivery, including the number of signatures from constituents and the total on the page.

Always include the Download link because that includes the URL for the target.

Under Landing page, select the relevant letter or petition page.

4 Hit Save and target.

5 On the Target screen, select E-deliver Signatures under Special Criteria. ActionKit will only deliver your email for targets who have more than one signature.

6 Hit Save and continue.

7 Send yourself a proof! Make sure the download links work.

8 After reviewing your proof, send your message.

In-Person Delivery

You can generate a PDF for all of your pages targets or only some and limit it to certain dates. Read more about the options under Delivery Jobs.