Actions 4 is an upgrade to Salsa Classic's advocacy package. It is designed to significantly improve supporter conversions on Targeted Actions. The upgrade will be added to any Salsa product subscription that includes advocacy tools. Below are some answers to frequently asked questions about the upgrade.
What’s being updated with the latest Actions upgrade?
- Asynchronous letter submission - Actions 4 manages letter submission through an internal server, which reduces interruptions and increases supporter conversions. Previously, Salsa submitted letters in real time, and these submissions were subject to interruptions caused by legislator webforms.
- Continual submission - Actions 4 server technology attempts to submit actions continually, on behalf of supporters, to legislative targets until they are successful. Actions 4 also dynamically updates webform parsings to submit supporter messages to legislators (if for example it is not reachable when the supporter submitted it originally).
- Improved supporter experience - Because Actions 4 submits an action only after a supporter acts, supporters are not impeded when there are server problems on the recipient end. This improves the supporter experience and overall conversion rate.
- Topic matching - Salsa Actions 4 enables campaign managers to define a topic for an action, and Salsa automatically chooses the relevant topic requested by each legislator. Almost across the board, legislators who use webforms to collect constituent comments ask what topic or issue the constituent message refers to. Actions 4 will automatically assign the relevant value.
- Improved legislative district lookup - Actions 4's new lookup service greatly improves district matching on targeted actions and no longer requires supporters to find their zip+4 manually. Instead, Salsa requests street and 5-digit zip and automatically identifies the supporter's district.
- Improved target lookup for campaign managers - Actions 4 provides an enhanced lookup interface that enables you to drill down on legislative targets across different vectors: party, state, district, and role. Available targets are returned with their profile images.
How does this impact my current, Actions 3 advocacy campaigns?
When you upgrade to Actions 4, any new actions that you create will use the new Actions 4 technology. Your older, Actions 3 actions will be labeled in Salsa with an “Actions 3” icon. They will continue to function, but they will be limited to the Actions 3 data set, which will not be updated. (If you want to convert an action from Actions 3 to Actions 4, you can easily make a copy of the action. The new action will be converted automatically.)
NOTE: If you've already sent out the link to the Actions 3 action, consider a redirect to your new, Actions 4 copy!
How do I differentiate between Actions 3 and Actions 4 actions?
New "actions 3" and "actions 4" icons indicate the version of each action. A “legacy” icon denotes actions that were created before the release of Actions 3.
Are there any new required fields for my action pages?
Targeted Actions in Actions 4 asks all constituents for their street address and 5-digit zip to ensure that supporters are properly matched to their representatives (without having to prompt the constituent to look up their zip+4 for a second time).
How does Actions 4 handle situations in which a target requires extra fields?
If one or more fields are required by a representative but not originally included on a form, Actions 4 will request only one set of like fields (instead of one set per target). For example, if “Title” is required by 3 targets in a Targeted Action, supporters will be asked for their Title only once.
How do filtering options work when I’m looking up targets for my action page?
Actions 4 uses a faceted search and lookup screen to drill down on the targets that you want to include in your action. This includes the ability to filter by party, state, district, or role (at the local level) within each level of the government (federal, state, and local).
How do I take advantage of this upgrade?
You don't need to do anything and there is no additional fee associated with the upgrade. The upgrade will roll out automatically, starting the week of February 20.
What if I want to continue using Actions 3?
The upgrade to Actions 4 is required and enables you to continue to receive additional data updates from Salsa. Actions created under Actions 3 will continue to work, but will not use the newest data set from our legislative data provider. Consequently, if you have Actions 3 Targeted Actions that you want to keep using, you will need to copy them to create new, Actions 4 versions of those Targeted Actions. To do this, use the "copy" option to create a new Targeted Action. Salsa will automatically convert the new, copied Targeted Action to Actions 4.
What will carry over from my Actions 3 page when I copy it and convert it to an Actions 4 page?
When you make a copy of an Actions 3 page in the Salsa HQ, it will automatically convert it to an Actions 4 version. This includes copying the Reference Name, Action Title, Action Description, your message content, Supporter fields chosen, groups attached, all autoresponders, and any additional configuration options set under the "Follow-Up" and "Options" tab.
What additional changes do I need to make to an Actions 4 page that I converted from Actions 3 using the "copy" option?
Because the upgrade to Actions 4 involves new server and data management architecture, when you use the "copy" option, you will need to go to the Targets tab and choose targets for the new action using the enhanced filtering options we outlined above (See "How do filtering options work when I’m looking up targets for my action page?").
In addition, like the "copy" function in other packages, the copied action page will use the default website template set in your account. You can either leave the default or choose a new one from your list of website templates.
Are there new URLs for pages using Actions 4?
Yes, once you're upgraded, pages built using Actions 4 will include "action4" instead of "action3". For example your url may look like:
What if I have an active Actions 3 page with live links that I want to redirect to a new Actions 4 version that I've created?
Salsa will not automatically redirect a copied Actions 3 action to the Actions 4 copy that you make. However, if you want visitors to the Actions 3 page to be redirected to a new Actions 4 version you create, you can do this manually on a case-by-case basis.
First, you will need to copy the public facing URL for the Actions 4 page (for example, "http://yournode.salsalabs.com/p/dia/action4/common/public/?action_KEY=1234").
Second, navigate to the "Follow Up" tab of the original Actions 3 page. Set the redirect option to "Redirect to Another Page" and copy the public facing Actions 4 URL into the Redirect Path field:
Third, navigate to the "Options" tab and set the Status field to "Inactive." Setting the page to "Inactive" will tell Salsa to go to the redirect page, which you've set in the second step above to be the new, copied Actions 4 version.
Is there a new URL for the legislator lookup page?
Yes, once you're upgraded, the new "Legislator Lookup" url can be found on your main dashboard under "Useful Links." It will be very similar to the previous legislator lookup page but will end in "getLocal4.jsp" instead of "getLocal.jsp"
What are the list of topics to choose from when setting up my Targeted Action?
As noted above, Actions 4 will give you an opportunity to choose a topic that best fits the subject matter of your action. Salsa will then use that subject to auto-match the correct subject or topic that are requested by legislative targets. They include:
Arts and humanities
Banking and finance
Campaign finance reform
Congress and elections
Science and technology
Social services and welfare
Is there a new option to browse the data warehouse?
As part of the Actions 4 release, we have deprecated the "Browse Warehouse" option. However, we incorporated elements from that tool into the target selection process when you create an action. So now you can easily drill down, review, and find legislative targets efficiently in the process of building your action page without having to navigate to a separate section.
Still have questions?