Call time is essential to successful fundraising during a political campaign.  However, call time responsibilities take a lot of effort and care, so being organized and efficient during your calls is crucial.  While it’s important to know who you are calling (and why) on each call time list, the size of the list itself should also be a strategic consideration.  The perfect size for a call time list depends on a number of factors, including the stage of your campaign and the goals of your call time shifts.

Let’s look at how you can use call time lists of varying sizes to accomplish your campaign’s fundraising goals.

Long Call Time Lists

Longer call time lists are best used for early outreach.  For example, you could have a list of past donors that haven’t given your campaign the maximum amount that you haven’t reached out to yet this quarter.  The size of lists like these will vary depending on whether you’re running a state, local or federal campaign.  Still, long call time lists should have an average of 300-900 names on them. 

The long lists are typically used at the start of a campaign, when you’ll dedicate the most time to first-contact communications.  A list this size is more than a single person could handle in a call time shift and would need to either be split among a team or given a few shifts to complete.  These longer lists are also good for periodic check-ins at strategic points throughout the campaign, as they can help you find pockets of potential donors that are new to your campaign, that align with a particular issue, or that need follow-up calls.  Long call time lists aren’t seen as frequently toward the end of the campaign, when more targeting calling is needed.

Average Call Time Lists

In general, the average length of a call time list we see on Numero is between 100-125 names.  Average-sized lists are more targeted than long lists and include filter criteria such as zip codes, ask amounts, and favored issues.  Lists of this length are most common because they allow conversations to be generated based on targeted topics, which prevents overloading call time staff and volunteers.  You can use these average-sized lists to organize events, follow up on pledged donations, and increase your donor network in targeted ways.

You can narrow down the size of your call time lists by adding filter criteria to long lists.  For example, past donors to your campaign who haven’t given this year but live within 20 miles of a specific zip code. Creating lists with ~100 names allows you to target your outreach as you break up longer lists into more manageable ones.  For example, calling according to area code means you can form connections more quickly based on location and community

Average-sized call time lists are also the perfect size for a single person to complete in a timely manner.  You can maximize your call time efforts by being organized with a nicely targeted list that still covers significant ground with your goals.

Short Call Time Lists

There will be times, especially once the campaign is underway, where having short, very targeted call time lists is beneficial to your fundraising.  Lists of this size usually have 5-15 names on them and include filter criteria such as event RSVPs, follow up calls, thank you calls, or asks for large, very specific amounts.

Need Decides the Perfect Size for a Call Time List

As you can see, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for call time lists.  The perfect size for a call time list is the size that meets your campaign’s needs.  Long lists create a big picture, average sizes target your call time efforts, and smaller lists attend to those essential finishing details.

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