An important step in preparing your new community for launch is uploading your user data as records within the 360Alumni community database. You may also need to periodically add new users to the 360Alumni community (with graduating classes, new cohorts, etc.). The User Records Template is an excel spreadsheet formatted to prepare an upload into the 360Alumni database.
Please download the User Records Template to get started. As you review the file, below you will find descriptions of a few of the column headers:
- Record ID: This is a unique identifier associated with each user record. Usually this ID is associated with an institution's 3rd party CRM tool. Storing the unique ID with users in the 360Alumni database empowers you to share information across your data sources/tools.
- Social Class Year: This field captures one, four-digit year value. You can can customize the name of this field for display across the community.
- Preferred Phone: This should be the text value 'mobile', 'work', or 'home'.
- Association Fields: These are fields used to capture the characteristic(s) most important to you, or your users, in identifying themselves within your community. For example, Higher ed will use these fields to capture degree, area of study and graduation year (Bachelors Degree, Finance, 2003). High schools and non profits use these fields to capture member type. For example, Alumni, Student, Staff, Parent, Volunteer, etc.
- Association 1 is a required for each user to complete within their profile.
- Association 2 is an optional field and used in conjunction with association field 1. - Association Fields (columns AN-AV). Association field 1 is required. Association Field 2 is optional, and is a dependent field.Using the above higher ed example: Association field 1 would be Degree. Association field 2 would be focus. As a user I would select 'bachelors degree' , 'finance', and '2003'. If you have a second data value that you would like to capture (that is related to association field 1), you could utilize the association field2.
- Tags: Tags are an optional tool used within the user profile. Tags allow users to define themselves using a series of characteristics. As the admin, you can create the title for the "tag" selection. Then create a list of characteristics, a 'tag bank', that the user can then select from. The user can select multiple characteristics. You can create an unlimited amount of tags. We can import these as comma separated values.
- Many 360Alumni clients use tags to collect groups, associations, or organizations that the users belong to (or were a member of in the past).
- Custom Fields: Administrators can create as many custom fields as desired. These fields create new options in the user profile to collect information. Custom fields can be free form text or drop down, multi-selection style values on the profile page. Custom fields can also be labeled as 'admin only' whereby only admins can view this information on the user.
Your team will be responsible for preparing a file that matches the format of our User Record Template. Before importing your user records to your community, the 360Alumni Data team will scrub the file.
First we run your records through an email validation tool and provide you a list of invalid email addresses. To protect our reputation as a trusted sender, we do not import invalid email addresses.
Next, we perform a general scrub which includes normalizing data (for fields such as state and programs participated in) and fixing formatting issues. Common formatting issues include removing leading and trailing characters, removing special characters, removing obvious duplicates, and correcting phone number and date formats.
Finally, we will run all addresses through Google Maps API to obtain geo coordinates for your users so they can be represented on the map.
** There are a few additional fields and characteristics (not included within the import template) that we can import and associate to your user records. This includes our profile global libraries [Education, skills, industry, languages] along with 'opt out' to email preferences. These updates are applied after the import and can be instructed via excel to a member of the 360Alumni support staff.
Once the scrub has been done, your records will be imported. The process generally takes 4-5 business days.
A Plan Is Needed to Provide a Valuable Alumni Community: