If you’re new to Netroots Nation, you can get a sense of what the event looks like by checking out our schedule overview. Below you can view panels, training sessions, keynotes and other content as sessions and speakers are confirmed. You also view a PDF of our printed program here.

If you’re looking specifically for the schedule grid, please click this link to view it.

Highlights for Netroots Nation 2014 include:

  • A keynote featuring Sen. Elizabeth Warren (and more speakers to be announced soon)
  • 80 panels and 40 hands-on training sessions
  • A progressive film Screening Series
  • An Ignite themed keynote, featuring fast-paced talks from movement leaders
  • A kickoff party sponsored by the Michigan Senate Democrats and the DLCC
  • A closing night party sponsored by Alliance for American Manufacturing
  • A special Tech Tools Shootout and reception sponsored by Google, New Media Ventures and Netroots Nation
  • Annual events including our pub quiz, comedy show and candidate reception and much more!

Order by:

Be your own megaphone: Tips for putting your cause or organization in the spotlight

Organizations and activists often overlook high-value, low-cost ways to place their work before interested audiences. From personalized outreach to submitting guest pieces at niche sites, there are cost-effective and efficient ways to earn your work the attention it deserves. This training will provide tips, tricks and alternatives to mass dissemination of one-size-fits-all email blasts to put your work before audiences that are actively seeking the latest news from organizations and causes like yours.

Trainers: Chris Cassidy

Beyond Excel: How to analyze your data in SQL

Many analysts are able to force Excel into doing the things they need. But once the data gets big enough, their VLOOKUPs and pivot tables break Excel, or force them to wait minutes to get data that should only take seconds. Learning how to utilize SQL can be daunting. Attendees will get hands-on experience in learning how to import their data, analyze it in ways that Excel makes painful and get back useable results.

Starting in mid-June you’ll be able to find materials for this session here: http://nn14.yahel.com/

Trainers: Yahel Carmon

Change culture, change the world: An introduction to pop culture strategy for social movements

From the Civil Rights era to the marriage equality and immigrant rights movements, forward-thinking social justice leaders, artists and advocates have designed and deployed culture change and pop culture intervention strategy to shift cultural narratives, upend long-held personal beliefs, galvanize unlikely allies and spark widespread public support for under-represented issues. While many agree that well-conceived cultural change and pop culture intervention strategies can dramatically accelerate the pace of social change, the progressive community has only just begun to formally map the theory, methods and creative practices that make these strategies effective. In this deep-dive workshop, participants will be guided through a hands-on exploration of the process of planning a long-term (pop) culture change strategy designed to bring progressive issues to the center of mainstream conversation.

Trainers: Bridgit Antoinette Evans

Click here! How to write advocacy emails that work

Tired of writing emails with good open rates but low clickthrough and action rates? The problem may lie in your presentation. Learn how to structure and write your emails to help create reader engagement and organizational identification. We’ll cover building a theory of change, creating a grabby lede, making a compelling ask and creating a long-term organizational narrative. This training is ideal for anyone starting an organizational email stream or looking to improve email performance.

Trainers: Elena Perez

Digital campaigns on a budget

How do you run a digital campaign on a budget? There are many things an organizer can do to affect change without a large budget—or even one at all. By approaching the issue through the lens of an organizer, anyone can run an effective digital campaign. Attendees will learn about past campaigns that have worked and what tools they can use to build a narrative and make change happen.

Trainers: Beth Becker, Asher Huey

Engaging and Growing Your Supporter Base with Google Tools

Whether your goal is to reach new supporters or deepen existing connections, there are a variety of digital tools and platforms to take your outreach to the next level. This training covers how products like Google+, YouTube, and Hangouts can be used to communicate your message, engage in dialogue with stakeholders, and broaden your reach. Participants will learn how to
make the most of live events by streaming them and allowing remote viewers to participate online, embedding calls-to-action within YouTube videos, and more.

Field-tested best practices for GOTV in 2014

Over the last few years, the use of GOTV best practices derived from academic and private research have become standard on many campaigns, but we’re learning more every cycle. In this presentation, we will review the principles behind GOTV best practices that allow campaigns to generate more ballots cast per voter contact. We’ll also cover a handful of the latest findings that came out of 2012, and then preview the upcoming research topics of the 2014 cycle.

Trainers: Josh Berezin

From clicktivist to canvasser: Online to offline mobilization

The netroots have been critical in turning a number of races from unlikely to viable, proving that sometimes our best volunteers are behind a computer screen. This session presents two successful case studies of online organizations mobilizing their memberships into offline actions. We will identify strategy, tools and best practices for successful volunteer engagement.

Trainers: Kaili Lambe, Karli Wallace

Funding the projects you care about

Most activists have projects they would love to do — but can’t, since they still need to pay the rent. This training will focus on how regular people can find money to sustain worthwhile projects, large and small, through crowdfunding, grants, and other creative means. It’s specially geared toward people working as independent media workers, but would also benefit those working at small nonprofits and progressive groups.

Trainers: Caitlyn Adams, Sara Steffens

FunnyRapidResponse.Com: Making Hyper-Shareable Microsites That Change The Political Conversation Quick

Microsites – quick, simple novelty sites like EtchASketchRomney that often appear as near-immediate rapid response to something happening in the news.

They are increasingly a huge part of the online political conversation, whether it’s how organizations present their latest videos or how a sole activist decides to wreak havoc with a corporation or candidate for a day.These can be incredibly effective at capturing a news cycle – and incredibly cost-efficient, requiring minimal effort for maximum online reach. But they can also be an incredible headache if done wrong.

We’ll examine some of the best examples of sites that have done this right and wrong, and offer pointers to both organizations and individual activists on how they can turn around political-conversation-shifting microsites in no time flat, while making their effort worth it.

Trainers: Kelly Mears

Google Analytics: Using data to improve your website

Say goodbye to being overwhelmed by the information in Google Analytics. In this session, we’ll cover just the data points that are most applicable to your nonprofit’s website. We’ll discuss what each data point is actually telling us about the areas of our website that need improving. Armed with our new data know-how, we’ll walk through specific ideas you can use to start improving your own site. (And to keep all of us focused on the data that matters after the session ends, you’ll receive a link to a dashboard template that you can save and use in your own Google Analytics account.)

Trainers: Yesenia Sotelo

How to get media and breakthrough on your issue

The media landscape is changing dramatically and getting more crowded by the minute. How do we breakout, breakthrough and win in this competitive landscape? Creative integrated (earned, paid, social) campaigns can influence decision makers, persuade the public, provide legitimacy and be the difference between a winning campaign and a losing one. In this session you’ll hear from media and PR professionals about best practices and tips on how to make the most impact.

Trainers: Doug Gordon, Jennifer Lindenauer

How to organize kick-ass press events and get your campaign covered

Earned media can be one of the most important (free) resources on your campaign, especially when you are strapped for cash. Our exercise-based curriculum will help you learn hands-on how to plan and execute a great press event—and generate thousands of dollars in media for your campaign.

Trainers: Lacey Connelly, Laura Friedenbach

Influencing public policy in the digital age: Legal rules for using social media

Nonprofits are built on a foundation of relationships, and tools like Facebook and Twitter allow nonprofits to expand our relationships and our worlds. But new tools come with a tangled web of rules and regulations, and many nonprofits are hesitant about engaging in online advocacy. Can a c3 lose its tax status over a careless Tweet? What happens when a politician likes your organization’s Facebook page? This training will clarify the rules for using social media, blogs and email as part of your advocacy toolkit. Trainers will give concrete examples and invite the audience to discuss hypothetical situations to develop a deeper understanding of the rules that apply to online advocacy.

Trainers: Isaiah Castilla, Ben Wyskida

Issue Campaigns Aimed at Congress

The theory and practice of issue campaigns aimed at Congress can be complex. In this session, we’ll talk about the self interests of members of Congress and how media can affect the behavior of members. We’ll also cover messaging, tactics and timing so that your issue campaign will be as succesful as possible.

Trainers: Heather Booth, Bob Creamer

It's not Photoshop's fault that no one liked your infographic

Do you ever find yourself at a loss for how to make attractive visual content when you have to include your organization’s garishly colored logo? Have you ever spent hours trying to craft the perfect Facebook graphic and then your mom is the only person who shares it? Do you secretly wish you could make an infographic that looks decent enough for Upworthy to post? If you answered, ‘yes’ to one or more of those questions, then you need to be at this session. This training is for anyone looking to up their design game, make share-ier content and get a handle on tools for visual problem solving. We’ll focus on the bare-bones basics of good design and show you how to take your visual content to the next level by using design principals to break through frustrating roadblocks.

Trainers: Sarah Baker, Eric Ming

Level up: A graphic design primer

So you want to be a graphic designer? We’re surrounded by designers’ fingerprints on our phones, billboards, mailers, even the logos on our clothes. Where do you begin? Join this training as we go through the basics to kickstart your graphic design adventures, beginning with changing the way you look at the world in the first place. We’ll discuss the basics of color theory, fonts (what is kerning, anyway?), composition and more importantly, the best way to keep your skill set up with this ever-evolving art.

Trainers: Candice Dayoan, Chris McNeil

List building crash course: Avoiding the spam traps

Email is still king when it comes to driving in online revenue. That means building your email list is one of the most important things your organization or campaign does. This session will analyze the pros and cons of paid and non-paid acquisition and help you develop a road map to successfully develop a qualified list that actually delivers to in-boxes. We will teach you how to build a list successfully (even if it is from scratch) and how to continue to maintain its overall health (what to look for in your reports and what tests to run to check your list health). We also will cover how to optimize landing pages and asks, as well as techniques to employ when trying to engage your newest contacts.

Trainers: Taryn Rosenkranz

Make your data talk (and understand what it says)

Salesforce, Salsa, Mobile Commons, Blue State Digital, Blackbaud … the list goes on. Your organization has a plethora of tools to contact supporters and manage their communications, actions, and activities, but it all lives in different places. You have no way to match your donors to your activists and heavy social media users, much less do effective ad retargeting to your high dollar donors. In this session we’ll run through how a well designed data system should work and talk through what you can do to get there.

Trainers: Austen Levihn-Coon

Master Class: Action Network

The Master Class program is focused on the specific tools that organizers use every day, and helping intermediate users become efficient, effective power users.

Action Network is a mission-driven nonprofit organizing toolset by and for progressives. The toolset includes petitions, forms, fundraising, events, and a state-of-the-art mailer, along with unique ways to collaborate with allies. In this session – fit for new and advanced users alike – you’ll learn how to use our groups tool for federated organizing and tips for using our embeddable widgets to collaborate and blow up your actions. You’ll also be among the first to learn our new features, including our new full-layout widget.

Trainers: Robyn Swirling

Master Class: BSD Tools

The Master Class program is focused on the specific tools that organizers use every day, and helping intermediate users become efficient, effective power users.

Dozens of the most important and successful digital campaigns, from Senate campaigns to Presidentials, utilize the BSD Tools to help run their digital campaigns. Attendees will hear from a BSD staff member about the powerful features they might not know about that will maximize their ability to target, personalize, and execute the digital programs they want. This session will provide helpful tips on how to use BSD Tools like BSD employees use the BSD Tools. Guests will learn about powerful features such as personalization datasets, Twig, APIs, the Graph API, and more.

Trainers: Yahel Carmon, Seth Reznik

Master Class: Google AdWords & Analytics

The Master Class program is focused on the specific tools that organizers use every day, and helping intermediate users become efficient, effective power users.

Whether your goal is to get more website visitors or boost donations, Google AdWords is a great way to drive targeted traffic to your website and digital resources. This session will cover how to make the most of Google AdWords to grow your subscriber base. We’ll also focus on Google Analytics, which allows users to understand where your traffic is coming from and what users are doing on your website. Used in conjunction, these two tools give you unparalleled insight into and control over your digital presence.

Going beyond the dashboard and standard reports, this training will dive into advanced AdWords and Analytics strategies. In addition to identifying your visitor audience and acquisitions, we’ll focus on technical tools for understanding visitor behavior, enhancing conversion rates, and customizing reports via common code customizations, conversion tracking, and multi-channel funnels.

Master Class: NationBuilder

The Master Class program is focused on the specific tools that organizers use every day, and helping intermediate users become efficient, effective power users.

Having access to website building and online engagement tools, voter file and grassroots mobilization tools, and blast email, text, and social media communications all in one place means NationBuilder presents great organizers with endless possibilities to build communities better than ever before. During the NationBuilder Master Class we’ll cover some of the advanced organizing tactics and best practices we’ve seen in political movements around the world using NationBuilder, including:

  • Communications for 2014: building text keywords into your action pages, importing twitter accounts, and easily turning facebook fans into emailable records in your database.
  • Digital Field: finding the most influential people in a community through NationBuilder Match, mapping your online supporters and members, creating digital precinct captains, using surveys and petitions to enhance your voter data
  • Fundraising through Organizing: setting up a personal fundraising page, using recruiter links, showing results of campaigns online through leaderboards, making the ask on social media directly through your database
  • Leveraging NationBuilder’s App store: How tools like RallyBound, Action Sprout, Change.org, Telephone Town Hall Meeting, CallFire, and Crowdhall connect into NationBuilder

Trainers: Robin Alberts-Marigza, Michael Moschella

Master Class: NGP VAN

The Master Class program is focused on the specific tools that organizers use every day, and helping intermediate users become efficient, effective power users.

This Master Class focuses on harnessing the power of several new tools we’ve developed over the last several months that make an organizer’s workflow more efficient and help improve the quality of and access to data on our platforms. We’ll review the latest techniques on everything from more efficient list creation (our newest and more powerful version of Create a List), segmenting contact universes into Turf (changes to Turf cutter and Turf Management), as well as streamlined ways of quickly getting these universes into the hands of volunteers and activists (such as our improvements to the indispensable Virtual Phone Bank, including the new Open VPB, which configures a call list to be publicly available within seconds) and our widely-used MiniVAN mobile canvassing app for iOS and Android devices. We also cover how our products can be managed under a single, universal login (ActionID) and a brand new tool called VAN Relay, which improves the quality of data in volunteer, membership and organizing databases. In addition, we focus on high level administration of our integrated phone services and social organizing tool.

Trainers: Torvic Vardamis

Master Class: Salsa

The Master Class program is focused on the specific tools that organizers use every day, and helping intermediate users become efficient, effective power users.

Join this advanced Salsa session to learn how to supercharge your ongoing and end-of-year fundraising. We’ll cover maximizing your conversions with our QuickDonate tool and how to improve overall engagement with advanced donor targeting by combining advocacy and fundraising actions for increased impact. Then we’ll bring it all together with multivariate email testing to help you make data driven decisions you can feel confident about.

Trainers: Bryan Casler

Moving your audience in 140 characters

Learn how to create a powerful digital strategy on Twitter, including how to establish a strong organic presence and how to create a successful promoted presence.

Trainers: Ashley Ramirez

Online organizing: Moving up the ladder the right way

From Obama for America to small mayoral races, having an effective online to offline strategy has proven to be a winning strategy. Trainers will share engagement tactics that work to reduce the barrier to entry for new users and help existing supporters become more engaged. This training will offer tips and best practices for an effective social media and email strategy that encompasses the principles of empowerment, participation, force multiplication and relationship-based organizing. We’ll also talk about establishing consistency, effectively engaging with audiences, the key elements of a successful email program and effective reporting and analyzing systems for increasing digital ROI.

Trainers: Ashley Bryant, Martha Patzer

Power mapping and persuasion: The keys to building coalitions and making change

Movement building and making progressive change fundamentally begins with mapping key influencers, persuading people to join you and managing your database. Digital communication and CRMs make it easier than ever to leverage social networks to build coalitions, and an effective—yet often overlooked—tactic is to identify and persuade top social influencers. By targeting people with political-social influence, you’re able to leverage low-cost online/offline tactics and “social norms” to activate a community/electorate. Always remember: What inspires people to join you?

Trainers: Kate Maeder

Presence and authenticity: The key to being a media star

Media appearances are performances. To be a good performer, one needs tools and techniques. This session will teach the tools and techniques used by professional actors to create star presence. It will be an interactive master class as taught by Joel Silberman, New York theatrical director and media trainer to performers and successful progressive candidates.

Trainers: Joel Silberman

Ready, startup, change! Entrepreneurial mentalities for progressive change agents

You’ve got your cause or change-making organization and are ready to change the world. But changing the world takes money. Unfortunately the impact you have will be often be limited due to a lack of resources. How can you apply a entrepreneurial mindset and startup mentality to hit the ground running and enlist financial support for your work through social/cloud fundraising tools?

Trainers: Paula Brantner, Shireen Mitchell

Stories from the field: Lessons from the 2013 immigration reform battle

Despite the media declaring immigration reform dead last year, the power of personal stories has revived the fight again and again, from family members affected by immigration policies being featured on news programs to children of undocumented parents confronting Speaker John Boehner. People across the country fasted for days, even weeks, to urge Congress to move on immigration reform. Hear from organizers in the movement about how they organized to make these stories spread and how you can incorporate stories from the field into your own winning campaign strategies.

Trainers: Olivia Chow, Emilia Gutierrez

Story of self: Using your own stories to power your organizing

As many of us know, orrganizing is about relationships;  well, relationships and strategy. Using Marshall Ganz’s well-developed Public Narrative framework, we will use our time together to learn the best practices for mobilizing our communities to take action.  How do you move folks to action?  Come find out on Thursday 7/17 @ 4:30pm.

Trainers: Hope Wood Moore, Michelle Wright

Targeting without a model: Smart planning for local races

In this session you’ll learn how to target local races using basic data mining skills. You’ll learn how to extract data from a voterfile, find patterns in voter contact responses and extrapolate that information out to a set of voters that your campaign can persuade. After this session, you’ll be able to maximize your voter contact resources and put your campaign over the top.

Trainers: Matthew 'Mudcat' Arnold, Victoria Cepeida-Mojarro

The online laboratory: Perfecting your outreach through email testing

Every email list is different, so how do you know what messaging will motivate your supporters the most? What subject lines will grab their attention? Which email layout will get them to click through? Here’s the good news: the answers to those questions are a simple test away. In this session, attendees will learn the basics of email testing, including what defines effective testing, what tools they need to get started, testing best practices, how to determine if a test was statistically significant and how to apply testing results to refine successful email practices.

Trainers: Damien Shirley

Training for trainers: Principles of adult learning

Think of every training you’ve ever attended. What’s the difference between the ones that make you yawn and the ones that make you feel motivated and confident about applying new knowledge and skills to your work? Join this session to learn the science behind effective trainings, so you can apply it the next time you need to teach anything to anyone.

Trainers: Ashley Pinedo

Twitter Training for Campaigning: Strategies to Win and Build Community

Twitter is the platform of choice for political activists, reporters and candidates; a politically hyper-engaged audience who mold the conversation nationally. This session will guide you through advanced strategies for campaigns and nonprofits to educate the public, influence the media and win your election. We will discuss tactics to grow targeted audiences, turbo-boost messaging and engage users for collective action on your behalf. At all times, we will focus on winning strategies using case studies and solid measurement. Audience participation will be welcomed and encouraged.

Trainers: Kimberly 'Dr. Goddess' Ellis, Zach Green

Upworthy brainstorms how to fix your social content

You have social media problems; we have social media answers (hopefully.) We’ll spend the hour brainstorming answers to common social media questions, from content framing to Facebook management to engagement strategies. Everyone will help each other fix their social media conundrums.

Trainers: Joseph Lamour, Adam Mordecai

Using strategic communications to win on controversial issues

If you work on issues that spark public controversy and challenge deeply held convictions, strong controversy communications strategies should be a foundational part of your campaign toolkit. From immigration to religion to abortion, expertly navigating and influencing the public conversation can often be the key to success rather than fostering messy, low impact debates. In the field of controversy communications, engaging contentious public conversations are proactive strategies that can propel your campaigns. This session will explore the spectrum from preventing crisis to managing one. In addition, we’ll explore the infrastructure needed to create knowledge-driven strategies.

Trainers: Loretta Kane, Pablo Toledo

Using theories of change to campaign and win

We all campaign on the basis of theories about how change will happen, whether these are explicit or just our standard operating assumptions. This training will focus on how we make the implicit explicit so we can organize and campaign for change more effectively. Corelab will use its original research on theories of change in campaigns to stimulate discussion about what theories of change are, and what implications they have for how we campaign. Secondly, participants will make their own theories of change explicit by identifying assumptions and preconditions for change. Participants can work individually or with others to build a theory of change for a current or future campaign.

Trainers: May Miller-Dawkins

Using video to change hearts and minds

Well-produced video allows you to harness the power of visual storytelling and reach your audience in a deep and memorable way. It is now easier than ever to create video content, but even the most advanced cameras and software won’t produce compelling narratives all on their own. We’ll demonstrate the fundamentals of using visual storytelling in video production to empower you to tell more powerful, intimate stories that move your audience far more effectively than with just data and facts.

Trainers: Amy Hendrick, Jennifer Wynter-Philis

Vision, values, voice: Building powerful messages to win

If you’ve read anything on political messaging lately, you know you’re supposed to be talking about values and perfecting the art of storytelling. But what does that mean? This workshop provides concrete structures for building powerful and resilient values-based messages that will take on tough issues and cut through the communications clutter. Based on communications theory and research and the experience of advocates and activists around the country, our values-based approach will help communicators think through their messaging strategy, segment audiences and identify concise, effective language to move your issue forward.

Trainers: Julie Fisher-Rowe, Alan Jenkins

You have 30 minutes to respond online. Now what?

Twenty four hours a day, seven days a week. That’s the news cycle in the digital age. Given that, how do we handle rapid response in the digital world where yesterday’s news may have broken just today? We’ll talk about strategic planning, rapid response and memes, giving you the tools you need to be ready for anything that comes your way.

Trainers: Beth Becker, Scott Wooledge

You still can't make anything go viral—but good content can!

Upworthy’s annual training on how to make everything go viral* is back with new insights, strategies, test results and ideas to help your organization get attention to the things that matter most in your community. Come for the science; stay for the science. (*Tell your boss almost nothing goes viral no matter how clever he thinks his political ad is.)

Trainers: Joseph Lamour, Adam Mordecai

You're invited: The marriage of policy and organizing

Often, the policy world is disconnected from the work organizers do on the ground. Learn how communications teams can build the bridge between the two worlds, providing the solid resources advocates need and elevating issues to mainstream and online media—and how you can do it too! We’ll use our Healthy Young America campaign as an example of how to break down complicated policy like the ACA into a clear, understandable outreach and communications campaign, on the ground and online.

Trainers: Jessica Adair, Rae Roca-Pickett

You're not Elizabeth Warren but you can raise money! Fundraising targeting and tactics

So often we hear about these big-time progressive personalities breaking fundraising goals like it’s nothing. But for the rest of us, fundraising is daunting and sometimes intimidating. This session is tailored for down-ballot candidates and staffers looking for the skills to raise funds even without a high profile name or race.

Trainers: Andy Szekeres, Monique Teal

Netroots Nation 2015