List Loading System

Below are instructions and tips on how to use the ThruTalk (Legacy) list upload system.

load a call listThe Load a Call List button will take you here:

Load a call list


  • Start by using "Choose File" to pick your file. 
    • It is best practice to start by adding the file.
    • The file cannot be more than 50k rows.
    • Files must be in CSV UTF-8 (.csv) format - not as tab-separated values, Excel, or other formats. The .csv format labeled "CSV Macintosh" in Excel and other programs will cause an error alert.
  • Select the Strategy Options.
    • Choose the Replacement Strategy (Play Order). 
      • Options: Replace, Run After, or Run Together.
    • Choose the List Strategy. 
  • Indicate the Caller ID Phone Number.
    • Must provide a full 10 digit caller ID number. If an incomplete number is sent in, we will use the last valid number.
    • The caller ID must be entered as 10 digits only, such as 9876543219. If it is entered in any other format, such as (987)-654-3219, the system will only process the first 10 characters. Making calls without a proper caller ID can have an effect on how many people answer a phone call from this number and may cause the number to be marked as spam
  • Indicate Timezone. 
    • Options: ET, CT, MT, PT. This indicates when your list should stop and start.
    • See this guide for more details on Calling Timezone Guides.
  • Map your list.
    • Select the types of data you have in your file.  There are 3 kinds of data to map
      • Required Fields
      • Standard Fields (optional)
      • Custom Fields (optional)
  • Click Process.

Note: If a call list is intended to be Multiple Attempt but is selected as Single Attempt with two or more "Daily Attempt Counts", the list will default to Single Attempt. Please refer to the picture below for an example.

single attempt list with multiple attempts

Required Fields

These are the 4 fields that you are required to include in any calling list.

  • First Name - You'll need this so callers know how to address the person that is being called
  • Last Name - Same as first name
  • Phone Number - This is the number that we dial. These must be 10 numerical digits exactly and only using digits - no spaces, punctuation marks, or other characters.
  • Unique Identifier - this identifier will let you track who was called. (i.e. VAN ID or Action Kit ID). This can be their VAN ID or as simple as a 1,2,3,4.. sequence. However, each identifier must be unique per contact. 
    • Note: Script results are saved based on the Unique ID - if there are duplicates, the results will be saved over and lost.

Note: If you are missing any of these columns your list upload will be rejected. If data is missing from a row for any of these 4 options, the system will not function as expected. 

Standard Fields (optional)

Our standard field options cover the most common fields we see in calling lists beyond the required fields described above. These standard field options available for your lists are: 

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Party
  • Address Line 1
  • Address Line 2
  • Zip
  • Polling Location
  • Polling Info
  • Polling Address
  • Early Voting Location
  • Early Voting Info
  • Early Voting Address

Important Notes on Standard Fields:

  • Age, Gender, Party, and Full Address will be shown in the top left window for callers by default. If you do not have loaded data, those fields will be blank, but the header will still exist.
  • Polling and Early Voting Location are not included in the top left window for callers. You should display this information to callers directly in the script.

Custom Fields (optional)

In addition to the standard fields, custom fields can be included for any information that is beyond what the required and standard fields include (i.e. email addresses, past voting history, past donations). These custom fields can be used in your scripts to better target your message to your contacts and for variable script content. Check here for custom field character limits.

List Processing Steps

Once you have submitted the list, you'll receive a confirmation email that we have received the list, and ThruTalk (Legacy) staff will begin processing it. At the time of upload, your list will not increase the "Loaded" count on your dashboards. The "Loaded" count will increase a few minutes after we play that list for dialing.

  • For Replace lists, we will make those changes immediately and your "Loaded" count will increase a few minutes after we process the list. 
  • For Run After lists, we will play them at the time it is needed and your "Loaded" count will increase then. 

Rest assured that once you submit your list via the above client form, your list will be in the right place and ready for dials as soon as you have received the email shown below: 

list confirmation email

Any lists that are uploaded after local calling hours will not be processed until the following day at open. List upload confirmation e-mails will be sent out when they are processed the following day. Check here for the current Operating Hours.

If you do not receive your upload confirmation email 15 minutes after submission (or by the following day at open), please use Excel or another spreadsheet processor to do the following:

  1. Format all cells as text
  2. Copy and Paste your content back to those cells as "plain text"
  3. Save your file as type CSV UTF-8 (.csv)
  4. Re-submit your list file for upload and processing through our system. If CSV UTF-8 (.csv) is not available for a file type, please select file type CSV (Comma Delimited). Additionally, there are third-party software tools that can perform this operation to remove unexpected characters for you.
  5. If your list still fails, please reach out to

Please keep in mind these key need-to-knows:

  • We recommend using Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox to upload a call list. Some users experience issues mapping their lists while using Safari.
  • If you are syncing back to VAN, make sure your integration is set up before uploading your call list.
  • Please avoid using percentage signs (%), semicolons (;), pipe characters (|), or commas (,) in your list in any way. We have identified this as the cause of an issue where values appear to be separated incorrectly during your list mapping interaction. We suggest using colons, hyphens, or forward slashes in lieu of percentage signs, semicolons, pipes, or commas.
  • Phone numbers within your list must be entered as 10 numerical digits exactly and only using digits - no spaces, punctuation marks, or other characters.
  • After clicking the "Process" button below your list mapping interface, a blue banner alert that says "Call List Queued" should appear to indicate that your file and list requirements have been received.
  • After submitting a list, all list options will return to the default values. For example, if you selected "run after" for your previous submission, the interface will show the default selection "Replace" and the caller ID field will be empty after clicking the "Process" button. If you are submitting multiple lists in a row, make sure to re-select the correct options for each list.
  • For more best practices, check out our guide on Best Practices for List Loading.

We have simplified call lists in our new calling tool, NewTalk. Sign up for a demo here!