Getting started with Group creation

Before sending texts or making calls in GetThru, you must first upload your list of contacts into a Group. Your file must be in .csv format to successfully upload it — .xls, .txt or any other format will fail.

Prefer a video? You can open our Groups video in our helpdesk, as a YouTube video, or download the file.


Before uploading

If you are creating a group from a CSV, before uploading your file to GetThru, open your file in Excel or another spreadsheet program. Once the file is open:

  • Check that all of your columns have headers. If they do not, add a row (if necessary) and input data into the headers. Files uploaded without headers will remove the first contact from that group.
  • Check that there is a column for first name, last name, and phone number. If any of the 3 required columns are missing, create columns in your file with those headers and input values into those cells. If a contact is missing any of the three required data points, the contact will not be included in the group.
    • For example, if your file is missing some or all of your first name data, you can add the word "friend" for those contacts. Then, when creating your ThruText script, you can use that field, and those contacts will be greeted as "friend" when you reference the contact's first name.
  • Remove any columns that you do not need for syncing or as custom fields in your calling or messaging scripts. For example, to sync back to VAN, admins must map VAN IDs.
  • Reduce the size of the file if it exceeds 50,000 rows. You can copy and paste the data into another file that you can upload as a separate group. You will be able to use multiple groups in a single ThruTalk or ThruText campaign.
  • To ensure high system performance, a new process is being implemented that will limit the number of allowed concurrent group uploads per account. Please check out our Groups Details guide for more information.

Removing unneeded columns and restricting the amount of contacts in the file reduces the overall size of the file. Click here to read more about group size

After you have checked the content of your file, be sure to save it as a CSV!

How to upload a group

To start, click "Create New Group" from the left-side bar or the "Upload New Group" button on the admin dashboard, which will take you to the Group Upload wizard.

Step 1: Name & Country

Give your group a name, pick the country of origin for your phone numbers, and then click the "Next" button.

Screenshot of the initial step in creating a group on GetThru. A white background displays a form with fields for group creation. The form is titled "Create a Group". The first form field is where the name of the group is input. Inside the 'Name' field, 'Test Group' is typed. Beneath, a dropdown menu allows selection of a country, currently displaying 'United States' as the available option.

Using a naming convention at group upload can save you time and effort during campaign creation.

Step 2: Upload CSV

Select the file you wish to upload by clicking "Add a CSV" to select a file from your computer or drag and drop a file into the upload box. Once you've added your file, you can see the number of rows or clear the file if you want to upload something different. Ensure the wizard has completed assessing the number of rows before clicking the "Next" button to move forward.

A screenshot illustrating the second step of group creation on GetThru. Black text on a white background is positioned above and within a rectangle composed of dark grey dots, delineating the drag-and-drop zone for a CSV file upload. A dark green solid rectangle draws attention to the emphasized text 'Drag and drop a csv file to upload group or Add a CSV' within the interface.

A screenshot illustrating the second step of group creation on GetThru after selecting a CSV file for upload. Black text on a white background is positioned above and within a rectangle composed of dark grey dots, indicating the file upload area. Inside the rectangle, a file name is displayed alongside a button reading 'Clear' in dark pink text on a white background. A dark green solid-lined rectangle emphasizes the 'Clear' button. Additionally, at the bottom of the image, another dark green solid-lined rectangle highlights the text 'CSV has 4 rows'.

You can use External Contact Lists if your GetThru account has a VAN integration set up. Read about managing your External Contact Lists or learn how to set up your account with a VAN Integration.

Step 3: Required Fields

Map your file with the three required fields: First Name, Last Name, and Phone Number.

All groups must have these columns, meaning any CSV you upload to create a group must also have values in these fields. 

Step 4: Custom Fields

Map any custom fields you would like associated with your group. GetThru will list all of the custom fields on your account. When you upload a CSV with custom fields, GetThru will "guess" which column in your CSV should be associated with which custom field, just like in Step 3.

If "Select {CustomField} column" is left as the selection for a Custom Field, as shown for the "City" and "County" fields below, your custom fields will not be mapped.

"A screenshot illustrating the fourth step of group creation in GetThru. Three drop-down menus labeled 'City', 'County', and 'Email' are visible, presented in black text against a white background. The 'City' and 'County' drop-downs remain unselected, showing prompts in dark grey text on a white background: 'Select City column' and 'Select County column', respectively. In the 'Email' drop-down at the bottom, the option 'email' is currently selected."

In the above image, the "Email" field is mapped.

NOTE - You must create your custom fields in your account before you can map them during the Group upload process. If the wizard skips from "Required Fields" to "Review," verify custom fields are created in your account.

If you have a VAN Integration for your account, you will also need to properly map your VAN IDs to ensure your data gets synced back. 


Again, if you think that GetThru guessed incorrectly, you can change the mapping using your CSV headers' pulldown menus under each custom field name. Selecting "Ignore" will skip that custom field and not map it. 

Screenshot demonstrating a custom field drop-down menu in the fourth step of group creation in GetThru. The menu displays white text on a dark grey background. The top option is 'Select VAN ID (Voter File) column' with a checkmark. Below are options to Ignore, First, Last, Phone, and Email. 'Ignore' is highlighted in white text with a solid dark magenta rounded rectangle, indicating it is the focused choice.

If you see custom headers listed that are no longer in use, you can archive custom fields to hide them from view and clean up clutter within your account.  

Step 5: Review & Create Group

Make sure everything looks good. You can return to any previous steps to make edits if you wish. Once you are satisfied that everything is set up the way you want, click "Create Group."

Your group will show a yellow dot as it is actively validating your phone numbers and uploading your list. The time this takes will vary depending on your group's size or the level of usage on the platform (e.g., the upload may take a bit longer during busy times in a campaign cycle, like in November or right before a primary in your state).

A green dot indicates an active group that is ready for use on a campaign. It is now ready to be used on a campaign!

A screenshot displaying the sixth and final step of group creation within GetThru. At the top, 'Review Group' is presented in black text on a white background. Below, six rectangular boxes comprised of dark grey dots contain black text on a white background, showcasing details such as the group name, country, number of rows, and column header selections for First Name, Last Name, and Phone. Underneath the boxes, a dark magenta button with white text reads 'Create Group'.

NOTE - A group upload should take less than 2 minutes to complete. If an upload is taking longer than that or numbers remain as "Unvalidated", please write to support at for assistance.