Catalist, a private information firm founded by veteran Democratic strategist Harold Ickes, is providing the raw data. The firm has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to add demographic and commercial data to entries for each voter, often purchasing the information from information vendors.
In Michigan, EMILY's List asked Garin Hart Yang, a Democratic polling firm, to survey more than 12,000 Michigan voters with an in-depth battery of lifestyle and issue questions. From the massive poll, EMILY's List and Garin Hart Yang were able to profile distinct clusters of voters. These groups were then given names like Educated Postgraduate Democrats or Downscale Union Independents. Each cluster was scored for how likely it'd support Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, their affinity toward the Democratic Party and the likelihood they will vote.