As Hurricane Sandy pounds the eastern seaboard, many organizations are opting to send emergency texts in order to keep citizens out of harm's way.
Sending text messages can be the best method of communication during natural disasters for a number of reasons. First, as this blog has mentioned in the past, texting is an effective way to reach a large number of people in a short amount of time. Text messages can transcend device and carrier because every phone these days contains the SMS application.
Moreover, texting becomes increasingly valuable during events where there is a high likelihood of a power failure. Traditional communication methods – landline phone calls and emails to name a few – are typically reliant on electricity. If the power goes out, connecting via a desktop computer is no longer an option. Even laptops will be of little help if the internet goes out. Phone lines traditionally fail early on in massive storms, making phone calls an imperfect option.
In fact, all forms of voice communication – even calls made via mobile phones – aren't practical if the receiving party is in an emergency situation. However, receiving a text is quick, easy and provides valuable information designed to help people in need.
The Federal Communications Commission is on board with emergency texting and instructs relief organizations to use SMS messaging to reach individuals in danger zones.
"Authorized national, state or local government officials send alerts regarding public safety emergencies, such as a tornado or a terrorist threat to CMAS," the FCC site says.
Disaster crews would be wise to invest in SMS services so they can reach anyone in danger in a short amount of time. Texting during these events can keep people out of harm's way and save lives. Swift SMS Gateway offers the tools any organization needs to launch effective text alert programs.
As this blog has previously mentioned, a number of medical professionals are using text message alerts to communicate with patients and remind them to take their medication. This type of service is especially useful for those with diabetes, due to their strict medication schedules and regimens.
According to an article from the local Chicago CBS affiliate, doctors at the University of Chicago Medical Center are texting diabetes patients to keep them on track and remind them to take their medicine. Dr. Shantanu Nundy told the news source that his work doesn't stop there however, and that he is using texting to communicate all kinds of valuable information with his patients.
"Some of them are simple reminders, like 'It's 8 o'clock, time to take your medication,'" Nundy said. "Other ones are sort of weekly messages about, 'Here are the types of foods to eat, or not to eat,' and then some of them are questions."
Texting is a valuable communication method because it can reach a large group of people in such a short amount of time. Texts don't have to be long to relay crucial information, so recipients can read them, process what they are being told and go about their day, all in a matter of seconds.
Those tasked with servicing large groups of people such as doctors and social workers typically share the same problem – they only have so many hours in the day to help everyone. Using SMS services to communicate with a large group at once can go a long way in mitigating those challenges.
Swift SMS Gateway offers the tools organizations need to conduct effective text messages and launch successful SMS campaigns.
One of the more troubling effects of today's uncertain economy is the lack of resources small business owners and entrepreneurs have to succeed in their business ventures. The inability to save and spend on necessary expenditures is hurting today's budding executive, but one individual is trying to change this and is using SMS messaging to help her cause.
Dina Pomeranz, an Entrepreneurial Management professor at Harvard Business School, has launched a program to help young professionals trying to start their own business set up a savings program. In a difficult economy, this is designed to give entrepreneurs a crutch to lean on should we experience another downturn, thus alleviating the dangers of losing the business.
The program was run to research the effects of peer pressure and outside influencers on saving. When participants met their savings goals for a month, they would receive a text congratulating them on doing so. If they failed to meet their goals, they would receive a message scolding them.
Pomeranz told the Harvard Business School's online publication Working Knowledge that the results found more people receiving constant notifications regarding their savings were successful in their efforts.
"It could be that text feedback or getting a message that cheers you on saying 'Yeah, I did it and I can do it again!' is enough to encourage people to make a deposit," she said.
Pomeranz's system was simple, but extremely effective. By sending information to a group of people to update them on their respective goal-reaching statuses, she inspired hard work and discipline. This showcases the power of text messages and why organizations that implement SMS services can make a significant impact in their industry or community.
Swift SMS Gateway offers the tools companies need to launch effective text messaging campaigns.
Traditionally, text alert programs have been designed to reach teens and young adults because, quite frankly, they use mobile devices the most. However, as we reported in this blog, mobile usage is growing among older demographics, so now organizations are launching SMS services catered towards a more diverse range of age groups.
According to an article from the local ABC affiliate, the Lincoln Public School system in Lincoln, Nebraska, is implementing a service that will text students' parents in the event of an emergency or important news announcement. This stems from a shooting that took place last week across the street from a local school. Parents who picked their kids up at the end of the day were shocked to discover that an event of that magnitude had taken place so close to the school and many were outraged that no one had bothered to inform them.
That's why the school is launching a service that sends text messages to parents instead of an email or a phone call. When interviewed by the news source, parent Amanda Brick expressed satisfaction in the decision because texting reaches the most amount of people in the shortest amount of time.
"There are people out there that don't have voicemails of answering machines and a lot of times, it's easier if you're at work to check a text message than it is to answer your phone," Brick said. "So I think it's a good thing for a lot of parents."
The school had originally made phone calls to parents, but as adults increasingly adopt texting as their preferred communication method, SMS messages make the most sense. Organizations should consider the fact that texts can be received by anyone at any time when orchestrating alert services. Swift SMS Gateway can offer the tools needed to launch successful text alerts campaigns.