From the first very first smoke signals created by prehistoric men to the 9-1-1 phone system, the emergency communication industry has vastly matured throughout the ages. Now, in 2017, we're at the peak of the information age. You can access nearly any news, from virtually anywhere in the world, any time. Amber alerts, text message notifications, and phone recordings can inform the masses, instantly, of any crisis. Whether it's to let us know about a school cancellation or a natural disaster, this is the current state of emergency alerts.
How Do Emergency Mass Notification Systems Work?
The need for the ability to send out crisis alerts is steadily increasing. One of the latest trends emerging is the high-volume use of mass notification systems (MNS) across multiple industries. So, how does this kind of system work?
In a nutshell, an MNS sends a one-way message to employees, subscribers, or the public regardingan emergency in real-time by way of telephone, text message, email, television, or radio. These systems make it easy for municipalities, companies, and individuals to let their people know that something is outside of the norm. Where the average response time for the police is 11 minutes, a mass notification system can be sent instantly in a safe, discreet way.
Emergency alerts are still sent out via broadcast television and radio, and phone calls are still used. Today, though, when 77% of people own a smartphone, the trends in technology tell us that it's time to start taking a closer look at email and text message alerts.
Why Are Mass Notifications a Critical Part of Society Today?
When you look at what's going on in the world, it's no wonder legislation is mandating mass notifications and emergency alerts for more than just natural disasters. Take a look at these industry facts and statistics about emergency alerts:[click to continue...]
Life is tough for the owners of nonprofits. There is always worry, fear, and questions - persistent questions. Can we get enough donations? Are we running our programs correctly? Why aren't we more prominent in the community?
It's always a struggle to raise awareness about your nonprofit. Even if you're doing great work in the community, it may be tough to show that to the rest of the world.
So if you're running a nonprofit and struggling to raise awareness about your business, mission, and cause, we've put together a list of the 6 ways that you can increase awareness about your nonprofit business, and enjoy the benefits of an enhanced community profile.
1. Make Use of Social Media
Social media is one of the single most powerful tools available to any company - and that includes the nonprofit community. Approximately 2.8 billion people use social media every day - up 21% from 2015, and 83% of all Americans have at least one social media account.
Do you have an old Twitter account that's collecting dust? A Facebook page that hasn't been updated in two years? Now is the time to make use of these pre-existing pages, and to get active on social media.
The best part about being active on social media is that it doesn't take a huge time commitment, as you don't have to create too much original content. You can post about what's going on in your organization, as well as share useful and interesting content with your subscribers.
For example, if you run a nonprofit based on counseling abused women, you could share some shocking statistics about domestic violence, or find some articles that discuss the impact of domestic violence on children. No matter your area of specialization, you're sure to find some great stuff to share that can engage your social media followers.
2. Leverage Your Website With Great Content
If you are a nonprofit organization, you have a website - that's a given. But are you using it to its full ability? If you're not hosting a blog or posting great content on your website, you're wasting one of the best platforms you have for raising awareness and growing your brand.
Creating great original content for your nonprofit website is a fantastic idea - by writing about things that are in your area of expertise, you can continue to promote your nonprofit as an expert in the field of its specialization, which helps raise awareness about your mission and your brand.
Content creation also allows you to increase your SEO profile, generate more traffic, and get around ad-blockers, among other benefits. Also, the content that you create on your website can be cross-posted on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, further promoting awareness of your nonprofit.[click to continue...]
Fall 2017 Update: We have added a few suggestions to help celebrate the change of seaons at your local farmers market.
Are you interested in running a farmers market? Farmers markets are awesome ways to help the community connect, provide people with high-quality local food, and have quite a bit of fun while doing so!
Running a successful farmers market isn't easy. It's a lot of work - and though the rewards are great, you should know some of the basic rules about running a successful farmers market before you get started.
We here at DialMyCalls have compiled a quick list of 5 tips that will help you organize, run, and manage a successful farmers market! Whether you're a market manager, or just interested in farmers markets, read on, and learn about these secrets to success!
1. Coordinate With Local Farmers, Consumers, and the Community
This is the first - and most important - step to running a successful farmers market. You need to balance the goals, objectives, and needs of each group to ensure that each one is satisfied.
- Farmers - It's important to choose a time and a season that works well for local farmers, and will allow them to sell their food to consumers for a long period of time, and at peak freshness. You also need to choose a time for the farmers market that fits their busy schedule.
- Consumers - Consumers will want a wide variety of locally grown, fresh foods, a diverse selection of goods, and prices that are reasonable.
- Community - The community at-large should be involved with the process of planning a farmers market. The input of community leaders, town officials, and committees should be taken into account when planning a farmers market, to ensure maximum positive effects on the community.
By balancing these 3 factors, you can be sure that your farmers market will succeed![click to continue...]
Utility companies are, traditionally, in a tough spot when it comes to customer satisfaction. Though strides have been made in recent years, utility companies suffer from some of the lowest overall customer satisfaction rates - placing behind industries such as airline companies and auto insurance companies. Common complaints include difficulty paying bills, late technician appointments (or no-shows), and poor overall customer service.
To continue to compete in the competitive, low-margin landscape of utilities such as gas and power, it's important for utility companies to take the proper steps to increase customer satisfaction - and make the monthly payment of utility bills more than just a boring, unsatisfying chore.
Here are a few ways that utility companies can increase customer satisfaction - and get a leg up on the competition.
1. Offer Online Bill Payments and Paperless Billing
In our modern, digital world, customers have a certain set of expectations. One of these expectations is that it will be possible to set up online, paperless billing - or at the very least, pay a bill online with a credit card or a bank withdrawal.
Fewer people than ever want to pay for their utility services with a check, or by mail. Today's consumers have the option of buying almost everything online - and utilities should be no different.
Because of this, your company should take steps to offer online bill payments and paperless billing, at the very least. Other things you should consider including on your website is a usage monitoring system - so that customers can see how much they owe before they have to pay - and options like autopay.
Offering these services makes it easier for customers to pay. This reduces the time they have to spend doing things like mailing bills and writing checks - and increases their customer satisfaction. Even if they choose not to use your online payment services, it's wise to provide them with the option to do so.
2. Ask for Customer Feedback
Do you really want to know how you can improve? You could implement a system to allow you to gather honest feedback from your customers - even if you hear things that you'd prefer not to.
Creating an anonymous call line or feedback line is a great way to understand the way your customers perceive your company. Using DialMyCalls, your company can quickly set up an anonymous vanity number "hotline", where customers can call to give feedback about your services. You can also use advanced SMS text messaging from DialMyCalls to conduct text-based surveys, and get even more feedback from your customers.
Even if you have relatively good customer feedback and satisfaction rates, it's always valuable to gain a deeper insight into your customer's mindset, and attempt to elevate your standards and provide better service.
So consider using DialMyCalls for customer surveys - you're sure to discover valuable business insights that will help you improve the quality of your customer service.[click to continue...]
SMS marketing is incredibly powerful - especially with short code SMS marketing services from companies like DialMyCalls. Using DialMyCalls, your business can quickly send hundreds of custom-tailored SMS marketing messages directly to customers - providing you with an extremely valuable marketing tool.
It's been estimated that nearly 90% of SMS messages are read within three minutes of being received. When you compare this statistic to emails, which have only about a 25% open rate at best, it's easy to see the value of SMS marketing.
However, text message marketing isn't foolproof. It's easy to make the mistake of using this technology incorrectly. So, to help you market more effectively, we've put together a list of the most common SMS marketing mistakes - and how to avoid them.
1. Improper Call to Action (CTA)
The problem: The Call To Action (CTA) is the heart and soul of your SMS marketing strategy. This is the text that asks a customer to do something - come in for a discount on a meal, enjoy a half-price haircut, bring a guest to your gym for free, and so on.
The CTA is the most important part of your SMS message. Without a strong, obvious CTA, your customers won't understand what your marketing message is trying to say, which results in an ineffective campaign.
How to solve it: To solve this issue, it's best to follow CTA best practices. This article from Hubspot Academy is a great resource. Basically, you want to make your CTA:
There's more to it than that - so dig into the above article to learn more![click to continue...]
DialMyCalls offers a church calling service that is used by thousands of religious organizations all across the United States and Canada. Pastors, churches and religious organizations rely on our service to send out a automated updates and notifications to an entire congregation at once. Churches utilize our service to send out community event reminders, weekly church updates, prayer requests, fundraiser notifications, and much more. Let's take a quick look at how First United Methodist Church of Unadilla NY utilizes DialMyCalls:
Why Did 1st UMC of Unadilla Need a Church Calling Service?
Connect with the community for special events. First United Methodist Church of Unadilla, NY needed a church notification system capable of contacting 350-450 contacts at once.
Why Did 1st UMC of Unadilla Choose DialMyCalls?
"We were looking for a change in services due to an increase in price with the current solution and DialMyCalls had a good price and we decided to give it a try."
What Features Do 1st UMC of Unadilla Utilize?
First United Methodist Church of Unadilla, NY utilizes our phone polling feature to ask their congregation members questions via automated phone call -- keyed in responses are recorded into detailed call reports.[click to continue...]
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