How SMS can add real value in communities and municipalities

Sending SMS in communities and municipalities can improve the quality of life and the sense of community

SMS has many advantages as a communication medium, which are especially crucial when you want to reach many people with different preferences and desires at the same time. Therefore, SMS can also be used in communities and municipalities to improve the quality of life and foster community.

One popular way to do this is to offer an SMS citizen service. Citizens choose what information is relevant to them and are kept well informed. Not only does this increase satisfaction, but also the attendance-rate for events, for example, which in turn promotes a sense of community. Make sure that signing up for your service SMS is transparent and easy, and that unsubscribing from certain or all info SMS is possible at any time. This will increase satisfaction with your service and also save you money.

If you are wondering which use case is particularly suitable for your SMS citizen service, we would like to give you some ideas with this blog post.

Reminder of garbage collection dates

Maybe it has happened to you yourself: you come home and realize the trash was picked up and you forgot? Many municipalities offer citizens to send service text messages reminding them to put out a certain garbage container. What sounds trivial here is actually one of the most common SMS services offered by municipalities and local authorities. The reminder service is popular among citizens, after all, it is simple and effective. Fortunately, trash pickup reminders are particularly easy to automate because the messages can be easily pre-scheduled well in advance. Note, however, that it must be possible for recipients to unsubscribe from receiving the messages at any time.

Information on upcoming events

Show that life is worth living in your community by pointing out your events. In this way, you not only promote cultural life, but also a sense of community and an exchange with and among members of your community.

If you want to offer a very special service, you can also create different interest groups, which will then only be informed about very specific events, for example, kindergarten festivals and puppet shows or about concerts and flea markets. Many communities also like to send out a link to the current event overview at the beginning of the month. Keep in mind, however, that smartphone-ownership among people over 65 is significantly lower than in younger age groups and that they may therefore have difficulty opening the link.

Information on current restrictions

Due to major construction sites, accidents, demos or sporting events, parts of the infrastructure may be restricted or not usable at all. To save your citizens stress and hassle, you can also inform them of such plans or incidents via SMS. Of course, good timing is especially important here. Inform about planned restrictions in time, about sudden restrictions immediately. Depending on the type, duration and extent of the restrictions, it may be useful to inform about them more than once. If there is a website where the current status is displayed, you can also include a link to this page in your info SMS.

The sending of SMS in communities should be customizable

Current COVID regulations or test results.

Since the start of the Corona pandemic, we know how difficult it can be for the public to keep track of current regulations. Offer a text messaging service that keeps interested parties informed of changes, or set up a text messaging hotline where questions can be submitted and answered within 24 hours, for example. For this, we strongly recommend that you book your own inbound number. This is also particularly practical if your municipality or community welcomes many tourists who may have questions about regulations during their stay.

The advantage: In case of spontaneous changes due to increasing numbers of cases or other short-term measures, you have an effective communication channel at your disposal. Just make sure that your recipients have consented to receive these updates.

Does your community offer COVID testing? Read our case study on how Ammerland County was able to make its operations more effective by sending test results via SMS.

Alternative to telephone information services

SMS can make a significant contribution to making your services barrier-free. The example of an SMS hotline can be applied to many other areas where you offer your citizens a telephone hotline. This way, you ensure that people with limited hearing or speech can conveniently ask their questions via SMS. Do you have resources, such as videos that you’ve produced especially for them? Conveniently send links to the relevant information via SMS. Do you offer accessible events? Give citizens the opportunity to be informed about these separately via SMS as well!

SMS in communities and municipalities – an additional service that serves everyone

SMS provide you with a reliable and effective way of sending relevant information to interested citizens. The prerequisite is, of course, that they wish to receive these messages, i.e. that they have given their consen. It is best to let them choose which topics they would like to receive SMS on. A double opt-in creates additional security with regard to data protection. Providing information on how recipients can unsubscribe is also important.

Simple service information, such as reminders for garbage pickup or notices about restrictions, can help make life in your community more pleasant.

In addition, info SMS about events ensure that interested parties are always up to date and can participate in the social life of your community or municipality.

Last but not least, SMS can help to make information accessible without barriers, for example, if you offer an SMS hotline as an alternative to telephone consultations or information services.

Still have questions about how to use our products? Send us a message so we can work together to find out what you need.

All the best
Your sms77 team

Header picture by Trimlack via pixabay.com

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