In the beginning of the century, just 62 percent of Americans owned a cell phone. Fast forward to today and 95 percent own a cellphone and almost every owner is texting. Cell phone ownership and usage is nearly universal amongst all demographic groups with even those ages 65 and older beginning to find use in the devices.
We have hit the point where mass messages are more likely to be read immediately upon text message delivery versus when sent in traditional newsletters or emails. Studies indicate that anywhere between 95-98 percent of text messages are opened, as compared to 15% of emails.
Benefits of Mobile Texting in an Emergency
In an emergency, effective communication means simple communication. Simply put, in today’s society that means mobile texting. Below are a few key benefits that every CCR&Rs should know and share with their providers:
- In disaster situations, phone lines can become overloaded and Internet services can crash. However, communication through mobile texting may still be accessible. Text messages are often sent through their own delivery channel that does not get overloaded.
- Mass-mobile texting campaigns work by sending messages 5- or 6-digit codes, versus the typical 10-digit code (think standard phone numbers). These short codes are sent on different frequencies than standard text messages and have a higher priority for being sent.
- Short codes can also connect with any cell phone provider to ensure messages are sent; this makes it incredibly reliable during emergencies.
- Texting allows CCR&Rs a means to assess impact, closures and damages to child care programs in the event of an emergency.
- Texting also gives providers a way to quickly let parents and caregivers know that their child is safe, putting families at ease.
Benefits of Mobile Texting for Marketing and Relationship-Building
Texting is a proven and effective tool for communicating important information in real time. Additionally, many view texting as a noninvasive form of communication since it is easy to check a text message at virtually any moment. People use text messages to send and receive quick “bits” of information versus emails which typically require more time to type and read.
More and more organizations are using texting to engage their audiences; CCR&Rs can also take advantage of this technology to build relationships with the providers and parents they serve. CCR&Rs can use texting to engage providers and alert them to upcoming training opportunities. They can also use texting to ensure parents are aware of their services and to provide parents with important information regarding early childhood development.
Providers can also use texting to send parents routine reminders, such as tuition payment dates, field trips, early closings, special events. Additionally, they can use texting During required monthly drills, as a way of documenting and testing the system for licensure compliance.
How It Works
Child Care Aware® of America (CCAoA) has partnered with Compliant Campaign to offer a reliable platform for CCR&Rs to communicate to providers and for child care providers to communicate to their parents and staff members.
Once CCR&Rs or providers creates an account, they claim a unique code associated with a 5-digit number and keyword of their choice. Parents and caregivers who want to receive messages from their providers, simply text the 5-digit number with the code as a message. That’s all it takes!