The company blog
Keep up to date with current news and highlights from the SMS industry

Don’t forget to vote – does SMS present an opportunity to increase voting uptake?

Can SMS increase voting uptake?Voting for the 2015 UK General Election is set to take place on the 7th of May, but there still seems to be some confusion around the deadline for voting and being registered in order to vote. The Electoral Commission has now launched a campaign to quash some misconceptions following a YouGov survey that found:

21% of people who rent privately believe they’re automatically registered to vote if they pay council tax
40% of those surveyed think that it is not possible to register to vote online
69% do not know when the deadline to register to vote is, with 13% thinking its already too late to register

For the first time in election history its watchdog will use mobile advertising to target young people on EE, O2 and Vodafone networks. They will also be set to receive SMS/MMS messages encouraging them to register to vote in the run-up to May.

According to Parliament, in the 2010 election the turnout was 65.1% but what about the other 35%?

Is text messaging the answer to missed votes?

A study in the American Journal of Political Science found that sending an SMS reminder to registered voters increased participation by 3%.

With our mobile phones being such a fundamental part of our everyday lives, it seems only natural to deliver important messages direct to voters’ phones. By sending a text message prompt to voters who have already registered to vote, the likelihood for increased uptake seems likely.

Esendex will be Hack 24’s headline sponsor

Esendex sponsor Hack 24

After the huge success of coding events such as Hack Manchester, Nottingham finally has its very own coding event – Hack 24. We’re excited to announce that we’ll be the headline sponsor and we’ll be setting a challenge for coders to get stuck into on the day!

Hack 24 is a 24 hour hackathon hosted by Tech Nottingham on the 2nd and 3rd of May. Over the course of 24 hours (whilst battling through an all-nighter) the teams will be competing to create the best workable product.

It’s free to enter so if you would like to get involved just click here to register. We hope to see you there!

Don’t keep your stakeholders in the dark!

Solar eclipse - don't keep your stakeholders in the dark
A solar eclipse happens when the moon orbits between the earth and sun, either fully or partially blocking the sun resulting in darkness. With this set to hit on Friday morning, we thought we would give you a few ways you can use text messages to make sure your customers and staff are never left in the dark.

No matter what industry you’re in, SMS is the perfect channel – not only is it instant and effective but it’s the UK’s most popular form of communication (Ofcom). With this in mind, here’s just a few ways your business can use text messaging to shed some light for your stakeholders:

– Make online shopping that little bit easier! Update your customers about their orders via SMS. Send dispatch alerts, expected delivery times and potential delays so that your customers are ‘in the know’.

– Let your development staff know immediately that your website server is down to minimise any potential disruption to your customers, sales and service level agreements.

– If there has been a change in staff shifts or a shift needs covering there is no need to make dozens if not hundreds of phone calls, just send a text message to your staff and start getting responses instantly.

– When appointments have been made weeks or even months in advance they are so easily forgotten. Send an appointment reminder via text to make sure they turn up or have the chance to reschedule.

For more insight and inspiration why not check out our industry specific white papers. We also hope you enjoy watching the solar eclipse on Friday!

National Apprenticeship Week at Esendex

Today marks the last day of National Apprenticeship Week so we thought we would celebrate the success of our apprenticeship programme in the Esendex office, whilst reflecting on massive benefits to be had from taking on apprentices.

Here’s how our Facilities Management apprentice, Sam Ruddy has settled into his apprenticeship:

Sam Ruddy, EsendexI originally started out doing A-levels, but a year in I found that it wasn’t for me. After this I went to college for a month but didn’t enjoy it – this was when I found Esendex! I wanted to do an apprenticeship because it’s practical based, allowing me to gain valuable experience in an area that I’ve never worked in before – it was the right choice for me.

I couldn’t be happier that I chose an apprenticeship at Esendex, it’s a great way to earn while you learn, whilst getting hands on experience in a challenging but fun working environment.

Our Information Security and Compliance Administrator originally began as a Business Administration apprentice – here’s what she had to say about
her experience:

I did an apprenticeship in Business Administration but because I did my apprenticeship with Esendex, I was given the opportunity to work in different departments to gain a wealth of experience and knowledge. This meant that not only did I learn a lot about the business, but it gave me the chance to find the right career path for me.

When I completed my apprenticeship, Esendex went out of their way to give me an exciting job opportunity. I’m now an Information Security and Compliance Administrator, without my apprenticeship I wouldn’t have been given this opportunity.

If you’re looking to gain valuable work experience and learn new, transferable skills I would definitely recommend applying for an apprenticeship.

So if you’re considering taking on an apprentice here’s a few stats to help you make your mind up:

– 80% of companies who invest in apprentices noticed a significant increase in employee retention (Skills Training UK)
– 25% of consumers would pay more for goods and services offered by a business that employs apprentices (CEBR)
– 81% of companies say apprentices help boost the productivity of the whole company (Populus)
– 81% of consumers favour a company that takes on apprentices (Skills training UK)
– 71% of apprentices stay with the same employer (GOV UK)

Happy No Smoking Day!

No Smoking DayToday is No Smoking Day – over two-thirds of smokers say they want to stop but only a few actually manage to quit (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

Here at Esendex we thought we could help healthcare providers out there to think about their tobacco control campaigns from a slightly different angle.  We’ve suggested some ways to bust some of the common myths that exist around giving up the habit:

Weight gain – It is common but it isn’t inevitable, as long as people keep moving, make healthy food choices and eat healthy snacks it may never even be an issue. Visit Change4Life for inspiration to help people make smart lifestyle choices.

Anti-social – What with the indoor smoking ban, smoking has become an outcast to social situations, who wants to stand outside in the cold smoking a cigarette whilst your friends have all the fun inside?

Roll-ups aren’t as harmful – Roll-up’s may be even more harmful than cigarettes as they don’t have a filter!

I’ll get awful withdrawal symptoms – Whilst some smokers may just prefer to go cold turkey, others may be put off by this thought. GP’s and Stop Smoking Clinics are able to offer medicines and NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy) which can double the chances of successfully quitting.

I haven’t got time to go and see my GP - GP’s can provide support through a simple text message! According to The Guardian, sending a motivational text message to a smokers’ phone can help people to quit. Sending messages with encouragement up to ‘quit day’, help with cravings, and busting these myths can help double their chances!

Considering the overwhelming cost the effects of smoking has on the NHS and other healthcare providers, sending a simple and low cost text message seems a quick win to support those that are trying to give up.

For more inspiration on how healthcare providers can make use of SMS here’s our best practice healthcare whitepaper.

 

We’re sponsoring QCon London 2015

Esendex sponsor QCon LondonWe’re excited to announce that Esendex will be sponsoring QCon London on the 4th – 6th of March. QCon is one of the UK’s leading software conferences, attracting over 1,000 attendees from the software community with its focus of sharing knowledge and innovation.

At Esendex we’re proud to have talented developers who are passionate about what they do. They love any opportunity to share their ideas and knowledge as well as learn from the rest of the developer community – QCon London is the ideal place.

If you’re heading over to QCon London, come and check out our stand and have a chat with our friendly team (we might even give you some free swag)!

We’re sponsoring the Mobile Marketing Mixer Party at Mobile World Congress!

Esendex sponsor Mobile Marketing Mixer Party On the 2nd – 5th of March, the industry’s leading brands will be at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. We’re excited to announce that we’ll be there too!

Focused on the mobile communications revolution, this event allows industry leaders, visionaries and innovators to explore trends that will shape mobile in the years ahead.

We’ll be sponsoring the Mobile Marketing Mixer Party on Tuesday the 3rd of March. This Mobile World Congress shindig will be the ideal opportunity to bring together the best in the mobile business.

Not only this but we will also be attending Mobile World Congress over the four days so we can not only share inspiration and tips for all things mobile, but also learn from the leaders of the industry.

If you’re planning on going to Mobile World Congress, why not get in touch and we’ll send you a ticket for the Mobile Marketing Mixer Party. We’d love you to join us!

Top 5 ways to love your customers

Show your customers love with SMSValentine’s Day is tomorrow so there couldn’t be a better time to go that extra mile and show your customers some love! We’ve put together 5 different ways you can make your customers feel loved all year round:

Save the date - send reservation reminders via SMS straight to their phone. Whether it’s for a hotel, restaurant or a spa retreat, it’s quick, simple and cheap – your customers will also never miss a reservation again!

Value their voice - show your customers they matter to you with an
SMS survey. It’s a hassle-free way to get their feedback, helping you to continually improve your service.

In the know - your valued customers should be the first to know about any exciting business developments – by sending a simple text they can be! Notify your customers of any relevant new products or services.

It’s on us - everyone loves a treat! Deliver exclusive promotions or mobile coupons direct to their phone.

Simplicity is key - take the stress out of online shopping and keep your customers informed at every stage! Send dispatch alerts, expected delivery times and potential delays via SMS. Using two-way text messaging your customers can even change their delivery time to suit them.

We’re an accredited supplier on the G-Cloud 6 Framework!

G-Cloud 6 G-Cloud 5 Framework - HM Government In May last year, we were accredited as a supplier on the
G-Cloud 5 Framework. Here at Esendex we like to stay as up-to-date as possible, so we are continuing to have a G-Cloud presence on the latest iteration of the framework – G-Cloud 6.

Our business SMS services are available for public sector organisations in the “Software as a Service (SaaS)” online store.

G-Cloud is a digital marketplace for public sector organisations to purchase cloud-based services. It is the quickest and easiest way for them to procure their services and means they aren’t tied in to long contracts, whilst getting top quality services for lower prices.

Our business SMS services are ideal for communicating time-critical messages within the public sector, and after working first-hand with organisations like NHS Trusts and Councils, we’re experts in using SMS to improve efficiency.

For inspiration on how to use SMS in the public sector, here’s our best practice public sector white paper.

Could SMS save us from skin cancer?

SMS could help reduce skin cancerAlthough it doesn’t feel like it, summer is just a few months away. With this in mind, how can healthcare providers keep us safe in the sun?

New research by QUT, Cancer Council Queensland and University of Queensland suggests that sending a text could prevent skin cancer. Their 12-month trial, targeted at people aged between 18 and 42, found that SMS was a flexible and effective communication channel.

Within the study, text messages were sent to promote sun protection. This involved sending reminders to wear sunscreen and advice messages around limiting their time in the sun between 10am and 4am. Messages were also sent to encourage early detection by checking their skin for early signs.

The results from this trial were really encouraging – sun protection habits and self-examination had dramatically improved. The proportion of people that were now self-examining had increased from 37% to 63%.

Could SMS be the answer to reducing the amount of people diagnosed with skin cancer and to increasing early detection?