Does My Municipality Have Enough Content to Communicate via a Notification System?
Let’s talk about the “what” of resident communication. What are the types of information that residents want to be notified or informed about from their local government? As municipalities explore ideas for their resident communication strategy, they may be curious if they have enough information to share via a notification system. There is a surprisingly large amount of topics to share with residents, regardless of the size of the municipality, such as:
Road closures/traffic alerts
Parks and recreational programs
Community center events
Ordinances (new and modifications)
Municipal office closure or modified hours
Hazardous, e-waste, recycling events
Community resources – food banks, substance abuse programs, etc.
Alerts, emergencies – of various types
Building your audience
Notification systems not only help with planned events and keeping the community on track with a shared calendar, but they are also the perfect tool to quickly alert residents of unplanned events and emergencies. Since Savvy Citizen is a comprehensive notification system that can handle all types of information, it enables municipalities to build a base of residents that are ready and eager for information when you want to reach them. Should an emergency unfortunately occur, the municipality already has resident subscribers in place to send the alert/warning and get the message out into the community.
Proactive notifications avoid repetitive calls to the office
Savvy Citizen clients know when it’s time to send out a routine notification to residents. Often, the municipal staff will receive a few calls to the office regarding the same topic. Instead of fielding additional phone calls all day, it’s best to be proactive and stay ahead of your residents by sending out a notification. One of the most frequently asked questions of municipal staff is whether garbage is delayed after a holiday. A proactive notification will remind everyone of the scheduled pickups and help avoid repetitive calls to the office.
Content suggestions if you need them
Savvy Citizen offers municipalities a list of content suggestions based on the season/time of the year. For example, prior to July 4th, Savvy Citizen has a notification pre-populated to advise residents that your offices are closed for the holiday. You can choose to review the content suggestions, modify them if necessary, and quickly send them to residents. All of the content suggestions are available on the municipality’s Savvy Citizen dashboard.
Automated weather and traffic alerts
Savvy Citizen enables municipalities to send out automated weather and traffic alerts to residents which keeps them safer and more informed of impacts to their lives. The system is fully integrated with the National Weather Service (NWS) alert system, and knows about weather that may impact your residents. Similarly, Savvy Citizen pulls traffic information (including congestion, accidents/incidents, construction) so that you can quickly and automatically relay this information to your resdients when they need it most. Both of these features are included in your subscription.
Increase traffic back to content on your municipal website
If you have content to highlight on your municipal website, a notification is a perfect way to let your residents know that the information is available for them to review. Municipal websites are a “must have”, but they are not often visited by residents on a frequent basis. Savvy Citizen enables you to put a web link in your notifications to residents that direct them back to your website. As an example, if you have recently updated an ordinance on burning, snow removal, or even pet leash laws, you can send out a quick notification to advise them of the new requirements. Your residents may never know about these new ordinances unless you give them a heads up that the website has been updated.
In conclusion, there is always something to communicate with your residents, no matter the size of your municipality. Residents that feel connected to their local government are more engaged, content and happy with their community. Savvy Citizen is a perfect way to keep your residents up-to-date with helpful information, events, alerts and more!