The Northmoor Community Association in Manchester offers free support and services to the area; known as the ‘heart of the community’ they bring together local residents in a welcoming space. At the Community Centre visitors can enjoy a freshly prepared meal, get support with benefits, gain access to online courses, join the Youth Can Do homework club or the Creative Connections arts and crafts group to name but a few.
The much-loved community centre has several different groups, projects and services which visitors can sign up to and register to hear more about. Northmoor found that many residents didn’t use email meaning that not everyone was receiving the important updates.
SMS was identified as a more suitable channel as nearly all residents had a mobile phone. Northmoor shares updates via SMS and is able to use the attachment tool to include posters. This feature has been incredibly helpful to the team, enabling them to include more details.
“People get so many emails and don’t read them as often, everyone reads texts so it’s a no brainer. It’s so quick to use and the fact you can have so many different groups is so useful and perfect for what we need.” Fiona Gallagher, Northmoor Community Association
One of the most useful SMS use cases Northmoor have put in place is the course reminders and updates. They can now send text messages letting those who have enrolled in a class if a lesson has been cancelled or moved. SMS has also helped reduce no-shows by sending reminder messages via the Messenger platform.
At Northmoor Community Association, an estimated 70% of their service users don’t use email on a regular basis. SMS has opened up a whole new group of people they are now in regular contact with.
Northmoor has also found that some of their contacts have been responding to their messages. As a result, they are considering making more of the automatic replies option and expanding their use of SMS even more.