Emergency Notification Systems and Crisis Communication – Blog

YMCAs Tap into Cell Phones for Instant Member Communication

Omnilert By Omnilert

Using RainedOut to inform members of closings, cancellations and urgent announcements

LEESBURG, Va.

Omnilert®, LLC, maker of RainedOut, the first text message service for sports leagues and groups, today announced that YMCA organizations across America are using RainedOut to inform members and staff of closings, cancellations and other urgent announcements.

YMCA’s that use the RainedOut group text messaging service include: Border View YMCA, Chester Family YMCA, CUYMCA, Greenwood Family YMCA, Henderon County Family YMCA, Peninsula Family YMCA, Summerville Family YMCA, Tri-County YMCA, YMCA of Columbia, YMCA of Harrison County, YMCA of Talbot County, and others.

Ms. Sondi Creglow is the Sports Director at Greenwood Family YMCA and said, “It is easy for anyone to register and since we do not have to approve anyone unlike our previous system, the participants can control their own account. It is easy and quick to post cancellations or changes. We use it for rain delays and cancellations, practice changes, field changes, and other updates.

“The players and parents like that it’s a text message. They don’t have to be by a computer to get it. Most of them have their cell phones with them, so it’s a lot quicker and easier for them to receive the information.

“When we were trying to find a replacement to our previous system, everybody that used RainedOut.com said this is the best system they had seen. And now that we are using it, we recommend it to other people.”

According to Nielsen, at the end of the fourth quarter there were over 232 million SMS users in the U.S. David Gill, Senior Director, Mobile Media at the Nielsen Company said, “With around 83% of mobile subscribers using SMS, texting represents the most common data activity amongst mobile phone users.

“Nielsen has seen consistent quarter over quarter growth in both the number of people participating in text messages and the average number of transactions per person. People are getting more engaged with this medium, not less. SMS is proving to be a legitimate media vehicle for advertisers to reach a desired audience and there is no question that text campaigns should be considered as part of any cross channel media buy on mobile.”

Walter Pauly of YMCA of Harrison County Sports said, “Saturday April 3, 2010 was to be our opening day for YMCA of Harrison County soccer. We have 29 teams and nearly 390 kids participating. The forecast was not promising. Rain, then thunder rolled in about 20 minutes prior to the start of the matches. I made the decision to cancel about 5 minutes later. The calls tied up the YMCA phones all morning.

“There had to be a better way. I looked on the Internet and came across RainedOut.com. I registered and informed the parents of soccer to do the same. The very next Friday we made the last minute decision to cancel due to severe weather. I made the call. Within minutes the system was working. RainedOut worked like a charm.”

About RainedOut
Established in 2004 and used by 1,000s of organizations, RainedOut is the first text message service for sports leagues and groups. This free sponsor-supported service enables non-technical people to administer and send custom or predefined messages instantly to the entire league for improved communication. It is used to cancel games, give directions, recruit volunteers, and much more. As a Web-based service, messages can initiate from a net-connected PC or from the field using a net-connected cell phone. Through one simple interface, RainedOut instantly and simultaneously broadcasts messages to subscribers’ mobile phones (via SMS text message) and e-mail accounts, and to the leagues’ own Web pages, RainedOut Page, Facebook Page, and Twitter Account. To learn more, visit http://www.RainedOut.com.

About Omnilert
Omnilert, LLC is the leading provider of unified mass notification systems for better business continuity, emergency management, and routine communication. The easy-to-use, self-service, Web-based system enables a single person to communicate timely information to thousands of people anywhere, anytime, on any device or service. The award-winning company's 3,000 clients include the U.S. Army, GE, Harvard University, Boeing, American Red Cross, UNICEF, sanofi-aventis, and the National Institutes of Health. Omnilert solutions are sold under the brand names e2Campus, Amerilert, and RainedOut. The privately held company is headquartered in Leesburg, Va., and at http://www.omnilert.com online.



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