How can remote, under-served communities get reliable information? How can advocacy groups promote voter registration and COVID vaccinations? And build opt-in contact lists at the same time?
Provide free internet access
An innovative, new approach uses free internet access provided through taco trucks and other venues to connect with hard-to-reach communities. It's a win-win-win model.
1. Users get free internet access through WiFi hotspots by registering with their contact information.
2. Vendors, community service groups and partner are able to provide Wifi for free
3. Advocacy groups collect opt-in contact info and serve messages and surveys while people are online and contact them later when they are away from the hotspot by text or phone.
Cost effective list building
Each hotspot supports up to 40 simultaneous users and costs about $200/month which includes the cost of the Wifi router and cellular connectivity. This translates to 6 cents per user added to the opt-in contact list.
Better response rates
Hotspot users see messages just as TV viewers see ads in the middle of their favorite program. And there is no fast forward button. Advocacy groups can also present survey questionnaires through the Wifi hotspot which users have to complete before resuming their internet session. Ads can be precisely targeted based on the information collected from users when they first register on the hotspot - such as age, gender and zip code.
Free internet locations
Groups can deploy Wifi hotspots at any location within the T-Mobile coverage area. The routers are the size of a small pizza box and can run off a power outlet or from a car's cigarette lighter. Some of the locations currently being served include:
- Community Centers
- Outside homeless shelters
- Outside ethnic supermarkets
- Medical clinics with waiting lines
- Construction sites
Do the math
How much does it cost your campaign to contact someone -whether by post card, text message or an ad on Facebook? What is the response rate? How much does it cost to get a completed survey response? What does the recipient of your outreach get in return?
This free internet approach provides underserved communities with free Wifi - a service they need. In return recipients opt-in by registering for the service with their contact information. Ads and surveys delivered while they are online are watched. The contact lists built have long-term value and can be used to reach users later when they are away from the hotspot.