Campus Announcement Emergency Notification Platform offers colleges and universities the ability to send emergency notifications and campus alerts via four communication channels: sms text messaging, voice broadcasting, email messaging and desktop alerts.
THE BASICS
GET IN TOUCH

Click on a topic to view related questions and answers:


Setting Up Campus Announcement

Q: Does Campus Announcement require the installation of any hardware?
A: No. Campus Announcement does not require any hardware or installation process as it is accessed using the internet or by telephone.

Q: Does Campus Announcement require the installation of any software?
A: No. Campus Announcement does not require any software installation as it is accessed using the internet or by telephone.

Q: What equipment do I need to initiate a message broadcast?
A: Campus emergency alerts can be initiated in two ways: by telephone calling a toll-free number or through the internet.

Campus Announcement Accounts and Log-In

Q: How do administrators and public safety officials use Campus Announcement?
A: Campus Announcement is used to send a variety of messages including: campus and event cancellations, weather cancellations and delays, fund raising reminders, on‐campus violence or emergency alerts, rumor control and more.

Q: Can a college or university have multiple logins for various users?
A: Yes. Simply advise us of which personnel in your school you wish to have access and each individual will have their own unique username and password to login.

Q: Can there be permission rights for varying levels of access?
A: Yes. Varying levels of access can be set up so that certain users access is more restricted than others. For example – the Dean of Students or Chief of Police will need access to reach every contact in the school, but each professor can only access data for their classes. This is a straightforward with Campus Announcement.

Creating Contact Lists

Q: Can I have more than one contact method per student?
A: Yes. Each student can have an unlimited number of contact methods (such as cell phone, dorm room phone, email address, desktop alert computer).

Q: Can I segment my student list to send a message to a sub-group of students?
A: Yes. Campus Announcement allows you to create and save multiple lists such as a master emergency list, sports team lists, Club Lists, etc. Furthermore, when setting up a broadcast you can also filter a list “on the fly.”

Campus Announcement Messaging

Q: What types of messages can I send using Campus Announcement?
A: You can send messages by email, phone call, SMS text message and desktop alerts using Campus Announcement. Note that we do offer an economy desktop alert only package. Both packages offer unlimited messaging for one low per student annual fee.

Q: Am I limited in the number of messages I can send out?
A: No. Campus Announcement provides you with unlimited messaging for one low per student per year cost.

Q: How fast will the messages be sent?     
A: If you set up the broadcast to be delivered immediately your message will reach recipients almost instantly. Campus Announcement supports the sending of thousands of alters per minute.

Q: Can I set the start and end time for calls to be broadcast if I wish?
A: Yes. You can define a call window so that calls start and stop at certain times. This is convenient for non-emergency messages to ensure you do not contact people at inappropriate hours.

Voice Messaging

Q: Can Campus Announcement voice messages be set up so that if the recipient presses a number on their phone keypad the call is transferred back to the school as an inbound call?
A: Yes. Our ‘hot key’ feature enables you to assign a digit on the phone keypad that a call recipient can press to transfer that call as an inbound call to a number of your choosing. ‘Hot keys’ can also be used to set up features such as “Press 1 to repeat this message”

Q: Do I have to record the voice message I want to send out?
A: In addition to offering a toll-free number to call into record your message,s we also offer a text to speech tool so you can simply type in your script and the message will be delivered as an automated voice call to recipient’s phones.

Q: Can I create a different message for when an answering machine or voicemail picks up versus a connect to a live person?
A: Yes. Our system intelligently detects when an answering machine or voicemail picks up the call and we allow you to create two distinct messages when setting up your voice broadcast: one for a live connect and one for voicemails.

Q: Can the message be repeated for the caller if they didn’t catch it all the first time?
A: Yes. By using our ‘hot key’ tool you can assign a key to enable the “Press 1 to repeat this message” feature.

Q: What number will display on the Caller ID when I send a campus announcement?
A: When you set up a voice broadcast you can enter a phone number of your choosing to display as the Caller ID. Typically the college or university main phone number or “911” would be used for any emergency communications, but when broadcasting to sub-groups you may wish to enter the professor’s office phone or a more relevant contact number.

Email Messaging

Q: Can I send attachments to emails using Campus Announcement?
A: Yes. While most messaging systems do not afford this feature Campus Announcement enables you to attach documents to your email broadcasts. This eliminates printing assignments for classes or peppering the campus with fundraising flyers.

Q: Can I send e-newsletters in our HTML design template?
A: Yes. Most of our competitors do not offer this feature but with Campus Announcement you can send attractive looking eNewsletters and professional looking HTML emails. Create or upload your own into your schools template library or choose from our global template library of free designs for your use.

Q: Does your email service utilize my schools server or bandwidth?
A: No. Campus Announcement does not consume any of your bandwidth or server space. It is important that your emergency alert system does not rely on internal resources at your school in case of fire or similar disaster it would be rendered useless. Campus Announcement prevents this risk. Campus Announcement has ample bandwidth to manage hundreds of thousands of messages. By having many servers across multiple locations we ensure uninterrupted service.

Q: What email address and senders display name will the emails come from?
A: When setting up an email broadcast you can enter the ‘from’ email address and associated display name of your choosing.

Desktop Alerts

Q: What is a desktop alert?
A: A desktop alert is when administrators send emergency information, school event reminders and other important information to all computer desktops in the network. An “alert box” will pop up on the desktop of students and faculty and will remain above all running programs until the message is dismissed by the recipient.

Q: How does it work?
A: It is simple! If a computer is hooked up to the campus network, the desktop alert automatically will appear on the screen instantly. This will not affect any programs that are currently running. If a computer is not hooked up to the network, recipients simply need to download a small program that allows the desktop alert to pop up. The download only takes 5 minutes and is very easy to install.

Message Results and Delivery

Q: Are there reports to show me the delivery status of the alerts I have sent?
A: Yes. Our reports are available 24/7 via the internet and are updated in real-time.
For email you can even track who clicked through to any links in your email. Placing a link in an email is a great way to have students and staff acknowledge receipt of a notice and track that.

Q: How can I confirm that my students and staff received the message?
A: The real-time reports accessible online display the delivery status of your messages. Furthermore you can use the ‘hot-key’ feature to have recipients press a digit to confirm their receipt of your message.

Q: If the first attempt to reach a contact fails will the Campus Announcement system make another attempt automatically?
A: You can set up your broadcasts to resend up to three times. The attempts can be set to retry immediately or you can choose to increase the interval between attempts.

Customer Support and Training

Q: Do you provide customer support?
A: Yes. Campus Announcement provides 24X7 customer support through our toll-free phone number.

Q: Do you provide training?
A: Yes. Training is provided and included in the set-up fee. Training takes place via a weekly interactive webinar. You may attend this weekly session as many times as you like!
On-site training is available for an additional fee – please contact us for details.

Q: What is the set-up process? How long does it take?
A: As Campus Announcement is an internet based service there is no set-up required on your end. From receipt of your order we can have you set-up and going in 6 weeks. We simply provision to you a username and password, schedule you for training and you’re up and running!

Campus Announcement General FAQ

Q: Who owns Campus Announcement and how many years have you been in business?
A: Campus Announcement is a division of BLI Messaging. Based in Providence, RI, BLI Messaging has worked with clients such as the New York Times, Cadbury and the New York Stock Exchange. BLI Messaging was founded in 1989 and is a privately held company backed by Catalyst Investors. We have over 50 employees.

Q: Where are your servers located?
A: We have servers across four co-location facilities in MA, RI and PA.

Q: Is Campus Announcement secure?
A: The Campus Announcement platform is a secure site and only accessible via a unique username and password.

Q: Will my data be safe and remain confidential?
A: Yes. Your school data is stored within your password protected account and is not accessible to third parties. Your data will never be sold or shared. Our confidentiality agreements uphold the utmost data privacy standards.

Click here to contact us for more info or to arrange a campus alert system demo