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Alerting +Data = ?

Leveraging Partnerships to Improve Mass Notification Policies

Lauren Stienstra, M.Sc., CEM

Senior Manager, Policy & Research- Arlington County OEMSlide2


From Problem to Research to ResultsResearch ProcessResultsSolution Development

Implementation & Lessons Learned

What’s Next?Slide3

Research Questions

HOW MANY ENROLLMENTS DO WE NEED?Who and Where are our people?

How do alerts affect behavior?

How do keywords/topics of the alerts affect enrollment?

How many people need to be enrolled?

Quality vs. quantity

Who shares information? Slide4

Where are our people?

Raw enrollments

Allotment by civic associationSlide5

Better Answer:

Heat map of counts within census tract (yellow borders)

Weighted by population density

Arlington National Cemetery and Reagan Airport tracts removedSlide6

By Location Name

Location name: a write-in option to describe location receiving alerts

Work, office,




, travail

Most common: 2100 Clarendon Blvd. Slide7

Alerts: What are We Saying

Analyzed word frequency in all of the alerts sent out in the past two years

Most common words:





Alerts: What do People React To

Analyzed word frequency of alerts where users replied “STOP”.

Most common words:






How Should we Say it?

3 & 30 Principle (Chandler, 2010)Optimal messages relay key information in 3 short sentences with no more than 30 words

6 & 60 Principle (Chandler, 2010)

60 reading ease score & 6th grade comprehension level

Be honest, transparent, and direct

Include actions for people to take in response to the emergencySlide10

Who Shares Information

Intrinsic and extrinsic motivations influence member’s intention to share (Yeon et al., 2016)

If there’s motivation, people will share

People who enjoy helping others are more likely to share

Sharing is less likely if the information is widely available (Park, 2014)

If it’s easy, people will share information (Park, 2014)Slide11


Openness to experience: active imagination, aesthetic sensitivity, attentiveness to inner feelings, intellectual curiosity, and independence of judgment.


: good-natured, forgiving, courteous, helpful, generous, cheerful and cooperative.


: dutiful, dependable, responsible, hardworking, and achievement-oriented.


Propensity to trust

Affective commitment

: emotional attachment to, identification with, and involvement in the organization and its goals.Affiliative tendency- preference for friends and attachments vs. independence and preference for group vs. individual activities. Public individuation, but only when there is high level of interpersonal interaction and they are given personal credit for their contribution. Slide12

Strong Interest Inventory Results

Teaching/Training (middle, high, elementary) Counseling (religious, medical, career, etc.) Restaurant/Arts/Entertainment Managers

Medical (Nursing, Allied Health, etc.)

Sales (especially insurance)Slide13

What did we do with this Information?

Based on per capita account enrollment distribution, direct outreach programming to the civic associations adjacent to Columbia Pike, as well as Hall’s Hill and Nauck

, for the next calendar year.

Based on the psychological profile of information sharing, target marketing towards the identified careers and community rolesSlide14

What did we do with this Information?

Based on the “STOP” message vocabulary assessment, evaluating how the number of traffic messages can be effectively reduced.

Based on the literature review of notification fatigue, review messaging policies and refrain from extraneous messaging (esp. around automatic weather alerts).Slide15

Lesson Learned:

Based on the data collection itself, improve the way data is collected, organized, and structured within the system. Slide16

Enrollment Campaigns

Putting Results to the TestSlide17

National Preparedness Month

Civic Association Contest“Check Your Prep” audits at Sugar ShackEmergency Kit Cook Off



Preparedness Displays at 3 LibrariesSlide18

Distribution of New Accounts



Dominion Hills

Ballston-Virginia Square


“Clicks for a Cause”

Pro-social behaviors can be leveraged when it’s easy to do:People like performing altruistic behaviors, especially when it’s easy/low cost

People engage in internet activity when it’s easy (Facebook likes, retweets, etc.)

Non-profit community has been able to leverage this for pro-social behaviors:

“Click this button to donate food to an animal shelter” on a page of ads

Page views/ad revenue fund the charitable work

Essentially, I got you to look at ads because you wanted to save the animals.

Can we use a similar system?

Translate pro-social impulses into Arlington Alert Enrollments?Slide22


Enroll in Arlington Alert, and we’ll make a donation on your behalf (enrollee gets to choose!):

Help yourself, help your community.

A Can of Beans


A Pair of Socks


A Cup of Food


A Box of Crayons



Is this unique?Not in the non-profit world…

Greater Good suite of Websites

Heifer International



“Price Framing and Rewards” (Donor Psychology Term)Allows us to use the following persuasive forces:Visual Imagery (more motivating)


Value Attribution

Ownership BiasSlide25


Only 250 new enrollments!Slide26

POSTmortem: Why did it fail?

Enrollment still too burdensomeLittle message amplification from partners (AFAC, etc.)

Competing messages/causes during “season of giving”

Privacy Concerns

“Preaching to the Choir” -> the people we target are already enrolled

Manpower/Short timelinesSlide27


Average Monthly Growth (previous 7 months): 165Average County Population Growth: 179

Total population in Arlington 2016: 220,400

Total enrollments: 23,661

= 10.7%

Is this a ceiling?Slide28

What’s next?

Continued Research with Virginia TechCollaboration in the RegionDevelop new, more relevant strategic measures

Continue high impact, precisely targeted outreach

By: liane-varnes
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Alerting + - Description

Data Leveraging Partnerships to Improve Mass Notification Policies Lauren Stienstra MSc CEM Senior Manager Policy amp Research Arlington County OEM Agenda From Problem to Research to Results ID: 590009 Download Presentation

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