The University of Illinois Saves campaign developed, in partnership with America Saves, an internet-based communication and engagement strategy to reach faculty and students by setting up a competition among the university’s three campuses. The pilot program encouraged and motivated students, faculty, and staff to set a personal savings commitment and make a simple plan to achieve it by signing up as a University of Illinois Saver. The campus with the most Savers won the competition. The pilot demonstrated significant results in participation and sustainability. While the materials focus on students, this model can be replicated across many different organizations and audiences.
Target Audience: Individuals
Let America Saves be the action component of your financial education efforts. Use our presentations to encourage members, customers, and employees to save effectively. Presentations review why to save, what to save for, and strategies for saving. And they call on individuals to take financial action by pledging to be a Saver with America Saves. When someone pledges to save, they make a basic saving plan, and people with a plan save more successfully.
Target Audience: Organizations
Multiply your outreach to individuals by promoting America Saves to colleagues within your organization, company, agency, or sector.
- How Employers Can Participate in America Saves Week
- How Financial Institutions Can Participate in America Saves Week
Savings Tips and Reminders
Studies show that text message reminders can increase the use of sunscreens, increase the likelihood someone will vote, and have been proven as an economical and effective way to generate increased savings. Research from America Saves also shows that having a savings plan with specific goals can have beneficial financial effects, even for lower-income families.
On April 1, 2013 America Saves launched a new text message service for savers. The service, launched as part of Financial Literacy month, keeps savers who take the America Saves Pledge motivated to save through text message tips and reminders. America Saves uses the goal savers choose when they take the America Saves pledge to help them find money to save and remind them to save for their specific goal.
This initiative is made possible by a generous contribution from Capital One.
Example of Texts
· With each savings deposit, you are one step closer to getting out of debt. Have you made your deposit this month? Reply YES or NO.
· Automatically transferring $ to your savings acct. is the fastest way to save $500 or more for emergencies. Set up an auto-transfer today.
· When saving for a down payment, do not take risks with this money. Keep home savings in a money market or FDIC insured account.
· It’s National Retirement Planning Week! Take this week to look at your retirement savings plan & see if you need to make any changes.
· A 529 plan is one of the most flexible ways to save for college & features tax benefits. See if a 529 is right for you. http://ow.ly/boLGQ
· Rounding debt payments up to the nearest $100 goes a long way toward getting you out of debt faster. Try & round up your next payment.
5,937 people have signed up to receive text messages as of March, 2014.
- General (All other goals)
Survey of Text Subscribers
On August 29, 2013 America Saves offered, via text, a survey to 2,856 active subscribers who signed up before July 25, 2013. 364 (13%) responded to the survey,
· 58 percent said America Saves texts had been very or somewhat helpful.
o Of those, subscribers saving toward an emergency fund (73%), retirement (69%), and homeownership (66%) found the texts most helpful.
· Regarding frequency, 50 percent prefer the frequency of texts to stay the same, while 40 percent would like to receive texts more often.
· When asked how well they are saving or managing debt since getting our texts, 16 percent said much better and 56 percent said a bit better.
o Of those saying much better, most are saving toward an emergency fund (19%), paying down debt (17%), and other goals (14%).
o Of those saying a bit better, most are saving toward paying down debt (60%), an emergency fund (55%), and other goals (59%).
· Fifty-nine percent said they would recommend that friends or family sign up for America Saves text messages.
- TIME - Why Your Teens Would Share a Car But Not a Cellphone (1/29/2014)
- Washington Post - Time to Improve Your Financial Knowledge (4/3/2013)
- Today Show – Featured in Program (4/5/2013)
- Cleveland.com - Struggling with saving? America Saves will text you tips: Plain Dealing (4/16/2013)
- America Saves makes it easy for your organization to get involved. Take a look at the different options, and choose the best fit for you and your colleagues. We look forward to working with you!
- America Saves Week is coordinated by America Saves and the American Savings Education Council. Started in 2007, the Week is an annual opportunity for organizations to promote good savings behavior and a chance for individuals to assess their own saving status. Typically thousands of organizations participate in the Week, reaching millions of people.
- Youth Initiatives
- Campaign for a Secure Retirement
- Text Messaging
- America Saves has over 60 local, regional and statewide campaigns. We also have campaigns dedicated to different audience segments. Click on a link below to learn more.
- If you are interested in organizing a community campaign, we are eager to help. After reading this brief overview, take a look at the campaign resource links that follow to get a better idea of what goes into leading a local America Saves campaign. Then, please be in touch with us at the contact information below.