The ACTIVE Works dev team is cranking away on new features to help you get a great start to the spring season. Here’s a highlight from our most recent release on January 29th:
Social media links
One the most important things you can do to help build your organization’s online community is to make your social media presence highly visible. ACTIVE Works now provides you with simple tools to ensure links to your organization’s Facebook and/or Twitter accounts are always in front of your customers – in the online customer account and in the broadcast email tool (Plus version only).
Set up is simple. Just go to Account > Social media and enter your organization’s Facebook and/or Twitter URL’s.
Once you’ve saved your settings, your social media links automatically appear in your online customer account. In addition, whenever you compose an email, just check the “Social media” box to automatically include your social media links.
The ACTIVE Works Camps & Classes email tool has been converted to HTML, making it accessible on most touch-enabled devices. As part of the overhaul, we also made some major improvements based on our most common customer requests.
Attachments: You can now attach files to emails sent with the broadcast email tool. To ensure your email reaches participants, any files you attach to your email appear as download links on the side of the main message body. This is the perfect way to send important documents to your participants.
Templates: Do you find yourself having to send the same email or set of emails to different groups of participants week after week? This chore can be made much easier by creating an email template. In addition to the message content, email templates also contain formatting settings like headers/footers, logo, and the register button. All you have to do is choose the group or list, select a template, and click Send!
Custom header/footer: You can now upload your own custom header and footer images for use in your email. Images you upload are stored in your image library for easy reuse – upload once, use it everywhere!
Test email: We’ve made it easier for you to preview your emails with our new test email functionality. Before you send that big email blast, send yourself and a couple other people in your organization a test email to double-check your work.
Most of the Camp and Class organizations we work with typically have multiple users who need access to the system – from Directors all the way through to seasonal staff or volunteers.
Rather than having everyone share a login, the Plus version of ACTIVE Works Camps & Classes now offers you the ability to add system users with one of three access levels you specify: Administrator, Standard, and Limited (click on the screenshot below for a description of each role).
To add users to your system just go to Account > User administration. There’s no limit to the number of users you can add and you may remove people at any time.
Reducing your amount of unpaid customer balances just became much easier with the new automatic-billing feature now available in the Plus version of ACTIVE Works Camps & Classes. You can setup automatic billing from the Deposit step of season setup.
When you turn on the automatic-billing feature, customers who register online will have the option to pay in full upfront OR pay a deposit with the remaining balance automatically charged to their credit card on a date you specify. ACTIVE Works will even send an automatic email reminder to customers two weeks before the date of the charge.
Customers who sign up for automatic billing are still able to make additional follow up payments through the online account. When this happens the system automatically recalculates their new balance to ensure they are billed only what is due.
ACTIVE Works Camps & Classes now provides you with an easy way to ensure your registrants can only sign up for eligible sessions based on their age, grade, or gender.These new settings can be found in Session setup.
All you have to do is set the session eligibility requirements and ACTIVE Works automatically display this info and enforces these rules in both online registration and manual registration entry. Of course, in manual entry, you can override these restrictions if you need to make an exception for someone.
As an added benefit, the eligibility criteria you select also become available as filters in online registration to help customers browse through a larger list of sessions.
You spoke and we listened! Plus version users can now upsell optional products and services with their sessions. These additional items, called session options, are sold in addition to the basic session tuition. This is a great solution for offering your customers:
- Before care/after care
- Transportation options
- Merchandise items
- Activity fees or field trips
- Group registrations (where you only need to know the # of people attending, rather than the full details on every person)
Session options can be created on the Sessions step of the setup wizard, right underneath session tuition. All you need to create a session option is a Name and Price, but clicking Details also provides you with additional settings including:
- Capacity limit (maximum number that can be purchased for that session)
- Quantity (check this box if you want people to be able to buy more than 1)
- Public or Internal only (you can use this to create a session option that can only be added manually by your staff during manual registration or registration editing)
Session options appear to customers as checkbox items during online registration. And, of course, your staff has full order management capabilities for session options including the ability to add during manual registrations and editing (cancelling/adding/removing/changing quantities) for existing registrations.
Reporting on session options is easy as well. From the Session tab, you can get quick counts for each option sold and even click the link to get a quick list of the people who bought it.
And if you need to build a custom report to save and easily run again, session options are available as a filter criteria as well. (For example, if you wanted to create an “airport pickup list”, just create a new custom report, choose your columns… maybe name, contact info, and flight arrival time/number, and then add a filter for the session option “Airport transportation”).
ACTIVE Works Camps & Classes now provides a basic, self-service, online account providing more convenience for your customers and hopefully fewer phone calls for you! Through their online account, your customers can:
- See upcoming sessions
- View and print receipts
- See unpaid balances and make followup payments
- See upcoming automatic payments
Best of all, the entire experience was designed to work conveniently on any kind of device – mobile, tablet, or desktop!
To offer this functionality to your customers, just post a link to account login on your website. The link can be found from the home page under “Link to online account.” When you add the link to your website, make sure it is very easy to find right from your main page. You might even consider using an image or button that clearly says “Make a payment.”
One of our top requested features, coupon code discounts, is now available for our Plus version users! Coupons are a great tool you can use to:
- Offer specific groups special discounted pricing
- Understand the effectiveness of your different marketing and promotional efforts
- Give a specific family a scholarship discount only they can use
- Create last-minute discounts for a session you’re trying to fill
- And much more
You can create a new coupon from the Coupons tab in the Season View:
Setting up a coupon is a snap. You can:
- Create $ or % discounts (off Tuition)
- Choose which session(s) the coupon can be used for
- Set whether a person gets a discount off ALL sessions they sign up for… or just one
- Set a limit to the number of times a coupon can be used
- Set an expiration date
And of course, for each coupon, you create a special code that registrants enter on the checkout screen of your online registration to receive the discount:
Once your coupons start to be redeemed, the Coupons tab provides you with great visibility on how they are being used. You can even click to view a usage report that tells you exactly who used a coupon and how much of a discount they got.
Coupon codes can also be applied by you or your staff during manual registration entry as well, allowing you to give these special discounts to people who register by paper or via phone.
Our development team has been hard at work for the last few months helping to take ACTIVE Works Camps & Classes to the next level. The result is a ton of new features and tools that will help you drive more registrations, create a great experience for your registrants, and make running your programs that much easier.
We’ll provide more details in upcoming posts, but here are some of the goodies:
- Revamped online registration flow to be mobile-friendly and improve conversion
- Session options for you to sell additional products and services on top of tuition
- Coupon code discounts
- Automatic credit card billing for collecting unpaid balances from your customers
- Age/Grade/Gender restrictions
- Session capacity report
- Broadcast email tool custom branding and templates
- Mobile-friendly online customer account for registrants to view upcoming sessions, print receipts, and make payments
We’ve got so much more in the pipeline for you, but 2013 is off to a great start!
As always, we are constantly looking for feedback. If you have comments and suggestions or want to participate in our usability and research program, just send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Welcome to the ACTIVE Works Camps blog. If you’re looking for the best way to keep up with everything going on in the ACTIVE Works Camps product, you’ve come to the right place. Here you’ll find:
- announcements and descriptions of new features
- system tips & pointers
- important information to help you succeed with ACTIVE Works Camps
If you’re interested in following along with conversations about the Camps industry in general, be sure to check out our Let’s Talk Camp blog.