For the past month, we’ve dedicated Mobile Monday to discussing the various facets of a complete QR code campaign, from placement to content. This week, we were going to discuss tracking and analytics to measure the success of your campaign.
However, given that the eZanga office in Middletown, DE is closed and we are all hunkering down to await Hurricane Sandy (or Frankenstorm, whichever you prefer), we thought it would be more appropriate to talk about how your cell phones and tablets can come in handy and keep you informed in severe weather conditions.
This may just be me, but it seems like part of the preparations for possible power outages now includes charging every electronic device that could possibly entertain you during days trapped inside with no electricity. When they run out, I await a moment when the weather is tame enough to take a drive to get fast food and charge my phone in the car. I’m also seriously considering buying a hand crank charger. But I may be a little obsessed with my gadgets.
But aside from beating boredom, your mobile devices can come in handy in severe weather conditions, sometimes in ways you don’t even realize until after the fact. Here are a few suggestions for how to stay informed during extreme weather. Just remember that you’ll want to use your phone or tablet sparingly, since you won’t know when you’ll be able to charge it again.
- Hurricane tracking apps – There’s no shortage of paid and free apps for tracking hurricanes, from specific hurricane apps like Hurricane Tracker to general weather apps that will come in handy any time, like The Weather Channel’s app or mobile website. Most apps include maps and radar, as well as forecasts. Some, like Hurricane Tracker, even pull in Twitter streams from reputable weather sources.
- FEMA app – FEMA has apps for several platforms to keep you informed. It contains checklists for what to do before, during, and after storms; lists for what to include in an emergency kit; and features to plan meeting locations with friends and family. There are also areas to apply for disaster assistance and recovery tips, maps of recovery centers and shelters, ways to get involved, and blog and social media posts.
- Local news apps – If your local news stations have mobile apps, download those, too. While other apps will be great for keeping you informed about the weather, the news will have more information on how that weather is actually affecting your area.
- Text alerts – A lot of services and websites let you sign up for text alerts, which can come in handy if you can’t connect to WiFi or 3G.
- Flashlight – Lastly, don’t forget a flashlight app, in case you run out of candles or batteries for your flashlight!
To our east coast readers, please stay safe! Are there any other apps they should download?