Case Study: Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps sent more than 1,000,000 Voice Calls and SMS text messages as part of their campaign to promote financial literacy. The most successful part of this was an engaging 12-episode soap opera drama that was sent to the survivors using SMS text messages and automated phone calls. The soap opera highlighted decisions made by a fictional Filipino couple confronted by financial hardships. To test comprehension and reinforce the learning effect, each episode was followed by a quiz. Recipients were asked to answer each quiz question by pressing 1 or 2 on their phone’s keypad. 48% of Voice Message recipients responded to the quiz, and out of 17.3% Voice Message recipients that were surveyed, the average use of savings accounts increased by 106%.
Due to the high response rate to the soap opera episodes, Mercy Corps was able to achieve a dramatic increase in financial literacy among the recipients, resulting in a 106% increase in savings among people who reported receiving soap operas via automated phone calls. The soap opera campaign was so effective that Mercy Corps launched a second soap opera to further reinforce financial skills.