Success Story

Planned Parenthood

949 people texted in to begin the health insurance enrollment process.


How do you help more Americans without insurance enroll in health coverage plans before the open enrollment deadline?

The Affordable Care Act made health insurance more affordable for millions of Americans. As the leading women’s health care provider and advocate, Planned Parenthood has a unique and important role to play in educating the patients and communities it serves.

To that end, Planned Parenthood launched a multi-pronged effort to raise awareness about the benefits of the law and to provide step-by-step guidance about how to get enrolled — from helping people learn what kind of financial help they could get to sharing information about what to consider in a plan. Planned Parenthood also wanted to offer real-time support every step of the way and utilized digital tactics to amplify and connect to field activities, including door-to-door canvassing and large enrollment events.

While many people enrolled, there remained a large number of eligible uninsured who during the final weeks of the enrollment period had yet to sign up for coverage.


Planned Parenthood used the Upland Mobile Commons text messaging platform to connect individuals with enrollment assistance.

Since text messages are more widely used and responded to than any other communication channel — including e-mail and social media — among young adults, Hispanics, and lower-income families, Planned Parenthood knew that text messaging was an important way to reach these important audiences. And since text messages are immediate, Planned Parenthood knew that text messages would help ensure audiences were getting up-to-date and timely information about in-person enrollment assistance in the lead up to the enrollment deadline.

Planned Parenthood and Mobile Commons worked together to target the key communities with a simple yet effective mobile strategy. Mobile phone users could text their zip code to a short code to receive a text message response with the address of the nearest enrollment event. Upon receiving the text with the location, the user was prompted to respond with “CAN” if they could make it to that center, or “CANT” if they could not. If they texted back “CANT,” they were rerouted via phone call to a Planned Parenthood representative, who would talk the user through finding the best way to enroll in health insurance.

The Planned Parenthood keyword and short code were provided in English and Spanish on the radio and online. The radio broadcast ensured that communities without Internet access would get important information about enrollment and the pending deadline.


949 people texted in so that they could begin the health insurance enrollment process with the help of a certified application counselor.

As a result of Planned Parenthood’s innovative strategy, 949 people texted in their zip code so that they could begin the enrollment process. An astounding 48% of the respondents were Spanish speakers. Planned Parenthood was also able to immediately connect 18% of respondents to the nearest in-person site with enrollment assistance. For the remaining people who texted CANT, Planned Parenthood spoke with them over the phone to help them find other ways to enroll in health insurance. Ultimately, 28% of the people who texted in began the enrollment process. What a great success!

With text message’s immediacy and popularity, Planned Parenthood was able to achieve their goal of reaching an important community in a short amount of time to offer full-on, real-time support about the health insurance enrollment process.

Mobile Commons provided an invaluable service to us during the months before the enrollment deadline. Their product allowed us to reach communities in an efficient, easy, and effective manner. We also loved the professional and courteous service their team provided. Thanks Mobile Commons!” – Vanessa Gonzalez-Plumhoff, Director, Latino Leadership & Engagement at Planned Parenthood Federation of America