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Text Messaging In Church: Check Before You Send
Text messaging is such a powerful tool for reaching our church people. In fact, we would argue that it's the MOST effective method for reaching your church. In our last article about texting, we pulled a statistic from pew research claiming that 99% of text messages are opened in 5 minutes or less. That's a pretty crazy statistic!
When it comes to sending mass SMS messages to our church people, there are a few things that we need to keep in mind before we hit send. We created this Checklist to help you reach your people better. Our hope is that it also saves churches from making rookie mistakes that we've seen others make. We've even made some of these ourselves ?♂️
Things to check before you send a text message:
1. Time Check
Always make sure you send a mass text message at an appropriate time. For example... don't text your entire congregation at 6am on a Sunday reminding them about a service time change. This text will wake up the light sleepers and never get seen by the rest until it's too late. With every message you send, you want it to be sent at a time that ensures it will get read and acted upon. With important announcements, it's always best to send the message a couple days in advance to give people ample time to plan accordingly. So instead of 6am on a Sunday, try 5:30pm on a Friday.
Tip: ChurchTrac can schedule mass text messages hours in advance. When you send a message, you have the option to select immediately or later.
2. Spell Check
It's one thing to misspell a word when it's just you and a friend. It's another thing when you're sending out a text message to your whole church! Make sure you check your message for not only spelling errors, but completely wrong words too. If you don't already have a spell checker built into your browser, we really recommend getting one. It can save you from sending something embarrassing. The following text message may or may not have been sent from one of our churches... ?
3. Content Check
They say content is king. When it comes to bad content, it can really sting. Think about how the message you send will be taken by your people. A Mass text message is not a place to send anything that could be inflammatory or perceived as insensitive. If you're ever questioning a message you're about to send, then it's probably not a message you should send through such a limiting medium. One of the biggest limitations in SMS messaging is tone. When delivering such a short message with no voice or face, it's best to keep a neutral tone. The last thing you want is a church member reading your text like this...
4. Audience Check
There are times when a text message will fall on deaf ears for most of your congregants. If a message is only applicable to a segment or group of people, it's best to only send it to that group in a Smart List or Tag. This will save you money and also help keep your people from developing fatigue from receiving too many messages. A great example of this is a women's event. Don't send a text to both men and women when only women will be the ones attending. Messages sent to the wrong audience can quickly create confusion!
5. Relevance Check
Are you as they say... #Relevant?
We see many churches text their congregation things like weekly bible verses, inspiring quotes, or links to the pastor's blog. These are great because they relate to what's happening in your ministry. It's best to stay on point and not deviate from what your church/ministry is all about. Avoid sending texts that are not relevant to your ministry. Just like point #4, you can easily cause confusion in doing this. Always ask why you're sending the text.
One more thing...
After you do all your text checks, make sure you check out the other great features built into ChurchTrac. Some of these features include Online Giving, Church Website, Mass Email, Child Check-In, Worship Planning, Volunteer Scheduling, and much more!
Need to talk to a real human to learn about the features in our Church Software? Schedule a phone call with us HERE.
Till next time 👋
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