4 Best Practices for Mobile Mass Notification

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mobile-mass-sms-text-notification-best-practices

Mobile Mass Notification is Ubiquitous

Mass SMS text messages are often where organizations first look when selecting an emergency notification system. While Singlewire Software has always, and continues to support a well-rounded notification ecosystem where messages reach on-premises and mobile devices, the fact remains that there is high demand in the marketplace for solutions that can blast SMS text messages throughout an organization. People rarely are separated from their phones, so it makes sense that this is the primary means organizations want to use to reach people.

Learn about the issues with mobile-only alerts

However, whether your organization is using mass SMS text messaging as the sole means of sending an emergency notification, or including it as part of a larger notification strategy, it’s important to utilize best practices when composing and sending alerts. In this blog post, we’ll outline four best practices your organization can use to ensure it’s sending effective mass SMS text messages.

Make the Message Clear

Clarity is key when it comes to sending any emergency notification. That clarity needs to be applied to several areas: who the message is coming from, what the content of the message is, and what the recipient should do once they’ve read the message. Recipients need to recognize who is sending the message so they can understand the importance of the message content. The content itself should be explicit about what kind of situation is taking place, and whether or not the recipient is in any immediate risk. Finally, the message should end with instructions on what the recipient should do. This might include evacuating, sheltering in place, or other directions that will help them stay out of harm’s way. Accomplishing these three goals will make the message more effective and avoid confusion.

Brevity is Key

SMS text messages are limited to 160 characters, so crafting a message that is brief enough not to be split over multiple messages can be challenging. You want to include all the details we listed above, but still keep it short enough that it avoids being broken up over multiple texts. For large organizations in particular, this can cause unintended headaches. When large volumes of text messages are being pushed out, and that message needs to be split, there’s no guarantee the messages will arrive in the intended order. That can cause unwanted stress and confusion if someone receives the latter part of a message first. Keeping messages short and to the point will help with clarity and having people take the appropriate actions.

Plan Ahead

One of the best ways to achieve the first two items on this list is by building message templates ahead of time. Creating messages in the moment isn’t an inefficient use of time when every second counts, and it can be hard to draft a concise message. Determine the scenarios your organization is most likely to face, then start writing the messages that include the most useful information. Doing this ahead of time will give you the opportunity to rewrite and hone that message until it is short and clear. Finally, save these messages as templates in your mass notification system.

Discover message templates for common scenarios

Avoid Alert Fatigue

One of the appealing aspects of mass SMS text messaging is the convenience. With a push of a button, you can hit thousands of people with critical information, but it’s important not to abuse this convenience. Sending too many mass SMS text messages can lead to people ignoring alerts or unsubscribing. It’s important for organizations to have guidelines for when mass SMS text messages should be used so as not to flood recipients with irrelevant notifications.

Read more about avoiding alert fatigue

These best practices will help your organization deliver useful mass SMS text messages. However, it’s important to remember that leveraging one channel for emergency communications is rarely an effective strategy when trying to reach all of your people. Leverage on-premises devices in addition to mobile devices to help achieve 100 percent reach with messages that keep people safe and informed.

 

 

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