There are a variety of ways to use your nation's virtual phone number to connect with prospects and supporters. Using one of these tactics can give your nation a great boost - viewing them holistically and as an organic extension of your other efforts can fundamentally change your relationship with your community. 

For example, the majority of US mobile phone owners use text messaging and some people, particularly those 24 and younger, prefer communicating via text, according to the Pew Internet & American Life Project. You can take advantage of this preferred method of communication with the following tactics:

  1. promote texting JOIN to your nation's number
  2. set up text keywords for all action pages on your website, especially to RSVP for an event and to sign a petition
  3. incorporate text messaging into pre and post event planning
  4. when developing a social media ambassador program, give people the option to receive communication via text

 

texting
Photo by Holden Karau,
Creative Commons license via Flickr

Keywords

When someone texts a keyword to your number, they will receive automated response emails to help them complete the action they are trying to take. JOIN is set up by default, to allow people to join your nation by texting your number. This is a great way expand your network, since people will be opted into receiving text messages and will be prompted to provide their email address and street address so that you can get in touch with them in a variety of ways. 

Similarly, allowing people to text your number to sign a petition or RSVP for an event provides a convenient option for participation in your nation.

Segmented Text Blasting

You can help keep your event top of mind and encourage a stronger turnout by reminding people about their RSVP, or providing last minute updates to the event details, in the hours before an event occurs. This is also a great way to reach out to attendees to thank them for their time after an event occurs.

Social Media Ambassadors

Many people are active on social media via their smart phones, so it makes sense to communicate with your social media ambassadors via text. People tend to respond to text messages even faster than email, so it can help push your message out farther and faster than other forms of communication.

Responding to Received Texts

Update the default settings for your broadcaster from Communications > [Broadcaster Name] > Settings > Basic. Make sure to set a followup when a broadcaster receives a text messages. Consider also alerting a point person when text messages are received. 

In Communications > [Broadcaster Name] > Settings > Texting, define the level of detail a person will be prompted to provide when joining or taking action via text message. You can also assign a point person to people who send text messages and tag people who send text messages from this area.

Voicemail

Remember that your virtual phone number can also accept voicemail for your nation. The voicemail recording will be stored in the dashboard of the broadcaster receiving the message and the person's profile who sends the voicemail. 

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Additional resources:

How to use text messaging

Text message pricing. 

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