7 Ways A University Can Use Texting
The first thing any university needs to keep in mind when taking on a new development is the student. How will they feel? How will this affect their experience? The main thing to know is that students don’t want to be bothered, but more importantly, they don’t want to be inconvenienced.
And can you blame them?
School is stressful. Just go to the library at 4 a.m., and you’ll come face to face with hopelessness in its most vile form. Bloodshot eyes, caffeinated twitching, the wave tears following the intrinsic self-realization that all is, in fact, lost and the rest of your college career desires to drag your emotional well-being through a lecture-infused muck of madness. Then the moment comes when you finally walk across that stage, grab your diploma, and achieve those glorious 4 seconds of peace because all is finally well in the world…until you realize that you still have to get a job. Welcome to life.
So how can a university make things easier for students?
When it comes to reaching students, use what they use to communicate. No, you don’t have to read the ancient codex of life’s mysteries to discover that students love texting, ask any professor. It only takes a couple of seconds to catch one of them “discreetly” looking at their phone in class. Despite how annoying that can be, the time has now come to communicate with them via the same medium.
According to the Wall Street Journal, “Teens and people in their early twenties prefer to communicate via text…” (WSJ)
It’s clear that SMS/MMS is the best way to reach the student. But now the question is how? What are the best ways to utilize SMS/MMS within a university? Here are the 7 best ways of doing so:
7. Faculty/Class Engagement
SMS will keep all faculty members on the same page. And professors can keep all of their students on the same page as well. Especially the ones in the library, at 4 a.m., the night before the project is due “wishing they hadn’t forgotten.”(cough procrastinated cough) Whether it’s a text to every subscriber or a select few, SMS targets with pinpoint precision to reach any desired user in the database.
Stop wasting time calling alumni. Use SMS/MMS to keep them current with updates and developments. To make it even better, SMS can generate donations from alumni. Send them a text. They can enter their information and then make a generous contribution right then and there, from their phone, by pressing send.
5. Student Affairs
Remind students about the many programs they have to keep current with whether it’s financial aid, class registration or even dining dollars just to name a few. If it’s in a text, it’s less likely to go unnoticed.
4. Sporting Events
Every University needs engagement at their sporting events. Remind students of the place and time, but maybe make the experience better by introducing mobile sweepstakes or live-surveys at the event. Create a unique atmosphere from which students can participate using their mobile devices.
Recruiting students takes work. And the process can be confusing at times. Send text confirmations about application status, orientations, premiers! You can even provide information for high school students by placing a keyword on signage, at recruiting events, school fairs, or any location you know potential students will be.
2. Campus Life
A huge part of the student experience takes place on campus. However, it can be hard to reel students into on-campus events. SMS/MMS can notify and remind students amidst all of the busyness surrounding their day. SMS/MMS offerings via promotions and sweepstakes can integrate into events to incentivize participation.
This is by far, hands down, the most fundamental solution for any college campus. It’s not something you should just think about, it’s something students need. There have been many tragedies involving college campuses in the past years, and the threat is far from fading. An email notification with a 20% read rate is not going to keep all students safe and notified during emergencies. Try SMS’s 98% read rate. It’s reliable. It’s instant. It has a higher chance of keeping your students safe.
All in all, SMS/MMS is an unquestionable solution for college campuses. It’s the reason for the mass university integration taking place nationwide. Texting allows schools to operate effectively and efficiently at lower costs than alternative methods while providing higher response/engagement rates from students. Whether it’s a university or a business, industry leaders recognize SMS/MMS as the new frontier of communication because it provides a personal touch. A new type of message that has proven to be more powerful than anything else.