Are you texting students, but they’re not texting back? If you answered yes, these tips are for you! Here are four small tweaks you can make to your texts that have a huge impact on message response rates:

1. Introduce Yourself

Students aren’t going to respond to an anonymous text from a number they don’t know. Unless you want an inbox full of “Who is this?” messages, you need to say who you are and why you’re texting.

Instead of: “Hey! Don’t forget to refile your FAFSA this year.”
Try: “Hey, this is Arianna from Awesome University. I’ll be sending you texts this semester to help you refile your FAFSA so you can keep getting financial aid.”

Student Texting

2. Personalize Messages

Using student information in your text messages is the easiest and most effective way to make each text relevant to each student. Your message feels like a one-on-one message sent directly from your phone, rather than a machine-generated mass blast.

Instead of: “Scholarship applications are due next week. Submit yours today!”
Try: “Hi Stephanie, your application for the Engineering scholarship is due 8/30. Make sure you submit your application on your student portal:”

3. Text the Right Students

The quickest way to disengage your students is to send them a message that doesn’t pertain to them. Don’t be ignored – use your student data to target messages to relevant groups and individuals.

Instead of: “Course registration begins this week for some students.”
Try: “Brian, fall registration for sophomore Business majors opens tomorrow at 9am.”

4. Ask a Question

Students won’t respond to a message if you don’t ask them to. When you do ask a question, you’ll see response rates as high as 80%! We recommend asking your question at the end of your message so that the call-to-action is clear to students.

Instead of: “Campus visits are filling up fast! Register now for one of the upcoming accepted student days.”
Try: “Miranda, campus visits are filling up fast. Have you registered for an accepted student day yet? Let me know yes or no.”

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About the author: Arianna Hartmann manages Signal Vine’s customer success team. She knows the best tips and tricks when it comes to texting students. You can find her on LinkedIn here.