Congratulations! You’ve jumped through the administrative hoops and you’re finally ready to start texting your students. You have a lot of great information to send out, but you want to make sure your messages are relevant and don’t fall into the TLDR trap. The beauty of a text message is that it’s short, sweet, and to the point, so here are a few tips and tricks to send information in 160 characters or less.
Abbreviations (or abbrevs) are the easiest way to cut down on character count. Shortening “information” to “info” and “legitimate” into “legit” gives you enough space to add personalization to a message, such as a student’s first name.
Sending a link to students is a great way to give them all of the information they need, but some links are over 160 characters! Services like bitly or TinyURL shrink your link to about 20 characters, creating room for additional information in your message. Also, creating an account on bitly lets you track the click rate on your link to find out how many students are clicking on it.
Shortcuts are similar to abbreviations. Instead of cutting off letters from the original word, you’re replacing them. Replacing “and” with “&,” “to/too/two” with “2,” or “before” with “b4” are common uses when you’re just over the 160 character limit. However, you want to make sure you don’t oversaturate your message with shortcuts. The message should still sound like it’s coming from you, so use them sparingly.
Pre-programming automated responses not only shortens the original text, but also promotes engagement and keeps the message relevant. For example, not every student needs information about fall internship opportunities. Only the students interested in fall internship opportunities need that message. Send out a message like:
Students that respond “yes” might receive a “Good luck!” message, while students that respond “no” will get fall internship links and information that’s relevant to their situation.
Now that you’re equipped with texting knowledge from the pros, go out and share your information in 160 characters! Need more help?
Get more tips and tricks from Signal Vine’s Customer Success team.