What is a Text Alert

Text alerts are messages delivered automatically to cellphones and other mobile devices. These notifications are designed to remind receivers of important events, alert them of impending events, emergencies or provide information. Different industries may take advantage of text alerts because it is easy to sign up for, set up, and use to their business’ advantage. 

The usage purpose of text message alerts differs in every situation. Some of the most popular alters are related to banks and credit cards. Account-holders may receive notifications when withdrawals, deposits, or payments are made in the account. In most cases, credit card companies also send out alerts when the account is used in stores or online. If you worry about identity theft, mainly if you process credit card payments, text alerts are one of the best ways to reassure customers that they are protected.  

But text alerts are not just for financial institutions or retail stores. Let us know more about this standard service and why it is essential for private businesses and various institutions. 

How does Text Alert Work?

Text alerts work by sending messages to a list of numbers subscribed to the service. The message is usually short and includes a link or phone number that the subscriber can use to get more information about the alert.

Using a text alert system allows businesses to broadcast both urgent and non-urgent messages to large groups of people simultaneously.

To send out text alters, the basic steps are:

Collection of Subscribers – The business or institution will first need to collect the phone numbers of people who want to receive alerts. It can be done manually or through an automated process that gathers numbers from a customer database or other source. Subscribers need to signify their desire to receive text alerts from such businesses through an opt-in service.

Setup of Text Alert System – The next step is to set up the text alert system. It usually involves creating a template for the messages, setting up delivery times and frequencies, and determining the type of alerts sent.

Delivery of Text Alerts – The text alerts are then delivered to the subscribers’ phones at the designated time. It can be done through a text messaging service or an application that sends the signals as push notifications.

What is the Purpose of a Text Alert?

The purpose of a text alert is to inform people about news, emergencies, updates, or any other relevant information about the business or organization where they are subscribed. Here are five purposes of text alerts based on specific industries:

1. Text Alerts for Marketing

Today, marketing is one of the most popular usage cases for text alert services. More than 98% of text messages are read within minutes; thus, businesses have discovered that their customers react far better to SMS than they do to email or other forms of marketing. It’s easy to see why companies adopt text alerts at such a rapid rate when comparing the read and clickthrough rates to other platforms. With its special deals to mobile coupons and text-to-win contests, text message marketing delivers measurable ROI.

Examples of text alerts for marketing are:

  • Visit Domino’s Pizza nearest you in the next two hours to get a 25% discount! Just show this message before paying.
  • Red Lobster: Get a free appetizer or dessert when you join our email club!
  • Hi Gwen! Your favorite brand at Macy’s is now on sale! Get as much as 50% off on the latest releases!

2. Text Alerts for Emergency 

Text alerts become a valuable tool in reaching people out instantly during emergencies. Don’t wait until a crisis occurs to set up your communication plan. It could be anything from an active shooter to bad weather or a power outage. You’ll be able to find an appropriate text alert service for your immediate needs. And it will take you just a few clicks if you ever need to send urgent messages.

Examples are:

  • National Weather Services: A storm surge warning is in effect for this area for the danger of life-threatening flooding. Urging efforts to protect life and property. Follow evacuation orders in the area to avoid drowning or being cut off from emergency services.
  • Oil Spill on 34 Highway, Falmouth. Gate 3 will remain closed until clear. Workers report to gate no. 8.
  • Fire, evacuate building now. This is not a drill.

3. Text Alerts for School

Schedules can vary, as can events that necessitate notification for all parties. Don’t rely on email or phone calls when promptly notifying instructors or students about crucial information. Various educational institutions may use text alert systems to send important text messages to everyone simultaneously. It’s unbeatable when it comes to keeping everyone on the same wavelength.

Some examples of text alerts for schools:

  • Montana State University: This is a test of the emergency text alert system.
  • University of Michigan: The final exam schedule for the winter semester is now available online. Please review the date, time, and room for your exams.
  • Dear Parents, the winter concert has been rescheduled for tomorrow at 6:00 pm in the auditorium.

4. Text Alerts for Flights

Airlines are now turning to text alerts as a faster, more efficient way of communicating with their passengers. With the ever-growing list of phone numbers, airlines find that texting is the most direct way to reach passengers about changes or delays in their flights. Plus, when customers provide their cell phone numbers, they automatically opt-in to receive text alerts from the airline.

Here are some examples of text notifications from airline companies:

  • It’s almost time for your flight to Ontario. You can check in now on the Air Inforip website. Choose your seat and print your boarding passes.
  • Hi Alvin, your flight JL0083 to Beijing is delayed by 3 hours due to poor weather conditions. The new departure time from Manila is 18:45 on 03/08/2022. Visit singaporeairlines.com for more info.
  • Thank you for flying with BaliAir. We hope you see you on your next flight!

5. Text Alerts for Delivery

Delivery services use text alerts to communicate with their customers about the progress of their orders. Notifications about delivery times, updates on package location, and other information can be sent to customers through text alerts. It allows customers to keep track of their packages without continuously checking the delivery company’s website.

Some examples of these types of text alerts are:

  • Hi Vanessa! Your parcel has been picked up by Shopee Express from the seller. You can expect its delivery earlier than the estimated date!
  • Your package has arrived at the local sortation center. Please keep lines open for a hassle-free delivery anytime this week.
  • Your order is on its way! We aim to be with you in the next 30 minutes.

Which Companies Use Text Alerts?

Which Companies Use Text Alerts

A wide variety of companies use text alerts to communicate with their customers. It includes restaurants, retailers, small businesses, schools, airlines, delivery services, and more. Some famous examples of companies using SMS marketing are:

  • Delta Airlines – the airline company, uses text alerts for changes in flight schedules, updates, and other important information for passengers.
  • The Cheesecake Factory – the restaurant chain sends out text alerts with special deals and offers.
  • Taco Bell – the fast-food chain sends out text alerts for new menu items, contests, and other promotional information.
  • Victoria’s Secret – the lingerie retailer, sends text alerts with special sales and discounts.

How to Send Text Alerts?

Sending text alerts is easy to do once you have the right tools and an SMS marketing service provider. You can set up the process even without technical experience. Here are the three basic steps to follow:

1. Select a Keyword

To receive text messages from you, people must first opt-in by using a method called text-to-join. People must send a distinct keyword to your shortcode or phone number for them to join. A keyword is a unique word individuals use to contact your number. There are many of these lists, and you may choose any word that is not in use or copyrighted.

2. Build Your Subscriber List

Once you have a keyword, you need to build your subscriber list. It can be done through various methods such as online sign-ups, manual entry, or importing from another list. The key is to make it easy for people to join and provide accurate contact information.

3. Create and Send Text Alerts 

With your keyword and subscriber list in hand, it’s time to create and send your text alerts. You’ll be able to design the alerts however you want, including the use of images and HTML codes. You can also personalize the messages for each subscriber. Remember to keep the alerts short and to the point.

What should You Know about Text Alerts?

Text alerts should not be used as a replacement for other forms of communication but rather as a compliment. It’s essential to understand the benefits and limitations of text alerts before using them in your business or organization. Some things to consider include:

  • Text alerts are best for time-sensitive or urgent messages.
  • Not everyone will have the ability to receive text alerts, so it’s crucial to have an alternate way of contacting your subscribers.
  • Text alerts can be costly, so they should only be used when necessary.
  • People can respond to text alerts, but there is no guarantee that they will.
  • Text alerts should be concise and easy to read.

How Much does a Text Alert System Cost?

A text alert system costs can range from $79 to $139 or more per month. The cost of a text alert system depends on the features you want and the provider you choose. 

Generally, there is a monthly fee associated with using text alerts and a charge for each text message that is sent. It’s essential to research and compare prices before selecting a provider. Additionally, you may also take advantage of free trial offers to see if the services provided are what you need for your organization.

Yes, text alerts are legal as long as you adhere to the rules and regulations set by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). It includes obtaining permission from subscribers before sending them text messages and following the CAN-SPAM Act.

Although it’s straightforward, there may be significant penalties for disregarding the fundamental best practices for large-scale text messaging. The TCPA is a set of rules that govern all mass texting services and are designed to safeguard customers from unsolicited text and phone spam. The most important thing to remember is that you must have received explicit SMS consent from everyone you’re texting.

Can People Respond to Text Alerts?

Yes, people can respond to text alerts, but there is no guarantee that they will. For people to respond, they must first have a phone that supports text messaging and be within the coverage area of your text alert service provider. Remember that not everyone who joins your subscriber list will receive your text alerts. 

Messages are sent to the provider’s gateway, which forwards them to the appropriate mobile phone carriers. If someone’s phone is turned off, out of range, or they’re traveling outside of the country, they will not receive your message.

What Types of Numbers can I Use for Text Alerts?

You can use any phone number for text alerts, including cell phones, landlines, short codes, and even toll-free numbers. However, it’s important to note that not all phone numbers will work with every text alert service provider. You’ll need to check with your chosen provider to see which type of numbers are supported. Additionally, using short codes allow you to track the response rate for your text alerts.

Now that you understand the basics of text alerts, it’s time to create a subscriber list and send your first message. Remember that text alerts should only be used for time-sensitive or urgent messages. And, as always, remember to follow the rules and regulations set by the FCC.

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