How the Education Sector Can Benefit from SMS Messaging
With over 2 billion people using smartphones nowadays, it makes sense to incorporate SMS marketing as part of your everyday communication. There are, of course, many ways to keep in touch these days. You can use the traditional method of sending out letters, but this can become costly and is not an effective method of communication for urgent messages. Emails are another option, however, junk mail filters can get in the way and this can cause the message to get lost en route to the recipient.
By far, the most effective form of communication these days is SMS. Not only is it cost-effective, it is also ideal when you need to relay important information quickly. We live in a society where most people are attached to their phone 24/7 and as such, most messages can be picked up within a few minutes or even seconds in some cases. SMS is also more reliable, as you receive a delivery report if the message hasn’t reached the handset, so you know the mobile number is wrong or there is an issue with the recipient’s phone.
The education sector can greatly benefit from the use of SMS messaging, as it can be a good way to build strong relationships with students, parents and also other members of staff. These are some of the ways to make good use of SMS messaging in the education sector.
When the winter season starts, there are often weather conditions which can affect travelling and even lead to closures. Quite often, parents and students don’t know about these until they have reached the school grounds, which means a wasted journey and can cause worry if there are no child care arrangements for younger children. With the use of text messaging, parents and students can be informed about any weather issues which may affect them, so they can make alternative arrangements.
Parents often lead busy lives and it can be easy to forget about meetings, particularly if they have been sent by letter in advance. With the use of SMS, parents can receive gentle reminders about upcoming parent/teacher meetings, so they don’t miss them.
Through the use of bulk SMS, schools and universities can also send reminders about exam dates and locations of the exams. It can also be a good way of quickly informing students about any changes to the exams or allowing them to ask questions if there is anything they are unsure of.
There are always events going on at schools, universities and nurseries, so much so that it can be very difficult to keep up with them. With online SMS, parents and students can be quickly informed about any new events they may wish to attend and also receive reminders as the date approaches. The message can inform parents and students about the location of the event, as well as any arrangements for pick up and drop off.
It can often be difficult to get ahold of parents by phone, especially if they are at work, and sometimes situations occur which require urgent attention – for example, if a child gets sick and needs to be picked up, or if they are involved in an accident. Parents are far more receptive to picking up an SMS alert than they are with a telephone call, so it means you can reach them quickly. You will also know if they haven’t received the message, which is something you can’t be sure of when you leave a voicemail. Additionally, we’ve all had that missed call and feared the worst – an SMS can include the facts about any incident, specifically how serious it is in nature.
It is important for students to ensure they don’t miss their deadlines for handing in coursework, but with busy schedules, it can often be difficult to keep track of when work is due in. Of course, many universities have this information on their own online system, but this doesn’t mean that students will look at it. Through the use of SMS reminders, you can let students know that coursework deadlines are approaching, so they have no excuse for handing it in late!
It is often the case that students and parents completely forget about non-uniform days until their child lets them know that they were the only one in uniform. This can be embarrassing and can leave parents feeling guilty for making their child feel excluded. With the use of SMS alerts, you can inform parents about any upcoming non-uniform days and send reminders as the date approaches. This means that no one is left red-faced!
Parents need to have childcare in place for holidays and in-service days, but often, these are not relayed until the very last minute. In-service day SMS reminders can be set up and sent out in bulk to parents. This can relieve a lot of stress and hassle for parents and can help build good, positive relationships.
SMS messaging can also be used for a more efficient way of keeping in touch with staff. It can be used to let them know about any events coming up or as a means of filling staff absences quickly. It is important for schools and universities to keep good relationships with staff, as this can improve the quality of the service they provide to students. With SMS, staff will always be informed of anything which may affect them, which will also improve overall morale.
Campus stores and restaurants can also use SMS effectively to let students know about any special offers they have on or new products as they arrive. Students are always on their phones, so this is the most effective way to keep in touch with them. It is a far more useful way to communicate than noticeboards, which actually often go unnoticed! Not only is this a good way to help build good relationships with students, it can also be a way of driving more customers, and therefore increase sales. With universities and colleges always looking to maximise cash flow, this is a useful way to do it.
When it comes to using SMS messaging in student education, one major issue that comes up is whether students should have mobile phones at all (in class). Currently in the UK, each school sets its own rules on mobile phone usage. Some allow them in class and some ban them entirely.
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