Texting Bulk Messages: What You Need to Know
When running a chiropractic practice, you often need to reach all your patients as quickly as possible. Broadcast messages are the best way to save time while sending bulk messages (as long as you avoid being categorized as spam by carrier filters).
Why? Patients are most likely to see messages sent via text instead of email.
A broadcast message (one message sent to many contacts) is easy to create. Simply write one text that goes out to all your patients or groups of patients.
Yet, it’s important to carefully consider how to word the broadcast message. The right wording can do more than help you avoid being sorted into a spam folder. The right wording also makes the biggest impact on your message!
Read on for top best practices when sending broadcast messages to your patients.
1. Keep Bulk Messages Short
We advocate for the “SPEAR” method when sending any text. Texting is a short format. No one wants to sit reading a text that goes on forever, and you might be flagged as spam if your message goes on and on.
As such, we advocate for the “SPEAR” method when sending any text. The SPEAR method is:
- Expect A Reply
For example, a SPEAR-method text to dormant patients might read, “It’s been a while… how are you?”
It’s brief, doesn’t sound like typical bulk messages, and will engage the patient by making it natural for them to reply. Then, you can get a conversation going to reactivate the patient and fill that calendar!
2. Be Prepared to Reply
You wrote messaging to expect replies because you are trying to engage your patients. You wanted to talk with them, not at them. Consequently, it’s essential to read any follow-up messages and reply, moving the individual along the patient journey.
If you sent a bulk message about being closed for an emergency weather situation, be prepared to reply when people ask to reschedule. Fortunately, the Zingit Inbox dashboard makes it easy and efficient to respond to messages you receive and keep those patients engaged.
3. Avoid Spam Filter Flags
Sending mass texts can cause a few red flags for mobile carriers that prevent your messages from ever reaching your patients’ phones. Follow these rules to help your broadcast texts reach your patients:
- Avoid all caps
- Avoid shortening links you send with services like TinyURL or Bit.ly
- Don’t send messages too often
- Avoid resending the same message multiple times
Most importantly, treat all texts (even broadcast messages) like friendly, professional marketing communication that you would want to receive. If it looks or sounds spammy, it probably is!
4. Include Opt-Out Instructions on Non-Health-Related Texts
Anyone receiving your messages needs clear instructions should they no longer desire to receive texts from you. As a phone user yourself, we’re sure you’ve seen opt-out messaging at the end of text messages. Typically, it says something like “Text STOP to opt out.”
Partner with Zingit; we’ll help you understand which messages need opt-out instructions.
5. Write Engaging Messaging, So People Don’t Opt Out!
You don’t want to be considered spam! So your broadcast messages should contain important information only. Carefully consider how you word broadcast messages and the purpose of sending the message before you text all your patients. Being purposeful with your language will help you write relevant and valuable text.
6. Familiarize Yourself with Compliance Laws
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) helps to protect consumers from “junk” messages that are bothersome.
The TCPA isn’t just a general guideline. The rules come with huge fines for violations. Typically, violations carry a penalty between $500 and $1,500 per incident. So, the punishment for texting 50 patients would total $25,000 to $75,000 in penalty fines.
Nonetheless, healthcare exemptions apply to sending bulk messages.
You can partner with Zingit, who is familiar with TCPA and HIPAA regulations. We can help you understand Opt-In rules, as well as how to become familiar with the best practices in sending broadcast messages to patients.
7. Timing Matters for Bulk Messages
You should always be aware of sending your patients the right amount of messages (i.e., don’t send broadcast messages too often). Furthermore, sending texts during normal business hours is common sense texting. Avoid evenings, busy times of day, or times patients would typically consider “family time.”
What’s the Best Tool to Reach Every Patient with Broadcast Bulk Messages
Zingit can help you make every message count to engage patients more than ever before and fill that calendar! Our chiropractic practice growth software is packed with tools to help you at every step of the patient journey.
Schedule your demo now to learn more about how Zingit can help.