Recent research has found that 5 billion people worldwide can send and receive SMS text messages, making up around 65 percent of the global population. While texting has become an all-purpose communication and marketing tool, using the power of SMS as a text alert system is a fast and effective way to convey critical information at a moment’s notice.
Text alerts are also known as SMS alerts or SMS notifications. Today we’ll go over what an SMS text alert system is, how to set up an emergency SMS alert system and include some sample emergency text messages for you to use.
What Is an SMS Alert System?
An SMS alert system is a tool that allows you to quickly transmit critical information and alerts to a group of people.
You can use a text alert system to inform employees, customers or team members about emergencies, important deadlines, schedule changes or safety hazards. Text alerts help keep people updated on developing situations, prevent confusion and misinformation and promote safety.
How to Set Up an Emergency SMS Alert System
There are three basic steps in setting up an emergency SMS alert system:
- Choose an SMS platform
- Build a subscriber list
- Start sending emergency texts as needed
1. Choose an SMS Platform
Finding the right SMS software that fits your business’s unique needs is the first step. By having a system already in place, your business can easily send emergency alerts to your entire subscriber list with just a few clicks.
The most effective SMS platform will have various features to help you get in touch with your subscribers. Some of the most valuable features include:
- Mass group texting
- Auto-reply texts
- Two-way SMS
- Unlimited subscribers
Most SMS platform features are designed with speed, efficiency and convenience in mind. For example, Textedly’s two-way SMS allows your subscribers to return text replies so you can answer any questions they may have.
2. Build a Subscriber List
First, you must ensure that customers opt-in to your text message communications. Getting express written permission to text consumers is the most important rule of SMS marketing compliance.
One of the most effective ways to build your SMS subscriber list is with simple features like SMS text keywords and text to join. For example, by sending a text keyword like JOIN to your business’s 10-digit number or short code, people can quickly sign up to receive text messages from your organization.
A user-friendly platform like Textedly also enables you to segment your subscriber list by location, department or other demographics. For example, suppose an emergency text alert should reach only a small group of people. In that case, you can segment your SMS list so your messages will reach only people who need that information.
3. Start Sending Emergency Texts as Needed
As a communication channel, SMS text messaging allows businesses to disseminate urgent messages to their subscribers quickly. Here are seven examples of SMS alert messages to help you use your emergency SMS alert system.
Hazardous Weather Alerts
A text alert system is beneficial when warnings about inclement weather need to go out as fast as possible.
URGENT: The campus is closed today due to the snowstorm. Stay off the roads and shelter in place.
Due to heavy flooding, bus services have been stopped. Stay inside and seek alternative transportation if necessary.
Many unexpected events could shut down your business, from a power outage to a system failure. Even planned office closures might require sending a quick reminder. By sending text message alerts to your employees and customers, you can even keep them updated about the situation in real-time.
NOTICE: The office will be closed tomorrow for scheduled maintenance. See you on Monday!
Due to the citywide power outage, our offices will be closed for the rest of the day. We apologize for any inconvenience. Please reply to this message with any questions.
As we have seen throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping people informed about a public health crisis is essential to combating misinformation and sharing updates about an ongoing situation. For businesses in the healthcare industry, you can use a text alert system to send time-sensitive messages to your clients and patients.
If you send any health-related text alerts, be sure to comply with any regulations like HIPAA that protect people’s health records and other sensitive information.
Your test results have been processed. To view your results, visit our online patient portal: [Link]
Thank you for making an appointment at the office of [Doctor Name]. Please remember to wear a mask and follow our social distancing guidelines when you come for your appointment.
Whether you’re facing an unexpected IT problem or a crucial reminder, a text alert system can help you stay connected with your employees. With 90 percent of texts read within three minutes of receiving, you can use an SMS platform to ensure that important messages do not go unread.
REMINDER: Open enrollment for employee benefits ends this Friday, 10/1. Please email HR at [Email] if you have any questions or reply to this text.
Our IT team will be coming around today to install a critical system update on all office computers. Please back up your files in advance.
Network and Power Outages
A power outage or network failure can have devastating consequences. With a text alert system, you can quickly inform people about the outage and update them on when they can expect operations to resume.
A power outage is affecting your area. For updates about the situation, visit the municipal website: [Link]
Employee Safety Check-ins
In case of a natural disaster or another emergency, staying in touch with your employees is just as crucial as any other steps you can take to prepare.
Hi [Employee Name], please check in and confirm your status by replying to this text message - [Supervisor Name]
Sometimes it’s not possible to stick to the original plan. So it’s essential to make sure your clients and your team are aware of any disruptions or setbacks that could delay your timeline. A text alert system enables you to send updates to your clients to keep them in the loop.
Hi [First Name], we ran into an unexpected issue with the hardware installation at [Office Location]. We will not complete the project for another 3 days. Please reply to this text if you have any questions.
Business Emergency? Textedly’s Got Your Back
With a text alert system, businesses can get in touch with employees, clients, business partners and community members in an emergency. If you’re ready to set up an emergency notification system, Textedly can help.
Textedly’s powerful SMS marketing platform offers a broad range of customizable features, including text scheduling, two-way SMS and automatic replies. Our easy-to-use platform allows you to send a mass text or schedule a series of messages with just a few clicks.
Get started with a free trial today to discover how Textedly can help you develop a text alert system.