How to Send Texts via TouchPoint¶
Before you can send texts, you must have completed the steps in the following articles:
Also, you will need to have people opted-in to receive texts.
See the Tracking Text section below to see how you can know who received your texts.
Send a Text¶
When texting using the Twilio integration with TouchPoint, you send texts from your computer directly from your church’s TouchPoint database.
- Step 1
Find the people you want to text.
You can send a text from wherever you see the blue Toolbar. That is, from an individual’s record, an organization, a sub-group within an organization, a Tag, or from Search Builder results.
From the blue Toolbar select Envelope > SMS > Send Text.
- Step 2
Select the Group from which you are texting.
In the example below, the group is Staff. If you have only one number for texting, you will have only one group.
Enter the Title of your text. This is not seen in the text, but will be helpful when you are viewing the tracking on the Manage SMS Messages page.
Enter your Message. You may want to include DO NOT REPLY. Keep the message brief.
If you enter text that is longer than 1600 characters, it will truncate the text. So, be sure to note the character count before sending.
If you desire to schedule the text rather than send it immediately, check the box for Schedule Text? and set the date and time when the text should be sent. Note that the process sending out scheduled texts checks for them every five minutes. So texts may not necessarily be sent at the exact minute they are scheduled, but should be sent within five minutes of the schedule.
Click Send SMS
Be sure to notice the sending count at the top of that dialog box. Texts will not be sent to anyone who has not opted-in for texting or does not have a cell phone on their record.
Do not copy and paste into the message text box. This may pick up formatting that, once the text is sent, can use more characters than are indicated. This may cause your message to be split into multiple messages. The best practice is to type the message directly into the text box.
- Step 3
After sending the text, send a follow-up email (optional) to the same people by clicking the Click Here link.
By following the text with an email, you ensure that anyone who was not included to receive the text (hasn’t opted in or has no cell phone) can receive your message via email. This will send to the entire group, even if they received the text.
Your original text message will display as the body of the email. You can send it as it is, or edit it at that point.
Any time a URL has the protocol included (e.g., the
https:// prefix), it will be
automatically shortened when the text is sent. This includes the Special Links mentioned above, as
well as any other URL you enter with the protocol.
This page is limited to just those with the Admin role.
After your text and email have been sent, you can view a report about your message.
Go to Administration > Communication > SMS Messages. This is where you will see a list of the SMS messages that have been sent. If you opted to send the email after the text, you will track those just like any other TouchPoint email.
You can use the Start and End Dates to filter for a date range. The Title you entered when you created your text is what appears to identify your text in the report.
Click the Details button in the Action column to see a list of those who were in your group of recipients, their cell phone number, whether or not they were sent the text and the reason why, if they did not receive it.
Added instructions in Step 2 for scheduling a text; added sections about including Special Links in the message body and about URL shortening