October 22, 2012
Build Your Conference Audience with Text Messaging
When hosting a conference of any size, it's vital to communicate with your audience in an effective and efficient manner. The dissemination of conference information to various channels is essential. As a result, conferences are increasingly using text messaging to proactively and productively engage with conference attendees more because of its ubiquitous nature. Text messaging is able to reach any device whether it's a smart device or feature phone, unlike social media platforms which mostly require:
All of those points above are potential areas to lose the audience you wish to engage. Building attendance for your conference is tough enough these days, maintaining those who have attended to return next time and more importantly spread to those they know that they need to go next time as well is even harder, especially if they were feeling left out because they were made to feel less wanted due to choice. The best way to make sure you are present to your audience needs is by using technology that is available to everyone.
The SMARTER Device Choice
While the number of adults who have smart devices is on the rise (at least half of all US adults have either a tablet or phone) the number of US adults that own a feature phone still beats that group by 45 percent, which means you run the risk of alienating a very large number of your potential audience. Text messaging has the awesome ability to interact with any text enabled devices, but you don't want to stop there because only long code text messaging can engage every wireless provider as well as services such as Google (News - Alert) voice. Services such as FlexTALK SMS provide just this ability giving edge to those opting for short code services.
The BEST Connection Choice
Requiring that your audience possibly use their own data in the event Wi-Fi access is not available or not working correctly (who hasn't been to a conference and witnessed firsthand the 'free' Wi-Fi available really wasn't) then you run the risk of your audience NOT engaging with you through choice whether they can or cannot. The percentage of those with smart devices and cellular data included with them is less than 60 percent so if you are providing sub-par Internet access or none at all, then that 40+ percent will not be included. Let's say you have 1000 attending, then less than 600 have an alternative to a data connection leaving more than 400 left wanting…or leaving. YIKES! Text messaging uses the cellular network which unlike data is more readily available. When looking for a text messaging solution, don't just run to your closest short code provider. Short codes can only reach one third of the 32 wireless operators in the US alone and completely alienate Google voice or Skype (News - Alert). Services using long code SMS solutions such as FlexTALK connect to all wireless providers, and Google voice, Skype or any services like them.
Service WITHOUT The Need For An App
What would you do if the app or service just wasn't there?
What is your contingency plan for tweets not working or posts to Facebook (News - Alert) failing? Text messaging works on smartphones the same as feature phones, without the need for third party services or apps. All phones come with it - nothing else required. That could be enough for this point, but let's look a little deeper. For every step you make your audience endure in order to engage and interact you lose 10 percent. Text messaging has been around for almost 20 years and everyone has already used it. Short codes, as pointed out earlier have their draw backs concerning reach, but there are more you can read here.
Long codes are simply phone numbers, but more importantly they are your phone numbers. The biggest advantage is your audience has a spot to store phone numbers, it's called contacts and how awesome is it that they can store your phone number with your name and personalize even more that interaction you are drawing them too. They could make you a favorite, they could make you a vCard to share with others, then throw in the ability to have your audience connect through a phone call and you reduce the steps to connect to you even more? The easier you make it the more they will use it! WOW! One phone number now has your audience captured and ready to go the distance with you. Try and get that from an app, or in a browser.
Your conference can excel beyond your campaign objectives and reap the success beyond your expectations simply by using text messaging with long codes through services like FlexTALK SMS. Why not contact us here and let us help you begin customizing a connection solution for your next conference TODAY!
Edited by Brooke Neuman
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