How to Use SMS for Mental Health Communication in Schools
August 17, 2020
We know it, and you know it: School is demanding, and not just for the students! Teachers, parents, and more all face a varying degree of pressure during the school year. If you add in the current uncertainty of schooling due to COVID-19, that stress skyrockets.
Luckily, schools and universities can tap into the power of SMS marketing to promote a healthier environment for their entire network’s mental health. SMS is cost-effective, instant, and packs a punch in terms of response rates. All you need to get started is some excellent campaign ideas and a reliable platform.
Keep reading for ideas on mental health communication utilizing SMS and our pick for a tool (spoiler alert: we may have built it!)
SMS platforms provide you dedicated phone numbers, either in the form of a traditional number or a shortcode. Having a number like this opens up the doors of communication. In fact, everyone in your school can be set up to message it and have their voices heard. They simply text in their problem to receive immediate advice or guidance on their issue. Then, you can engage in 1:1 messaging for more engagement. You can allow them to remain anonymous to encourage more user participation. If they do provide their name, you should use it for a more personalized touch.
Not everyone in your school will actively reach out for help when they feel overwhelmed. If you run into this problem, you can try proactively to reach out. After you’ve received written consent to communicate via text with your student, teacher, parent, or whomever, send them messages seeing how they’re doing or feeling. If they respond, you can engage in a two-way conversation. If they don’t, wait a few days or weeks to send a similar follow-up text.
Daily Quotes or Tips
Do you have a favorite saying or proverb that puts you in a positive mood? If so, try texting it to your school community. Starting the day off, whether in person or remote, with a strong, uplifting message may help someone. If you don’t have a quote you want to send, you can try a tip proven to impact mental health (i.e., eating a healthy lunch or getting in a walk). Whatever the content is, a regular cadence could have a lasting impact. However, if you find people unsubscribing or not responding, be sure to switch gears!
Reminders About Services
Some students who need someone to talk to may not be aware that there’s free counseling on school grounds or via video chat. With SMS, you can quickly push out reminders or notifications about on-campus mental health offerings. Be sure to give out location information, including times and dates – but don’t give any personal information about a student’s health. For some schools or universities, you may have different services for teachers or staff related to their company benefits. Keep them in the loop as well!
Our Pick for An Easy, SMS Platform: SMSZap
SMSZap, powered by Lynton, is an SMS marketing automation platform built natively for HubSpot that non-HubSpot users can also utilize. SMSZap makes sending texts to your students, teachers, parents, and more, easy with features like:
Bulk messaging automation
Allowed send time management
Simple pay-as-you-go pricing
If you’re ready to connect with your school network and encourage better mental health through SMS communication, reach out. We can go over SMSZap in more detail and get you started on the right foot with onboarding.