How To Engage Constituents with Campaign Text Messaging

Staffer smiling while using campaign text messaging

Many of today’s constituents are too busy to attend rallies or look up information about your campaign online. In some cases, they may not be able to leave their homes to connect with your advocates due to health concerns or full-time responsibilities. That’s where campaign text messaging comes into play. 

Texts are the fastest way to reach your constituents. They have an open rate of 98% and an average response time of 90 seconds. Plus, they are easy for your teams to use. Political campaign texting allows your team members to send, receive, and manage texts from hundreds or hundreds of thousands of constituents. 

So how can you use campaign text messaging to engage constituents? Let’s dive in. 

Send Personalized Mass Texts 

Political campaign text messages shouldn’t seem like they were sent from bots. With today’s technology, your team can send personalized texts to a list of constituents. 

First, ensure your recipients have opted in to receive your texts. They’ll need to text in with a keyword or click a box in a web form. Then, create a basic template. Be sure that template includes space for custom fields. Once you click “send,” your campaign text messaging platform will use merge tokens to insert each constituent’s custom fields into outgoing texts. This way, each text will seem as though it was sent individually. 

A basic template might look like this: 

Hello {{first name}}, Sammy from Ken Brown’s Office here. This is a reminder that vote-by-mail ballots are due tomorrow. Can I count on you to vote? Text back to reply, or text STOP to stop receiving messages.

Target Small Groups 

People connect with content they can relate to. You need to target smaller groups if you want to create more appealing mass texts. 

Segment your campaign text messaging lists as much as possible. Consider dividing people into groups based on location or past voting experience. The smaller your lists, the more you can target your messages.

A targeted template send to a small Southern township might look like this:

Hello {{first name}}, this is Sammy from Ken Brown’s office. I want to ensure you’ve heard his story. It’s similar to most people’s {{city}} experience. As a Southerner, it sure moved me. Have you heard it yet? Text back to reply, or text STOP to stop receiving messages. 

Answer Questions Quickly 

Once you send your initial political campaign text message, you’ll start receiving replies. Answer as quickly as possible to keep your constituents engaged. Campaign text messaging platforms already offer some tools to help. 

Shared inboxes enable all team members to see incoming texts and answer them without letting any slip through the cracks. Private comments allow team members to coordinate on chats behind the scenes. Finally, auto replies let constituents know when you’ll be in the office. Auto replies can even answer basic questions, giving your team more time to make connections.

An auto reply sent after hours might look like this: 

Hello there, Ken Brown’s office here. We’ve received your text and will answer within 1 business day. Our hours are 9-5, Monday through Friday. Text STOP to stop receiving messages. 

Have Real Conversations 

The best way to get constituents on your side is to form a real connection with them. 

As soon as constituents ask a question or respond to a text, don’t just answer their questions—engage them in a chat. They will know they have a real, live person on the other side of their phones, and may feel open to talking. 

A conversation starter may look like this:

Hi there {{first name}}, thanks for responding to our survey. I’m interested in your response. Can we give you any information that might help you decide on a candidate? Text back to reply, or text STOP to stop receiving messages. 

Follow Up Later

If someone hasn’t answered a text, that’s no reason to give up on them. Constituents might not realize that a real person is waiting on them to respond. With campaign text messaging, you can quickly and easily send a series of follow-ups. 

Set up SMS drip campaigns to circle in again. These political campaign text messages can be sent on a schedule of your choice. You can set your platform to remove constituents from the list once constituents answer or complete another designated action. 

A follow-up might look like this:

Hi {{first name}}. This is Sammy again, from Ken Brown’s campaign. Is now a better time to chat about the upcoming election? Text back to reply, or text STOP to stop receiving messages. 

 

Want more pointers on political text messaging? Learn more here.

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