Text Messaging is a Great Way to Help Those In Need
The growing usefulness of text messaging as a communication tool originally stemmed from wanting to keep in touch with friends and family. It has quickly grown to a way of interacting with businesses through mobile marketing, voting on tv shows like American Idol and more recently as a two-way method of communicating with organizations offering assistance and help.
We’re seeing it used by organizations who want to provide health advice and sex education services to teens and young adults, as a way of preventing those in desperate times who are contemplating hurting themselves or who are simply distressed by uncontrollable happenings in their surroundings, like the oil spill or natural disasters.
The three main benefits of offering text messaging as a help line service are:
1) The ability to be able to receive and reply to text messages anonymously.
Not all text messaging software providers have this option, so ask first.
2) Text messaging is more teen and young adult-friendly than phone calls or email.
A Pew study found that 63% of all teens say they exchange text messages every day with people in their lives, including their parents. Also, nearly half of all teens send and receive text messages with friends daily. 39% of teens never exchange e-mail.
3) Efficient information exchanges.
Responders can be assisting multiple people at once and also have the ability to send back specific information via text message that doesn’t need to be written down. For those with smart phones, a link to more information and data can be sent quickly, making the experience seamless.
One of our text messaging for helplines clients is the TALKWITHUS campaign. Here are some promotional pieces for those, including one from the Surgeon General.