5 steps to send your first nonprofit text campaign

First time crafting a nonprofit SMS campaign? We got you. Here's how to plan, send, and see the results of your text messages in five straightforward steps.

Launching your first nonprofit text messaging campaign? Good news — it’s easier than you think. 

If you’re wondering what the journey looks like, I’ve got a five-step plan to take you through writing, sending, and analyzing your first campaign:

  1. Decide what kind of message you want to send
  2. Pick your contact lists
  3. Write your message
  4. Send your text message
  5. Track your campaign’s performance

SimpleTexting is nonprofit text messaging software

Reach supporters, volunteers, team members, and other audiences with SMS messaging. Meaningful connections are just a text away with SimpleTexting. Get 15% off for life with our nonprofit discount.

Step 1: Decide what kind of message you want to send.

Before sending your first SMS blast, set up two important automated messages:

  1. A welcome message for new contacts
  2. A compliance message (sounds dull, but it’s important)

Start with a welcome note thanking them for joining and letting them know what to expect. Then, send a compliance message (which is free with SimpleTexting) which is required in the SMS industry and helps consumers know what they’re subscribing to.

Welcome to Feed ATL Kids! We’ll send you updates on our projects, volunteer opportunities, and donation drives.
FEEDATLKIDS: Reply STOP to unsubscribe or HELP for help. Msg & data rates may apply.

💡 Pro tip: You can add your welcome message as an auto-confirmation when you set up an SMS text-to-join keyword or as an autoresponder when a contact joins your list.

Next, select the topic of your first text message campaign. Options could include:

  • Project updates
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • Donation drives
  • Success stories

Step 2: Pick your contact lists.

Who should receive this text message? You can send your texts to an existing contact list or build a new one.

If you don’t already have text contacts, consider using opt-in methods like keywords or Web Forms.

💡 Don’t forget to get express written consent from all of your contacts. It’s an SMS compliance requirement and helps make sure everyone who is on your SMS list wants to be there.

Step 3: Write your message.

Write text messages that are short and packed with purpose. Include the most important details, and give specific instructions on next steps (like “Reply to this message to sign up.”)

💡 I recommend writing out your message in a Word or Google Doc first and running it through a grammar and spelling checker. 

If you’re stuck on what to write, try our AI Assist tool to get ideas based on the message you’re trying to convey. 

Test AI Assist out when you sign up for a free 14-day trial of SimpleTexting (no credit card required).

Step 4: Send your text message.

Ready to send your text message campaign out into the world? First, you need to create a campaign in your SMS platform. 

Here’s how it works in SimpleTexting:

  1. Head over to the “Campaigns” tab on your dashboard.
  2. Click “New campaign.”
  3. Name your campaign. (This is for your reference only.)
  4. Paste your text into the “Message” field. Want to add a photo or video? Select “MMS” under “Message type.”
  5. Choose a contact list.
  6. Decide whether to send your text right away, schedule it for later, or set up a repeating campaign.

📹 Watch this video tutorial on how to set up and schedule a campaign in SimpleTexting:

Step 5: Track your campaign’s performance

How will you know if your text resonated with your audience?

Keep tabs on how your campaign performed using the Analytics report tab in SimpleTexting. 

Monitor the results from your campaign, like:

  • Success rate for delivering your message
  • Number of responses from contacts
  • Unsubscribe rate
  • Clicks and click-through rate for any links you added

These insights will help you improve future outreach efforts.

For example, if your message sees an unsubscribe rate of more than 3%, it might not be hitting the mark. So you’ll know that you need a new approach for future text messages.

Have questions about launching your nonprofit’s first text campaign? We're here to help seven days a week. Call or text us at (888) 663-6856, or click the blue button in the bottom right corner of your screen to chat.

📌 Dive into our How to Start guide for more ideas on running successful nonprofit text campaigns.