Adult education centers and community colleges are important contributors to cultural life and education in our society. People with a wide variety of preferences and interests take advantage of the courses that are offered. From hobbies to professional training, from children to seniors, whether beginners or advanced – there is something for everyone here. Where so many different people come together, communication needs to be excellent. That’s why we ask ourselves: How can adult education centers use SMS to make their programs more attractive?
How adult education centers use SMS to make their programs more attractive
Service for those interested
Especially when interested parties want to book a course at your adult education center for the first time, the processes can be somewhat obscure. Often, for example, it is not immediately apparent when a new program will be released. An SMS service that informs interested parties about it therefore ensures that your new program is popular immediately and that your future learners are satisfied because they can immediately register for their desired courses.
A text message for those on waiting lists is also appreciated and ensures that places that free up are allocated more quickly. In this way, those who have moved up can decide quickly if they actually still want to participate, and the place can be released again under certain circumstances.
In both scenarios, SMS is a good choice because it is read so quickly and is very personal. This improves learner satisfaction and retention at your institution.
When adult education centers use SMS to keep interested learners informed, they can improve the effectiveness of operations and increase retention.
Service for learners
Many adult education centers send emails to participants to inform them that their course is about to start or if it has to be cancelled on a certain date. Certainly, an email is not a bad choice; what matters in this case is timing.
For example, sending an email with information several days before the course starts is usually quite sufficient. However, if a course has to be cancelled at short notice or there is a room change, it is likely that some participants will not read a corresponding email in time. SMS, on the other hand, are usually opened only a few minutes after they are received.
When in doubt, it’s best to give your customers the choice. Let them decide for themselves how they want to be informed when they sign up.
Even in these use cases, the relevance of the SMS is an advantage, ensuring that the message is read very quickly and does not get lost among dozens of other messages, as is occasionally the case with emails, for example.
Some adult education centers use SMS already to notify course members, for example at the VHS Landkreis Lichtenfels.
Good organization is simple and effective. That’s why it’s not surprising that SMS is particularly popular for organizational messages. Here, too, the high read and open rate is an advantage. Be it a payment reminder, a booking confirmation or a link to an ordered voucher – with an automated SMS, your customers are always well informed and can react promptly should there be a problem.
If you want to send automated SMS at your adult education center, you can connect our service via webhooks, for example. Simply create webhooks in our web application under the menu item Developers. If a third-party automation provider is an option for you, you can also find our service on IFTTT and Zapier.
Queries via SMS
You can offer a special service to interested parties and learners if you make it possible for them to ask questions. If adult education centers can receive SMS, they offer a low-threshold way to get in touch. This benefits all interested parties, but especially those who feel more comfortable composing a message but still don’t want to give up the immediacy of the message.
Not sure where to start? Allow interested parties to ask questions about the program or offer a kind of support channel. This way, even last-minute questions can be resolved quickly.
Should adult education centers use SMS?
As you can see, there are many reasons why adult education centers should include SMS in their communication strategy. In situations where very different people need to be reached quickly and reliably, SMS still shines. It reaches every cell phone without additional effort and is read within minutes. With the appropriate SMS gateway provider, it is also easy to comply with the GDPR.
In short: When adult education centers use SMS, they can increase the satisfaction of interested parties and learners and additionally improve their processes.
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All the best
Header picture by Kar-Tr via iStock