Not all e-communications platforms are created equal…and that’s OK. We hear all the time from districts who are currently using their notification platform for sending out PDF or basic HTML versions of their school or district newsletter. The challenge is, different systems have different purposes and using the wrong platform in the wrong situation can have negative effects on your ability to communicate with your intended audience. Those negative effects can multiply rapidly for school districts who need to get clear communications out to their various stakeholders.
When your district needs to alert parents of an immediate situation, such as a snow day or building emergency, you want to make sure that you’re using a system built for relaying that information right away to as many people as possible. There are notification systems out there built for exactly those communication needs. They can efficiently get a text message or a short email out to those who need to know. Email newsletter providers, such as MarketVolt, are not designed for these types of communications.
On the flip-side, notification platforms are generally not designed to handle the key aspects of a district’s email newsletter – disseminating large amounts of curated information and images in a mobile friendly format to specific groups within your audience. Nor are most those notification systems designed, or capable of, providing metrics around the opens and clicks of those recipients. Worst of all, if a parent opts out of an email newsletter sent through a basic notification system, they are opted out of ALL communications – even emergencies – rendering the system useless for that family.
With MarketVolt, not only are your parents protected from opting out of emergency information, we allow your contacts the ability to opt out of certain types emails without opting out from all of your email newsletters. There’s no “all or nothing” unless the contact specifically chooses so. If a parent wants to stop receiving newsletters from the district, but still wants the newsletter from their child’s school, they can choose what emails they get and what they don’t want to be bothered with any longer.
On top of that, many of the notification tools make it hard (if not impossible) for folks outside of your existing communication circle of staff and parents to join your mailing list. There is no place to store their email in most notification systems so there is no way to keep your community in the mix with what is happening within your district. So rather than inviting your district community into your communication mix to keep them in the loop so they’re supporters during the next bond issue or tax initiative, they are forced to hunt for information on your social media channels and digging around on your website.
If you’d like to learn more about how email newsletter platforms such as MarketVolt can complement, rather than compete with, your e-notification system, join us for one of our short, introductory K12 webinars by clicking here.