Communicate with a list of people by sending them a text message! All texts are stored on the messaging page as well as the Communication tab of any profile. Replies are not allowed.
Check out this clip from Planning Center University.
Texting is only available to US customers. If you are an international customer, we recommend you use a third party.
Enable Text Messaging
To enable text messaging, an Organization Administrator can choose the amount of credits to purchase from the Products page in Accounts, and then click Purchase Credits, and the card on file will be charged immediately.
Credits never expire and are not automatically renewed. If you run out of credits, you'll be prompted to buy more from the place you compose the message.
In order to use text messaging, you must have a credit card on file. You cannot pay for text message credits by check.
A credit is one text message consisting of up to 160 standard characters to one recipient. If your message uses special characters like emojis, the message size limit will decrease. Social characters are any characters not found in the GSM-7 encoding standard.
You will always know how many credits a message will require before it is sent.
Before you send a text message to someone, collect their permission to do so. Permission can be collected in many ways, including verbally, written, or electronically.
Now that you've enabled text messaging, encourage your congregation to save the phone number, so they know when your church is contacting them!
Send a Text
You can only send text messages from a list. From the list results tab, click the message icon, and then choose Send text message.
Text messages can only be sent to lists of people by Managers and Editors or Viewers who have Can send text messages enabled.
Enter the message, and then click Send text message.
- The number of characters you've used.
- The number of credits you'll be using.
- The number of credits you have left. If the list hast more people than you have credits, an Organization Administrator can purchase more credits from the Products Page.
What Can or Cannot Be Sent in a Text?
- You can send URLs! Use a link shortener to limit the characters. On smartphones, the URL will be turned into a clickable link, but phones without that capability will only show the text.
- You cannot send images.
- You cannot schedule messages.
- Keywords/two-way messaging: We don't have this ability at this time. We recommend you use a third party.
A person will receive the message from 34040 letting them know what they've been subscribed to as well as the message you sent.
You will not be charged for the subscription notification text.
If someone chooses to STOP messages, they can enable text messaging again by texting START.
If someone responds to a message, it will be discarded, and they'll receive this message.
Before we send a text to anyone, we’ll first send the standard disclaimer message that you’re used to seeing.
“You are subscribed to messages from "Example Church". Msg&Data rates may apply. Message frequency varies. Reply STOP to cancel.” ("Example Church" is of course replaced with the name of your church).
If the recipient replies with a “STOP” message, they will receive an unsubscribe confirmation text, and then no longer receive messages from your church.
Their profile will show icons that show the number is textable, but the person has unsubscribed.
If they want to receive messages again, they can text "START" to 34040.
View Sent Messages
Once a message has been sent, you can see it from the Message history page or from a person's profile.
From the Lists page, click Text message history to see all the sent text messages.
You can see the message, as well as who sent it, and how many credits it took to send. Click a message to see more detail.
If the text was undeliverable, you can click the name of the person and make changes to the phone number listed on their profile.
Messages to an Individual
If a text is successfully sent to a number marked something other than Mobile on their profile, an icon will be added to that number indicating it is textable.
If a number is unable to receive a text we've sent, you can see an icon on their profile to show the number wasn't textable.
Here are some reasons a phone number isn't textable:
- 30003 usually means their carrier doesn't allow for texts from short codes.
Some customers may be able to allow messages sent from our shortcode by texting, "Allow 34040" to 9999. However, customers from other wireless carriers will likely need to reach out to their carrier's support group to enable "Premium" or short code messaging.
- 30004 means their number is blocked. They will not receive any texts.
- 21612 means the number is not a valid US number.
If a mobile number is successfully sent a text message, you can see the icon on their profile.
From the Communication tab of someone's profile, you can see texts sent to a person.