Your college's CRM is a powerful tool in your communication strategy. But using your CRM instead of a texting platform to engage with students is complicated and might cause problems.
Here are some of the drawbacks to texting with your CRM.
Permission levels create roadblocks
With a CRM, access to information is based on permission levels. Different staff members might be restricted from accessing CRM functions. When tasking your staff to use a CRM texting function, it might not be a matter of whether they are capable but whether they have actual permission to do certain things.
It is up to senior members of your staff to circumvent permission restrictions, adding another level of work to your texting strategy. With a separate texting platform, you don’t have to cut through the weeds of access and permission levels.
Ease of use
When deciding whether to use a texting platform or the text function of your CRM, it’s important to keep your team in mind. If texting isn’t easy, it’s going to create problems. Those problems get in the way of helping students. Texting platform features such as mobile apps, texting templates, automation, etc., save valuable staff time and improve student engagement.
Plus, if your team experiences any amount of turnover, training becomes a concern. Consider how easy the learning curve is for a CRM texting feature and whether or not it would benefit your college to have a dedicated texting expert to help your staff.
CRM texting brings carrier violation risks
When you’re texting ten thousand students, the texts do not go out all at once. Those texts need to be throttled or stalled a bit in order to avoid carrier violations. When texting with a CRM, you will need to add delay functions and throttle large groups of texts manually or you risk having numbers blocked.
With a texting feature, your text messages are automatically throttled and sent in an efficient manner. You can also take advantage of functions such as scheduling and segmenting texts to ease the workload of your staff.
Budgets are a reality
The benefits of texting with your CRM are plain to see - you’re using technology that you’re already paying for and you have everything in one place with one system. When using your CRM to text, you have to factor in incremental fees and countless hours in staff time. Plus, a texting platform like Cadence integrates with your CRM, allowing you to easily use data to communicate with students.
If you’ve never texted with your CRM before, you’re going to need to learn how to do so - and then train your staff to do so. Considering you will not have a ton of support for this task, it can be daunting. When there’s an issue in texting with your CRM, you are on your own.
It can’t be overstated how important it is to have the ability to reach out to a dedicated expert when you need help. If you’ve ever frantically poured over help articles to solve a time-sensitive problem, you know how valuable it is to have a client success team in your corner.
Utilizing data is critical
It should be easy to pull and use data from your school’s CRM for your text communications, but that is not the case. Your CRM is built as a tool to store student data, not as a tool for communicating with students. Knowing which texts are working and which are not working is a struggle.
You will be able to see that you’ve sent a text through your CRM but you will not know how that text has performed. A texting platform like Cadence allows you to easily view crucial texting metrics in your dashboard.
In order to use and report on important data such as reply rates and click-through rates, you have to manually run reports and decipher the information. If you can’t adapt your texting strategy, you will lose students.
The goal is to reach students
Outcomes are important. Higher ed professionals are tasked with helping as many students as possible with limited resources. It makes sense to consider using your CRM to text. Ultimately, you have to decide if your school wants to text students or reach students.