The Complete Peer to Peer Texting Guide

What is P2P Texting?

Peer-to-peer texting (P2P texting), also known as textbanking, has emerged as a powerful communication tool for organizations seeking to engage their audience effectively. Unlike traditional text blasts or mass messaging, peer-to-peer texting fosters personalized, two-way conversations through direct text exchanges between the organization's representatives and individual recipients.

P2P Texting vs. Text Blasts

This approach stands in stark contrast to text blast campaigns, where the same generic message gets broadcasted to a large list of recipients with no opportunity for interaction. Peer-to-peer texting platforms facilitate tailored messaging and real-time dialogue, enabling volunteers or staff to have contextual conversations aligned with each person's interests and concerns. The "peer-to-peer" nature makes the communication feel more authentic and engaging.

High Open Rates - Cutting Through the Noise

Organizations leverage peer-to-peer texting to cut through digital noise and connect with their audiences on a more intimate, immediate channel. With SMS open rates exceeding 90%, a P2P SMS campaign has a far higher likelihood of being seen compared to other outreach methods. The conversational style creates a feedback loop, allowing organizations to gather data-driven insights and refine strategies accordingly.

Peer-to-peer texting facilitates authentic conversations by having real individuals craft and send messages, providing a sense of genuine interaction that helps build trust. The human element nurtures meaningful dialogue, resulting in higher open rates as recipients are inclined to read personal, sincere messages.

Moreover, the interactive, two-way nature fosters engagement through back-and-forth discussions, clarifications, and personalized assistance - making recipients more likely to continue the dialogue.

Prioritizing 10DLC Compliance

Compliance is crucial for any text messaging endeavor in the United States. Peer-to-peer texting platforms like Solidarity Tech employ 10DLC (10-digit long code) numbering to improve deliverability and align with carrier policies. The 10DLC regulation system, adopted by major U.S. carriers, governs the use of 10-digit phone numbers for application-to-person messaging to reduce spam and ensure proper consent.

Solidarity Tech seamlessly handles 10DLC registration during signup, ensuring strict adherence to guidelines like prior consent, easy opt-out methods, and no inappropriate content - protecting both the organization and recipients.

This comprehensive guide covers the full process for executing an effective peer-to-peer (P2P) texting campaign using Solidarity Tech's robust texting capabilities.

1. Define Your P2P Texting Campaign Goals

The first step is clearly defining the goals and objectives for your text outreach campaign. Common uses include:

Event Promotion and RSVPs

  • Invite supporters to rallies, meetings, or other upcoming events
  • Capture RSVP commitments via text response

Advocacy Campaigns & Direct Calls to Action

  • Mobilize your base to take action (call reps, sign petitions, etc.)
  • Provide easy "text to signup" entrypoints for campaigns

Relationship Building and Engagement

  • Check in with supporters and nurture relationships over text
  • Gather feedback and input via text surveys

Fundraising and Donations

  • Include donation links/payment info in automated text flows
  • Nurture and upgrade cash donors over text

In addition to being used on organizing and political campaigns, peer-to-peer texting is commonly used for a variety of tasks, like alumni engagement and fundraising for universities and alumni associations. The personal, text-based communication aligns with alumni association best practices by facilitating direct outreach, event promotion, surveying, and donation solicitation

2. Prepare Your Text Content

Draft an Engaging Initial Text Message

When drafting the initial text message that will go out to your targeted supporters, keep these best practices in mind:

  • Always include a clear call-to-action question to encourage response/engagement
  • Keep it concise - around 1-3 brief sentences max
  • Utilize merge fields to dynamically personalize the text with the recipient's name, location, etc.
  • Consider including engaging visuals like images, GIFs, or video thumbnails

Solidarity Tech provides helpful message "hints" with proven tips on crafting high open rate texts as you draft the initial message.The phone number the initial text comes from will be automatically associated with the user's local chapter, ensuring it's a recognizable local number for supporters.

Peer-to-peer texting platform showing analysis checklist for effective textbanking techniques

Set Up Multi-Lingual Initial Messages

For multi-lingual outreach, you can draft versions of the initial text message in all languages you need to target. Solidarity Tech will ensure volunteers only text supporters in their preferred language.

Create RSVP Follow-Up Templates

If your textbanking campaign involves promoting an event, you'll want to create tailored follow-up template responses based on if supporters RSVP "Yes", "No", or "Maybe" to the initial text.

Draft General Follow-Up Templates

In addition to RSVP-specific templates, you can create general approved text templates for volunteers to use when continuing conversations, providing information, answering questions, and more.Solidarity Tech's text template interface allows you to draft and save templates for any scenario, ensuring your team stays on-brand and provides consistent messaging.

Drafting a compelling text message for a gas petition in textbanking software

3. Decide Which Contacts to Target

One of the keys to an effective peer to peer texting campaign is ensuring your messages reach the right supporters at the right time. With Solidarity Tech's powerful filtering tools, you can precisely target specific segments of your contact database.

Leverage Comprehensive Filter Options

Define your target audience using any combination of filters like:

  • Location (country, state, city, zip code)
  • Language preferences
  • Previous event attendance
  • Engagement levels (open rates, click rates, etc.)
  • Custom data fields and properties
  • Tags and list memberships
  • Mobile subscription status

Selecting targeted audience for a text outreach campaign by zip code and language

Create Dynamic Segment Rules

Go beyond basic filters by building dynamic rules to define precise audience segments, such as:

  • Supporters in California who attended last year's rally
  • Spanish speakers who haven't opened an email in 6 months
  • Recurring donors in Atlanta who haven't taken action recently

4. Recruit and Train Textbankers

Highlight the Impact

Organizers must clearly explain the goals and importance of the P2P text messaging campaigns to effectively recruit volunteers. Emphasize how their personal outreach will drive meaningful action.

Set Volunteer Expectations

Outline the specific policies, time commitments, and responsibilities that volunteers must follow when textbanking, such as:

  • Monitoring and quickly responding to incoming reply messages
  • Sending only approved text content/templates
  • Adhering to texting hours and compliance rules

Provide Training on Peer-to-Peer Texting Workflows

Train volunteers on the end-to-end process of P2P texting using Solidarity Tech:

  1. Accessing their assigned P2P text campaign workflow
  2. Sending the initial text message
  3. Fielding and promptly responding to all incoming reply messages
  4. Utilizing RSVP buttons & follow-up text templates
  5. Notifying an organizer to re-assign conversations if they cannot continue the text exchange

Confirming RSVPs: Guidance for Textbanking

When gathering RSVPs through textbanking, it's crucial to be clear about what constitutes a "Yes." Some responses might seem positive but don't necessarily indicate commitment. Here are key points to stress when training volunteers on textbanking RSVPs:

  • Emojis and Imprecise Responses: A thumbs-up emoji (👍) or a question like "What time is the event?" should not be taken as a "Yes." These responses are not confirmation and should not be marked as such.

  • Seeking a Firm Commitment: To ensure a clear "Yes," ask for a confident response. A question like, "Can we count on you being there in person?" often helps distinguish between a genuine "Yes" and a "Maybe." Only mark a contact as "Yes" when they clearly confirm attendance.

  • Identifying Doubtful Responses: If there's any uncertainty or hesitation, treat it as a "Maybe." This conservative approach avoids overestimating attendance and ensures your data reflects true commitment.

By training volunteers to recognize and handle these distinctions, your textbanking campaigns will be more effective in gathering accurate RSVPs and improving event turnout.

Replying Immediately or Marking Messages as Unread

It's important to note that once a volunteer opens/reads an incoming text message, it will automatically be marked as "read." If they cannot immediately respond:

  • They must tap and hold the message
  • Then select "Mark as Unread"

This ensures the conversation remains accessible in their "Workflows" tab to respond to later.

Volunteer managing mobile text marketing responses in a textbanking app

Encourage Consistent Monitoring

Make it clear that sending the initial text is just the beginning. The real work is quickly responding to supporter replies as they come in, potentially over 24-48 hours.Advise volunteers to:

  • Enable push notifications to be alerted of new incoming messages
  • Regularly check the "Workflows" tab in the mobile app
  • Schedule time to consistently monitor and respond to conversations

Once you have your volunteers comitted to textbanking, add them to the team of your Solidarity Tech textbank and they'll see the assignment in their Workflows tab in the mobile app.

Workflow interface on a mobile app for scheduling text broadcasts in a textbank campaign

5. Execute Your Textbank

Initiate Text Outreach in Batches

Volunteers will kick off the live peer to peer texting by sending the initial text message in batches of their choosing from the mobile app:

  • Send batches of 25, 50, or 100 texts at a time
  • Volunteers can send multiple batches
  • But must be prepared to promptly field all incoming replies

The more text batches a volunteer sends, the greater their future time commitment will be to manage the response conversations.

Start conversations text messaging interface in a textbanking app with pre-send confirmation checklist

Monitor Outreach Team Activity

As an organizer, you can monitor your team's overall textbanking activity through the dashboard:

  • See total texts sent by each volunteer
  • View the number of unread/pending reply messages
  • Identify volunteers who may need assistance

If volunteers have an excessive number of unanswered texts, reach out to see if they need support fielding the high reply volume or reassign conversations as needed.

Respond to Incoming Messages

The key to effective peer-to-peer texting is quickly responding to all incoming messages from supporters. Volunteers should:

  • Enable push notifications to be alerted of new replies
  • Regularly check the Workflows tab for pending conversations
  • Utilize approved text templates to continue conversations
  • Reassign conversations if they cannot promptly respond

Ensure Compliance with Texting Hours

Set allowable texting hours and windows to ensure your nonprofit text messaging campaign remains compliant with regulations like TCPA.

By executing your textbank with focused effort, consistent monitoring, and automated workflows, you'll maximize two-way engagement while operating efficiently.

6. Review Metrics and Optimize

Dashboard showing text campaign metrics for a political text outreach initiative

After the team members start receiving replies to their textbank messages, it's crucial to analyze the performance data and results to identify areas for improvement on your next campaign.

Evaluate Initial Text Message Response Rate

Check the overall response rate to your initial text message blast. Around 10% is considered a decent response rate.If your rate was lower, you may need to optimize the content, send time, or other variables of that initial message by leveraging Solidarity Tech's "message hints."

Identify Top Performing Textbankers

Review which volunteers were most reliable and effective at fielding incoming reply messages without leaving excessive texts unread.Provide positive reinforcement to those top performers and have them lead training sessions to share best practices.

Assess Goal Completion

If your P2P text campaign involved event promotion, check the RSVP and attendance numbers directly in the dashboard. For advocacy campaigns, analyze metrics like:

  • Number of petition signatures received

  • Clicks on call-to-action links

  • Noted supporter interests and comments

Determine if you achieved your outreach goals based on those metrics.

Gather Volunteer Feedback

Send a survey to all P2P texting volunteers to gather their feedback on the process, tools, and areas for improvement.Their firsthand experiences are invaluable for optimizing training, messaging, and overall execution.

Take all the data, feedback, and lessons learned from this campaign and apply them when planning your next textbanking initiative. Consistent optimization is key.