Communicating in a Crisis

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Sometimes we need to get a message out to the church quickly…
All across the world many churches are having to communicate quickly to their people that they can’t meet because of the current Covid-19 crisis. We sent out an email yesterday to let our people know we are still meeting and today I’m getting SMS with people asking!

When the message needs to get out and be read by people I have learnt over years, email is not very reliable. People just don’t read them (apart from you!), because they don’t check them or the subject line wasn’t compelling enough. But people do immediately check their phone when it pings with an SMS or push notification.

The Church Admin plugin allows you to do both easily…

SMS

Firstly set up an account with www.bulksms.com – there are loads of companies that provide a bulks sms service, but when I first added SMS messaging they were the cheapest worldwide provider and I think still are pretty competitive.
Add some credits onto the account – https://www2.bulksms.com/home/commerce/
Set your sender id to your mobile number https://www2.bulksms.com/home/change_sender_id/
Then get your username and password combination added to your Church Admin plugin installation

Church Admin > Communication > SMS Setup

You need to put your country code into 44 for UK, 1 for the US etc – a list is at https://countrycode.org/

Then you will be able to send SMS messagesto your congregation. Each SMS costs a credit from your account.

Push Notifications

Is another efficient way of communicating with the congregation in an emergency for subscribers to the app.
Push notifications are like SMS messages that are received by iOS and Android devices. They are free – included in your app subscription. Just write your message and everyone that has the app will get it!

The app is free for your congregation to install on their phones and a low monthly/annual subscription for the church itself. Please head over to the App menu item on your Church Admin or www.churchadminplugin.com/app to subscribe.
It’s 6pm in the UK as I write this – if you want to get crisis communication ready do it now (before 11pm GMT) and I’ll get you activated tonight so you can let people know the Our Church app download links tomorrow morning and start communicating in a crisis well.

Stay safe! And look after the vulnerable in your communities – remembering 2 Tim 1:7 “For you have not been given a spirit of fear, but of power,love and a sound mind.”