How automated texting transforms event planning

Running an event can seriously run your entire life, but it doesn’t have to.

The planning committee for Alpine Days has been managing a portion of Alpine city’s event for years. But in 2018 the committee adopted one critical tool that ended up saving over 15 hours of time in one week. Really. That tool?

Automated texting.

Slow and steady does not win

Up until 2018 they primarily managed all of their vendors and festival events via email. Sounds efficient enough, right? Everybody uses email.

Well, the first problem they ran into was most (they don’t have an exact number but would guess around 50%) of the vendors never checked their email – maybe you run into similar problems when trying to connect. Or the messages got marked as spam and never reached anyone. This meant vendors missed critical information regarding setup and breakdown times, booth assignments, space regulations, etc.

Texts average a 45% response rate and emails only 6%.

Now, imagine trying to help 150 vendors set up at the festival location within a two-hour time frame and only half of them know what they are supposed to do. Talk about chaos. That was reality for director Melanie Ewing and her team.

Pennant flags hanging between buildings.

Regular texting didn’t cut it either. Though the vast majority of texts get read – 90% in the first 3 seconds – texting individual people from large groups simply isn’t practical. It’s especially hard when you have to use your own personal number.

In 2017, one member of the Alpine Days planning committee had to quickly get all 150 vendors off the field of the event space within 30 minutes. With few options for getting the word out, she resorted to manually entering 150 phone numbers into her personal phone and then texting people in groups of 10. By the time she got all 150 messages sent, it was too late.

To really make Alpine Days great, they needed a better solution for their business process.

Messages with Skipio do

The next year, they decided to try Skipio to improve their communication. The automated features made it seem like a dream come true.

One week prior to the start of Alpine Days, they created reminder campaigns to follow up with not only their vendors but also other participants. The messages within the campaigns reminded people about anything and everything they needed to know to have a successful and fun week.

Skipio’s drip campaigns as well as appointment and event reminder campaigns allow you to schedule a specific series of messages, the delivery of future messages depending on the time the last message was sent.

A person holding up a white iPhone with the Skipio login screen open.

For example, if you schedule the first reminder message to go out 10 days before your event, you might want to schedule the second message to send 3 days after that, so a week before the event, and so forth. When you carefully plan out your messages and then schedule them, you ensure everyone stays informed while saving your future self huge amounts of time.

Through the use of campaigns, the communication that previously took Melanie 15+ hours ended up taking just over 1 hour. She was amazed.

No longer was she glued to her phone literally all day answering questions or worrying about her phone battery dying – which used to occur within mere hours every morning in the week leading up to Alpine Days.

Because of how much time Melanie saved and how organized Skipio helped her be, she was free to actually enjoy the festival with her family and friends.

But pre-festival planning wasn’t the only thing Skipio helped the Alpine Days planning committee accomplish.

Especially at the last minute

The very first day of the festival, they had a quick change and needed a way to alert 300 mountain bike race participants that they needed to pick up their bibs within 60 minutes.

Luckily, they already had racer information saved to a group in Skipio. They crafted a single message and an hour later nearly every participant had picked up their packet. But even those who weren’t able to come at that time at least replied.

Even though this message was sent to a large group of people, they personalized each message with custom fields and still had the ability to reply individually, continuing one-on-one conversations.

A person mountain biking in a forest.

And once it’s all over

To top it all off, Skipio also helped Melanie thank all of that year’s sponsors. She wrote a single text to send to everyone involved in Alpine Days to ensure they knew exactly who made it all possible. So not only was the festival a huge success for the community, all of the sponsors got a direct shoutout that basically everyone was guaranteed to read.

Even if people didn’t know why, everyone enjoyed Alpine Days more because of the automations and personalization Skipio provides.

View the full feature set to explore more ways Skipio could help you execute your next event.

About Anna Wendt !

Anna is Skipio’s Chief Content Writer and Editor. Her top strengths are Learner and Harmony. An avid boulderer, Anna is especially proud of all her calluses.

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