Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Keep in Touch...Tech Review

There used to be a day when you would pick up an actual phone, connected with wires, and you would push buttons to call an individual and to keep them up to date.  AT&T Bell Systems ran that catchy jingle to "Reach out and touch someone."

Today, IF you use a phone there are no wires and you hardly have to push any buttons with voice dialing.  The youth today, and most adults TEXT.  We have email, Facebook, Pintrest, Twitter, Blogs, etc...

So this post is for those that are running their own studio's or have groups of fitness enthusiasts you want to keep in touch with.  I have found two really easy to use and inexpensive (like totally free) solutions to help with communications.

Send hub is a Subscription based Texting solution that can be totally free as long as you have less than 100 people you want to keep in touch with and you send fewer than 300 messages / month.  (If you had a 100 people that would me 3 messages per month if you sent the message to everyone).

People sign up by sending a "keyword" that you pick to a text number that Sendhub provides for free.  After Sendhub receives that keyword they are immediately subscribed.  Each Group Text that you then send (either via their website or even from your phone) also includes the instructions on how to unsubscribe, keeping you compliant with FCC anti-spam regulations, and you don't have to establish TEXT groups on your phone.  This also works even if your phone is lost or off, and you don't have to worry about everyone getting everyone else's phone numbers, and such, or sending a broadcast blast back to everyone.

Check out www.SendHub.com

Google Groups is just an additional, totally free feature as part of Google Gmail.  Participants don't have to have a Gmail account, only the person that wants to setup the group.  

With Google Groups, you establish a group name and then send out (or provide however you like) the Group Name.  People can then subscribe by simply sending a blank email to the group email address.  They'll immediately get an email asking them to confirm that they wanted to join.  

From that point forward anyone in the group can (if setup properly) send out an email to the entire group.  This eliminates the need to manage a large database of emails, who wants to receive what, delete this person, etc...

Even more important to me is that means my email address isn't being broadcast to the entire group, to be spammed or phished later because someone had my email address and was visiting some illicit website or such.

And example might be to have a group called "SpinningFreak"  to subscribe to this group you would send an email to:      SpinningFreak+subscribe@GoogleGroups.com

With each email you receive you always get the option of opting out by unsubscribing.  Presto!  You can market to your clients and you don't have to worry about managing the email lists.

Check this out by searching on GOOGLE GROUPS

Okay, what does this have to do with Spinning.  ABSOLUTELY  NOTHING!  
But I have a lot of people that follow my blog that run their own studio and would like to mail out the instructor schedule, or maybe special events announcements to their clients.  These are both tools that I've used to keep in touch with my peeps, because let's face it not everyone is on Facebook.

~ Spinning Freak


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