Olivier Rousseau
29 September 2022 2 min read

When to choose SMS over email when communicating with clients

Great communications with clients, participants and families is one of the most crucial aspects of running a small business.

Texting/SMS has become widely accepted and even the preferred way for participants to receive messages from organizations.

Say you need to cancel a class or change the time at the last minute. Sending an SMS is ideal as you make sure everyone gets the information in a timely manner. Because SMS has a 98% open rate, you can rest assured almost every client will engage with your message.

We can no longer say the same about email. It is still a great communication tool that feels less intrusive than SMS and remains the best option in many context. 

When you should choose SMS over Email

After reviewing the usage of hundreds of IClassPro, Jackrabbit and Amilia users, here is where most strike a balance between Email/SMS outreach.


When you should use SMS/Texting

Texting is meant to be short and sweet, and works best for time-sensitive information and notifications. 

It is best used for:

  • Booking reminders
  • Class rescheduling
  • Class cancellations
  • Important documents needing to be signed
  • Follow up with participant who did not open your email
  • Event or free trial reminder

When you should use Email:

Email on the other end, is meant to allow for more information (i.e. parent’s guide) which is crucial in many communications. But we need to accept that there will be a significant number of recipients who will not open the message.

Email works best for information that is not time-sensitive and not a big deal if some participants missed the message.

It is best used for:

  • Purchase confirmation
  • Marketing outreach
  • Start of session reminder
  • End of session survey
  • Important communication types that are not time sensitive
    (Follow up with SMS when email was not opened)

Is this vital to my organization?

Combining Email and SMS to reach clients

If your email open rate is low, we suggest you leverage the power of SMS to reach clients who haven’t opened their email. Select unopened emails and resend the message via text message. Clients appreciate the reminder and this improves the delivery of your message.

The right mix of email vs texting

Not integrating SMS into your outreach can end up costly in the end. 58% of people say texting is the ideal way for businesses to reach them. But finding the right balance is important.

The right software can now allows you to easily select between email and SMS when communicating with a group of participants. Since you are capturing email and phone number in the registration process, both options are readily available at all times for single or lass specific bulk delivery.

This will also help when communicating with staff and applicants from Gen Z who now see SMS as their preferred channel when communicating with their employer.

How to put this into place in your organization

Gone are the days where you could rely uniquely on emails or phone calls to communicate with clients. With today’s digitally-driven consumer, participants now expect more from organizations in terms of communications. If you don’t integrate SMS into you outreach, this could impact overall customer satisfaction (even if you are a rockstar when offering your programs).

Making sure that clients and participants receive all your communications in a timely manner has never been easier. Your email open rates might have dropped over the last few years, but rest assured since receiving SMS from organizations has now become widely accepted. The right mix will lead to optimal communications.

What to look for in a class management software

You need a software that can do the following steps effortlessly when it comes to communications:

  • Select between email and/or SMS for any outreach
  • Track open rates
  • Create SMS/email templates that can be adapted
  • Automate and schedule outreach based on class date and times
  • Allow to resend by sms to everyone who has not opened an email yet
  • Communicate with staff and applicants via SMS

A class management software that offers all of the above will help save precious time, optimize communications and increase customer satisfaction. If too many of these steps require manual work or are not even options in your current software, it might be time to look for an alternative.

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