Use an Effective Opt-In Chain

If you are advertising your Message phone number and having new students text in, you will want to set up an opt-in message—the message students get when they text in for the first time!

We suggest using an Opt-In Chain—a series of questions to gather information on the student to save to their profile. You will want to collect their first name, last name, student ID (if applicable), and any other information you need to group them, such as class year. Here is an example Opt-In Chain:


Hello! Thanks for texting Message University Admissions. To get started, we’ll need to collect some information from you. What’s your first name?

(saves response to first name field)

Thanks! What’s your last name?

(saves response to last name field)

What’s your student ID?

(saves response to student ID profile field)

What’s your graduation year?

(saves response to graduation year profile field)

Thanks so much, that’s all the information we need right now! Do you have any questions I can answer?


Here are some best practices to keep in mind:

Keep it short and to the point – We usually recommend limiting your Opt-In Chain to 3-4 questions to ensure that the participant will get through the entire flow correctly.

Don’t leave your participant hanging – Odds are if someone’s opted into your program, it’s because they have a specific question or concern. Be sure to reach out to a participant as soon as you can after they’ve completed the flow to help protect their experience.

Let the automation group for you – As demonstrated in the example, you can use participant responses to an Opt-In Chain question to place them into a specific group list. This feature is a great way to avoid manually sorting participants as they text in.

Collect IDs if you can - The customer id field is a very important way to track participant data and update it through csv upload. If have an external id you're using as customer id (such as a student id), ask for it in the chain and Message can automatically assign it to that participant.

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