Text messaging is personal, and everyone uses the technology a little differently. Additionally, establishing a public health texting program requires an investment of funds, resources, procedures, and staff. Knowing your end user will help you understand what will drive them to opt in to your program and how to craft the messages you want to send them so that your program works well. The importance of this step can't be overstated!
There's a good chance your answer isn't so simple. Researchers at Public Health - Seattle & King County performed a Q Method study Q Methodology is a research method used to measure people's subjectivity or viewpoint about a topic. It involves rank ordering opinion statements in terms of how much they relate to another statement. It allows the researcher to understand the different types of people in the population—groups of people who think similarly about a topic. to better identify the attitudes and motivations of different texting "types." Within different populations, you'll find different texter types. Take a look at the resources on this page to read more about the texter types in different populations.
Don't worry if you don't have the resources to perform research this extensive—Public Health - Seattle & King County hopes their work can serve as a resource to you. As you develop your own program, consider how your marketing and messages can appeal to all of these users, not just one type.
Urban Texters are most common type of texter, and we will use them as our target audience in most of the examples in this toolkit. Read the descriptions of Urban Texters below. Think about how you use text messages in your own life. Which experience do you identify with most?
|Texting keeps me organized and on my feet. I schedule, update, and plan. My middle name is "multi-task."|
|I text when I'm in meetings or at the library, but I keep my conversations to a minimum.|
|I text all the time with the people I care about most. I have longer conversations and expect a prompt reply from my friends and family.|
|I like knowing I can text if I need to, like if I get a flat tire or if I don't want to have a difficult conversation.|
You are an On-The-Go Texter.
These texters have busy lifestyles, and they use texting to keep themselves organized. They find it useful for planning, connecting quickly, and taking care of errands. These texters are the consummate multi-taskers, and they're committed to the technology.
You are a Strategic Texter.
These texters use the technology when they can't have a long conversation, but they don't want to depend on it too much. They prefer other types of communication to build relationships. To them, texting is important, but should be limited.
You are an Intimate Texter.
Unlike strategic texters, intimate texters use the technology to maintain relationships with close friends and family members. They invest in their communications, and they expect others to do the same. They want quick, considerate responses, but they think it's rude to text in a group setting. Texting as a social status doesn't matter to them.
You are a Security Texter.
To these texters, texting provides piece of mind. They know the technology is private and reliable, and they use it to communicate from a distance and to avoid difficult social situations.
Move forward to learn about marketing Getting Subscribers.