Text Messaging

When a group or team leader sends a message in Realm Inbox, group members and volunteers can receive a text.

Opting In to Text Messages

You can choose to automatically opt-in group participants and volunteers to receive text messages for each ministry area, group or serving team that has texting enabled. Once opted in, all individuals with a valid mobile number on their profile will receive a text the next time the group or team leader sends an Inbox message. If the individual does not have a mobile number on their profile, the text will be sent to the home number listed on their profile. However, if the home number listed is associated with a landline and not a cell phone, a text cannot be sent.

If you do not make opt-in automatic for a group or team, individuals must log in to Realm and enable text messaging from their Inbox Notifications preferences. Administrators can announce the texting feature on group newsfeeds to encourage people to update their preferences.

Individuals can choose to opt out of text messages at any time.

Text messages are sent from a unique mobile number that is assigned per group or team, per person. This number will not change unless there is no usage for a 90 day period. After 90 days of no usage, the number is released to be used by other groups and teams. In this scenario, a new number will be assigned upon additional text usage.

Who Can Send Texts

Texts notify individuals that the group or team leader has sent a message to their Realm Inbox. Texts are only sent to group members or volunteers when a group leader sends an Inbox message.

If the group or team leader enables replies, individuals can reply via text. This creates a reply within Realm Inbox that only the group or team leader can view. If replies are disabled, and an individual replies via text, the group or team leader will not receive the reply. The text reply will count towards the monthly text limit.

Realm can also send system-generated texts to volunteers, such as notifications for assignments and serving reminders.

Group participants and volunteers can't send texts to each other

How It Works

When a group or team leader creates an Inbox message, Realm sends a text that, by default, includes the message’s subject and a link. If the Inbox message is shorter than 150 characters, the full message will be included in the text.

If the individual has a Realm login:

Tapping the link takes them to the Realm Inbox. If they have the Connect mobile app installed, the link will open the app. If not, Realm will open in a mobile browser.

If the individual does not have a Realm login:

Tapping the link opens a mobile browser and displays a copy of the Inbox message. To respond, the individual must return to the original text message and send reply via text.

What Counts Towards the Monthly Text Limit

Each text sent to an individual counts towards the monthly text limit. For example, if a group leader sends a message to their group, and 25 people receive a text, this counts as 25 texts. If 5 of those texts are undeliverable, this still counts as 25 texts.

All text replies sent by group members and volunteers also count towards the monthly text limit. This includes replies sent via text when replies are disabled.

If you exceed the monthly text limit, there is an overage fee for each text you send until the end of the billing period.