I wanted to share a great app I’ve been using to stay in touch with my congregation. Hit Em Up is an awesome way to send out mass text messages with personalized greetings and church wide announcements. The cost is incredibly low at only $30 per year. There is no other investment other than the time it takes to create groups of contacts with whom you want to communicate (other than your cell provider cost to send text messages. I have an unlimited plan, so there is no additional cost for me to do this.) The app is operated completely from your own cell phone, and will connect to your phone contacts with your approval. Once your contacts are connected, you simply create a group and manually add each targeted contact in your phone to the group.
Once you have set up the group, it is really simple to create a personalized message and send to each person in that group. You will have to manually send each text message, but a personalized message is already created for you. You can learn more about this process on the app’s website FAQ page. I also love the option to attach images and video links to the message. I have had such great success with this app. I typically send a message every few days to nearly 200 church contacts in my phone. A good percentage of folks respond to me after they receive their personalized message, so I usually spend another hour responding back with specific questions about their situation and needs, especially during this time of crisis and emotional distress.
FYI, I am not promoting this app for any other reason than sharing its benefits to those of us in ministry settings. I am not a recipient of any benefits for doing this! Just wanted to share this great tool that has increased my ability to stay connected to my congregation. I hope it helps you as we try to discern more ways to increase your personal connection. Please reach out if you have questions or want to learn more about this digital strategy to care for my congregation.
Blessings to each of you during this challenging time. I am praying for you!
Brice Thomas, Pastor
Holy Trinity Community Church, UCC, Nashville