The purpose of the Communications feature is to send pertinant team information to your membership as a whole or individual groups within the team, such as Athlete Age Groups, Roles, Athlete Roster Groups etc. This tool is not entended to faciliate back and forth communication and does not support copy/paste of individual emails into the "To" field. Anyone included must have a parent or athlete account in your site. For instructions on creating accounts, see our Managing People Help Center article.
Emails or Alerts are managed from the Communications tab in the Manage Team console.
Who has permission to send an Email or Alert?
Members with Site ADMIN access, and members assigned to a Role with Manage Communications permissions, can choose between sending an Email or sending an Alert (succinct and timely information you need to share with the team).
For instructions on creating Admins, see our Adding New Admins Help Center article.
Role Permissions: (designated on each Role)
For instructions on Roles, see our Defining Roles Help Center article.
When is it a good time to send an Alert over an Email?
The purpose of using the Alert feature is to quickly broadcast a short urgent message via the SwimTopia Mobile App (i.e. Practice cancelled due to weather). Sending an Alert triggers a push notification to team members’ who have downloaded the SwimTopia mobile app AND enabled notifications within their phone settings, removing the need for external texting apps. Team members' that don’t have the app (or notifications enabled) will receive the alert as an email instead of a push notification.
Note: Members need to update to the new release of SwimTopia Mobile to receive push notifications (Version 2.1.17 or higher). Alerts cannot contain styled text or attachments, and are limited to 160 characters. Every message must have a subject (which will appear on phones as a bolded line of text) and a body. At this time, you can not send messages directly from the mobile app itself.
Sender display and generic team email suggestion
All emails or alerts sent from your team website will be from the name and email address associated with your own login, and are not visible accross admin accounts. Some teams opt to set up generic team or role-based admin logins in their email program of choice, and setup SwimTopia accounts with these logins to send team-wide email/alert messages. Doing this will allow for easier role transitions, and retain a log of emails sent for future reference by new volunteers. Replies to emails will be sent to the email used when the message is sent.
How to reach particular groups
All Current Season Members:Email all members of the team in the current season team by entering: Members. All users are automatically added to your Members group for the current season through registration, including Approved and Pending registrations and users manually added through the People tab. The Members group is intended for team-wide general information Communications. Parents who have requested to not receive email communications in Registration are not included in Members. These parents will show “Unsubscribed” when viewing their profile in People.
All Previous Season Members:Email members of the previous season by entering: Members - Previous Season. All last season's imported users and registrations are included in this group, unless they have opted out. This is an excellent way to invite members to register for a new season. Note: Any season marked "unofficial" will be skipped.
All Parents (Disregards Opt-Out Selection):Email Parents only by entering: Parents. Parents can unsubscribe from "Members" but not from "Parents". In other words, using the Parents email group will send a message to every parent with an email address even if they have used the unsubscribe feature. So don’t use this group for general announcements. The Members group is likely smaller than the Parents group, but there’s no need to send to both groups in a single message. If you want everyone to receive the message even if they’ve requested not to be communicated with, use Parents (but use it sparingly).
Email Athletes only by entering: Athletes. Due to the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act ("COPPA"), only High School teams can send Communications directly to athletes. Message will be delivered to the parents if there’s no email address affiliated with the athlete.
Athlete Age Groups:Email Athlete Age Groups by typing the age or gender, then select from the drop-down list of choices. Note: 15 + age groups are typically labeled “Men” or “Women.” Message will be delivered to the parents if there’s no email address affiliated with the athlete.
Athlete Roster Groups:
Email Athlete Roster Groups by entering the name of the group. Message will be delivered to the parents if there’s no email address affiliated with the athlete.
Role Assignees:If you tend to reach out to a subset of your members, such as "Board," "Timers," "Coach," "Team Reps" etc. we suggest creating "Roles" for these groups, and then assign these members to the role. Email all members assigned to a role by typing in the name of that role. Users are automatically included in these email groups when you assign them to a role. ➞ See more information on Defining Roles and Assigning Volunteers to Roles.
- Parents can only unsubscribe from the "Members" group. All other groups listed above are delivered without regard to the unsubscribe option.
- A particular Communication will not be sent to a single recipient more than once, even if you enter multiple groups in the recipient field and they are members of more than one group. For example if you send to multiple age groups and the parent has more than one child, they will only receive one message.
- When reaching out to athlete "groups" listed above, if the athlete doesn’t have an email address, the parent receives the email on behalf of the athlete, but the parent will not ALSO receive the email if the athlete email exists. This does not apply when addressing to "Members" groups, which sends the email to anyone that has an email and is not unsubscribed (parents and athletes)
- Registrations in a Pending status are considered part of your Roster, and will receive messages if applicable based on the "group" used in communication. If you do not want this to occur, you can move them to Rejected status until approved.
How to send an Email or Alert
In the To field, groups are labeled based on type, including (Age Group), (Role), (Roster Group), and (Group). Start typing the name of any user or group and select the matching user or group to receive the email or alert. Click Expand groups to display each individual user, or to remove any from your list.
Tip: When typing in a group name on an iOS device (iPhone, iPad) you may have try typing in the first few letters of the group or recipient name and then backspace a few letters to be able to select it.
Also publish as news post will create a news post along with the communication sent out that uses the subject as the title and the message as the content of the post. Any attachments will not be included on the news post. (News posts are managed under Website > Posts)
Allow recipients to see each other divides the recipients into groups of approximately 50 and sends the messages out in batches.
Sending Group Emails through Reports and Meets
You may also send emails to groups while working with reports and meet jobs & shifts. See our Sending Group Emails through Reports and Meets tutorial for more details.
Trouble-shooting Communication Issues
See our Help Center article on Communications: Email Delivery