How To Effectively Communicate With Your Team On WrestlingIQ

Key Moments

0:38 Why sending shorter messages on WrestlingIQ is better than “email” long form messages

03:15 Sending messages to sub-rosters is better and is going to lead to more parents reading your information.

07:00 Why communicating too often, will lead to less use of WrestlingIQ Messaging

09:00 Different types of notifications and how your families will elect into what is best for them; email, iOS / Android Push, or SMS Text

012:30 While you might get 14 push notifications for messages, someone else is getting 14 emails

013:30 How everyone parent account created in WIQ is automatically turned on to notify via email when they sign up, unless they log in on a computer and turn email notification as their preference off

Links Mentioned In Video

Full Transcript

[00:00:00] Jeff: Welcome to the Wrestling IQ webinar series. This series is going to help you more effectively manage your program with the software, um, and better utilize a system. So I’ve got my business partner on today, Matt, who’s going to share the tech side and some of the improvements he’s been putting into messaging over the last four months.

[00:00:23] And I will talk about the operation side of running a rec high school or club program, um, and effectively communicating through the software. Um, So Matt, you want to take in and kind of give us an overview of some of the new things that you’ve put out to

[00:00:38] Matt: help programs? Sure. So in Wrestling IQ over the last 12 months, I’d say we’ve really put a focus on Rosters in conjunction with messaging and how that plays out in a communication world is that we’re transitioning clubs from they send this big email that has all the [00:01:00] information you need for a week.

[00:01:01] It’s really long. It works. Okay. For some clubs, but when you transition to something like wrestling IQ, you now have the capability to send shorter messages because all the information is otherwhere. Other places in the system, like the calendar, you can send targeted messages, like only to a specific roster.

[00:01:19] Um, so we try to coach people into a shorter, more to the point message that only coaches send and broadcast information one way, but give people the resources to find it themselves. Also, instead of having to always find that one email that was sent two weeks ago, and Apple mail search is terrible when you’re in a gym and like no one can find anything.

[00:01:39] Um, so that’s where you’re trying to focus. And that’s where the features have. Transition does too. And I’m happy to demo that too. Um, as we get into the weeds of it here.

[00:01:49] Jeff: Right. So can you give us a real quick, just a couple of things you see, um, as being like maybe give us a demo of the best practices of how to, how to use the software for those shorter [00:02:00] communications and pushing people to the calendar.

[00:02:02] Matt: Sure, let me share my screen. So, The I’m addressing IQ here. I’m going to be doing most of this admin work on the on the desktop, which is where you should do most of your configuration and then day to day. And the app works great for messaging to the groups, um, where we want to start and where teams that you just like you really well communication wise is they have great rosters.

[00:02:28] And what I mean by that is. Take for example, I have this roster here. This is a club account, so in some cases, club teams, you’re going to have a roster that’s pre filled based on registrations. That’s this one. In this case, I also have manually created a level 0 folk style roster. Um, in this case, I’m manually adding wrestlers to it based on their skill, because that’s how this team splits practices.

[00:02:55] So we’ve got like the beginner, the advanced. Level 0, level 1, level 2, level 3, level [00:03:00] 4, however you do it, have those skill levels split out. And the scene there is practice times. So whatever you’re splitting your practice schedule based on, you need distinct rosters for each one. Uh, and I’m harping on rosters because rosters, go ahead Jeff.

[00:03:17] No, I was

[00:03:17] Jeff: just going to say, you know, if I’ve got one big team, why, why is, why am I not just pushing everything out to the

[00:03:22] Matt: whole team? Well, it’s diluted, right? So the problem with those big emails is parents actually don’t care about anything except for what impacts their own child. Um, and that makes perfect sense, particularly for rec environments where, you know, it’s not a super competitive environment.

[00:03:40] It’s more like, I want my kid to experience this and I’m going to show up and drop them off. So when you have parents that are more like that, you need to be very succinct with your communication or else they’ll just ignore everything. So when you over communicate too much beyond the practice schedule and very important things, you just lose [00:04:00] everything.

[00:04:00] And then suddenly you’re sending more messages and even less people are reading it and it’s a really slippery slope as you get down to that. Um, so the key there is It’s dialing in who you’re sending the messages to so that the advanced people don’t care about the beginners. Same with beginners and advanced.

[00:04:17] Don’t copy and paste the same message between them, dial it in like this. It takes a little more effort on you as an admin, but it’s a much better experience for your retention and parent experience if they’re not getting bombarded with information that’s not relevant. And

[00:04:33] Jeff: they’re going to use the software a lot more too because the notifications, they’re not going to turn them off because now I’m getting, I’m getting 14 emails in a day and only one of them is relevant to my child.

[00:04:44] Matt: Yeah. It’s sort of like, for those of you in a corporate environment or anything that have used Slack or the sort of chat notifications, like there’s so many, you end up just ignoring half of them and then everyone has to start DMing you. And then you maybe unbear yourself from there, [00:05:00] but how you communicate as a team is actually one of the most challenging and most important things.

[00:05:07] So, you know, the fancy business school word is information architecture. That just means. Make sure you’re communicating only the things that need to be communicated to the right people at the right time. Uh, and that takes effort and thought, and, you know, tools like this, we help you do it, but it only gets you so far.

[00:05:23] You have to embrace the switch in your mind from blast to the whole team to We’re only sending this message to these 20 people, and this message to these 30 people, and this message to the other 30, and that’s what we’re showing here, is in an email, that’s very hard. You have to BCC 20 people, like it’s incredibly difficult.

[00:05:42] But if you’re using RemusCNI Q well, it’s actually not that hard. It takes an extra 10 minutes to set it up in the beginning. In the beginning,

[00:05:50] Jeff: you set up your rosters that flows through to your messaging group that flows through to your calendar, and then you don’t have to do the BCC to a bunch of subgroups, etc.

[00:05:59] You [00:06:00] literally just click into your roster messaging group, and you can push that to all 46 of those kids that that information is relevant to and then you go into your other group and push to your other group, the information that’s only relevant to them.

[00:06:13] Matt: That’s correct. So you reference a messaging group sync to a roster.

[00:06:17] So we start with rosters, get that all shored up. And what Jeff is talking about is when you then create your groups here, I’m going to create a level zero group. Let’s call it 20, 23, 24 level zero book style.

[00:06:38] This almost always should be only coaches and admins. Particularly when you’re broadcasting to more than say 10 people. There’s very few circumstances where you want everyone to be able to send within the group. Um, so typically here, the circumstances for this is more like a parent volunteer group that’s six people that organizes the concession stand and they need a [00:07:00] way to talk with each other.

[00:07:01] That’s fine. But for a whole team communication, this is where you should be.

[00:07:06] Jeff: Why is that the case? Why don’t you want a whole team communication to be everyone?

[00:07:10] Matt: Yeah. So it’s sort of like the email equivalent of using BCC versus including everyone in the email and having them reply all. So when a parent hits back, the coach and says like, I didn’t read this whole message, but I have this question that was already covered.

[00:07:25] You want that going directly to the coach, not to every single parent who actually was on top of reading the email, the notification. Um, so we do this so that again, the parents only get the information they care about and not the questions they don’t. Um, and then, so as we carry on here, this syncing with rosters is the most powerful piece of messaging in WrestlingIQ full stop, in my opinion.

[00:07:52] Um, what this does. Is you can choose who’s the coaches should be in there. I’m going to add level zero.[00:08:00]

[00:08:02] We’ll create this and this will now be synced with that roster. Meaning if we go back to this roster over here and we add someone to this level zero group. Let’s add Asa. You’ll notice that automatically. WrestlingIQ has added both Asa, this is the wrestler, and the guardians of Asa, Marta in this case. So, you don’t actually have to deal with managing memberships in a roster sync group.

[00:08:33] You just focus on the roster, everything else flows out from there. And now you have this roster that’s only the people who care about level 0 stuff. You can send messages to them.

[00:08:45] Jeff: What if I have somebody in that group that maybe is a parent that’s really involved, and I want them to be able to send messages to, not just coaches?

[00:08:55] Matt: Yep, absolutely. So if you are to edit the members here, [00:09:00] there’s this column. Um, notice we are the two coaches here. So we by default can send, but if say Marta, um, needed to be able to send cause she organized the last step, just give her permission to send to the group. And at that point, she’ll be able to send to the group.

[00:09:18] Uh, everyone else still can’t. So that’s a great way to involve key parents who are communicating, but don’t need coach accounts.

[00:09:31] Anything else we should cover in this particular,

[00:09:33] Jeff: I think, I think that was super helpful. Um, I think that was super helpful. Can you well so sometimes I see communication going out, like for my private Academy, I will occasionally send an update about a calendar changes to last minute cancellation. If it’s a broader cancellation.

[00:09:52] I’ll typically just send a push notification. Um, and and. That, you know, I’m really drive the parents to [00:10:00] be self directed and checking the calendar, right, because our calendar is the source of truth. It’s always updated. Um, and so I used to get a ton of messages. What time’s practice? When’s this? Can you do a private then?

[00:10:10] I put everything on the calendar and in all my communication, it says we will not answer scheduled questions. Check the calendar. Um, you know, and then in our calendar, there’s deep notes that help people in the note section understand we’ve got all of our events. Um, right, we’ve got our calendar robustly set up and our rosters tied to it.

[00:10:29] So when I cancel class, I just send a push notification that that class is canceled or changed, et cetera. And I really don’t send messages out about class changes.

[00:10:39] Matt: Yeah, and you shouldn’t. I think that’s a great best practice. So one of the things people miss with wrestling IQ is that. Uh, with the app, particularly the iOS app, when you receive notifications, what type of notification it is, it actually shows up differently on the user’s lock screen.[00:11:00]

[00:11:00] So, messages get grouped together by group, sort of like Slack does, but event cancellations are their own category of things. So, if you’re, have a cancellation and you send it to a messaging group, but you’re over communicating in that messaging group, And it just gets overlaid onto the next notification.

[00:11:16] The operating system is going to just stack that onto the messaging group. They have to open the messaging group at that point to see it. It’s sort of just buried. Um, so I think what Jeff is talking about, by the way, is if we say needed to cancel level zero practice today, um, notice I have the roster linked up here.

[00:11:38] I’ve got some good things linked up, like Jeff is talking about, like a maps location, notes. Here’s a link in the notes to register if you haven’t. Um, but when you change it, let’s say we delete this practice,

[00:11:55] uh, we’re going to only delete this event. You get the chance to notify only the people who [00:12:00] care about it. So I’ll click send notifications. And now all of those parents and coaches who are part of that roster got a notification saying practice has been canceled. Um, you don’t need to explicitly send it to them.

[00:12:14] They’ve got it. The advanced people don’t care. Level zero people just got it. Great. Um, similarly, if you were to change a practice, um, you get the opportunity to also send people notifications. So whether you’re deleting or changing times, basically any calendar event, you get the opportunity to broadcast that to the appropriate people.

[00:12:39] Jeff: So. Speaking of notifications, some people, I don’t have a smartphone. I have a flip phone. And, um, so maybe I get text messages or I get emails. Um, right. And so I can choose my notification. Can you show me how I know who has what type of notifications? And then also too, so I can understand, Oh, wow, actually I sent [00:13:00] 14 messages.

[00:13:01] That could be emailing me 14 times, right? Um, and so that, that could really get me to move off of using the software because then I unsubscribed from the email list.

[00:13:13] Matt: Yeah, absolutely. So it’s worth a step back here, I think, to talk about. One thing that people often get confused about when they’re switching to Rescue 9Q is other apps have a distinction between channels.

[00:13:26] There’s like, you can email the whole team, you can send them a push notification or you can, I don’t know, send them a poster, whatever it is. They let you actually choose how you send to them. Um, and we’ve chosen to not do that because we don’t believe it’s in line with modern privacy laws. And if we play the tape forward ten years, If we see everything going on in California, Europe, United States, privacy wise, people need to be able to be given a chance to unsubscribe on a per channel basis.

[00:13:56] So what we’ve said is, nope, you as the coach don’t get to choose how [00:14:00] people receive their messages. It’s on the parent, or the wrestler, or the coach, to choose how they get that information best. Maybe email’s best for some people. Maybe SMS, you can see, you can turn on raw text message notifications if you’ve got a razor.

[00:14:15] Uh, or whatever the latest flip phone craze is. Um, push notifications are also turned on for a lot of people who have the app. Um, so here’s a good example of me looking at a parent. I can see which channels they’re on. Um, I can’t change it for them because that’s not how it works. Uh, they get to elect it.

[00:14:35] How do they elect it? Can you show us that real quick? Yeah, so by default, everyone gets email. Um, when you open the app. So when

[00:14:43] Jeff: somebody signs up or when I import my roster and invite them, um, they’re automatically signed up to email unless they turn it off,

[00:14:53] Matt: correct? Correct. Um, and under the personal settings, you can see in my case, I have [00:15:00] push notifications and email turned on.

[00:15:02] Um, so this would be where someone would go again, that’s settings, personal notification preferences. Um, and you can toggle that here. I could add myself text messages if I want there.

[00:15:14] Jeff: So when does push notifications automatically get turned on? When I download the

[00:15:18] Matt: app or? Yeah, so when you download the app, which will give them an email and everyone who signs up will see a little walkthrough page that encourages them to download the app.

[00:15:27] Um, you have to click allow on the, do you want us to send notifications for you? And that’s when that gets turned on for each individual user. Okay,

[00:15:35] Jeff: but every, every single person in my program, every time I send a message is getting it as an email, or every time I send a practice change is getting it as an email, unless they go into their computer, log in, and unclick that box?

[00:15:47] Correct.

[00:15:48] Matt: Correct. Yep. And, you know, as you touched on, it’s a good thing, right? Email is a shared thing with your life. Like everything goes into that personal email. So if you’re over [00:16:00] communicating and Gmail is threading that messages from Wrestling Coach Academy into a block of 20, it’s highly unlikely that they’re going to read every single one very carefully because it’s a lot of work.

[00:16:13] Uh, you know. You have to open

[00:16:15] Jeff: every single

[00:16:15] Matt: email, right? You got to open every single email.

[00:16:19] Jeff: What if I, what if I have an open communication group and parents are sending, um, messages in that open communication group, how does that come across?

[00:16:29] Matt: Yeah, it’s so now for

[00:16:32] Jeff: those random parent. Messages as well.

[00:16:35] Matt: Yes, they do.

[00:16:36] Um, a few things there. One, if you have set it up that way, which we don’t recommend generally, you as a user can click this mute button here, and this will mute it only for you. Um, it’ll be in the iOS and Android app here shortly after this webinar, whereas I

[00:16:53] Jeff: won’t get a push notification and email or text if I click that button on my browser.

[00:16:58] Matt: Correct. Um, and [00:17:00] this is something that I wish we didn’t have to build actually into RestingIQ, but we need to because of some of these communication practices that I don’t think are quite transitioned to RestingIQ yet. Um, when we built messaging, it was more like, The mindset of like a business owner or a gym communicating with their clients.

[00:17:23] Often, if you’re part of a gym or yoga studio, you’ll get an email once every month that talks about any, whatever community stuff, all that stuff, but it’s not an open thread with the team. Um, so when we first,

[00:17:36] Jeff: if I belong to a yoga studio, you know, I get my updates and I’m appreciative to have them, but I’m not on a communication thread with.

[00:17:45] With

[00:17:46] Matt: all the members of the yoga studio. Correct. And I think that’s actually a good model. When you run a professional business like that, you actually don’t want to over communicate. You just want them to experience, have a good experience in person. Their schedule’s up online. They come in to [00:18:00] class. They love it.

[00:18:02] The, the thing that teams do when they open up communications like that is often seen as like, we’re going to build the culture of the club. And this is the wrong venue for it entirely, in my opinion. What do

[00:18:15] Jeff: you

[00:18:15] Matt: mean? Having an open messaging group on WrestlingIQ to build that culture.

[00:18:23] Jeff: The community culture.

[00:18:24] WrestlingIQ is not meant

[00:18:25] Matt: for that, you mean? Yeah, that is what I’m getting at, is WrestlingIQ is meant for conveying key information about running a team and getting a team, uh, in order to get at the tournament on time and, you know, there’s RSVPs in the calendar, like all these things are meant to help you run a team more efficiently.

[00:18:44] It’s not a culture building thing. Your culture comes from the room experience. It’s not about the digital messages you send at 11pm that half the parents don’t care about. It, it really isn’t. Um, you know, and, and some [00:19:00] parents, the pressure for that comes from the one or two loud parents who are upset that they can’t message everybody in the app.

[00:19:07] And I would urge you to ignore them. Tell them, you know what? We have social media. Go ahead and post that comment. Tag us in it. Build up her Instagram,

[00:19:18] Jeff: go to the Facebook page for that and build the community there. Or talk to other people there,

[00:19:22] Matt: friend and sure on Facebook, go exchange numbers with the one parent you actually wanna be friends with in the stands and like, you know, build up a friendship.

[00:19:30] You don’t need that to be in here. And I don’t think it’s the appropriate place, actually. I think that culture stuff is much better suited for. In person coaches should be building that culture in the room. Uh, and that’s really it. Uh, it’s not a Culture building tool. You also run the risk of negativity so one of the problems with facebook and instagram is just When you have an open platform like [00:20:00] that, there’s always some sort of unforeseen drama that the one parent says something insensitive to the other parent, and now the whole team has seen it, if they’re in a open group like this.

[00:20:14] Um, and by the way, once you click send, the notifications go out. Even if you were able to delete a message in Wrestling IQ, which you can’t, everyone’s gonna see it. It’s not something that you can take back. So when you’re talking about building culture, I actually think that a digital thing is much harder to do well than an in person curation of comments like that.

[00:20:37] If someone says something to you in person, you can have a conversation about it. You can work through it. You can address it right then. You don’t have a message sitting for two hours that the coach hasn’t seen because they have another job and suddenly 80 percent of the parents are now mad about it.

[00:20:51] And there’s a whole, like, we just want to wrestle. We just want to have fun. That’s where you should aim to be here with the system. That’s, that’s basically it. [00:21:00]

[00:21:00] Jeff: So you’re saying kind of less is more then? Absolutely. Um, to wrap this up for our webinar today, are there any kind of, you want to give a summary of maybe the one, two, three best practices that you think, um, any club program or town program should be

[00:21:15] Matt: implementing?

[00:21:17] Sure. Um, so first one, get your rosters dialed in, make sure the right people are on the right rosters. Second one, create rostered, synced messaging groups so that REST and IQ can do the heavy work of adding the right people to the group and you just maintain the roster. Third thing, calendar. Like you were talking about with your club, Jeff.

[00:21:40] Clubs that use the calendar really well have events that are linked to rosters. They have a Google Maps link in the location. They have notes for the parent. That way the parents can always find it. They don’t need to ask you. You just build that culture of, yep, here’s the calendar. You can find it on RSVP IQ.

[00:21:56] That’s it. Um, [00:22:00] I think that’s it. Is there anything you want to add to, uh, that I haven’t touched on from your experience?

[00:22:04] Jeff: No, I think this is excellent. You know, the one thing I would, would say is, you know, at Beat the Streets, we had multiple communication channels and, you know, I’m speaking, speaking specifically to Beat the Streets, New York, right?

[00:22:14] Beat the Streets, we had 10, 000 kids a year and, you know, we had 450, 500 coaches, um, and, and we have to communicate that information to all of them. Um, You know, parents and kids, right? 20, 000 parents, some of them not living in the same household. And so a lot of times we had programming directors in the past who would send emails about everything they thought was interesting.

[00:22:37] This tournament’s here, this is there, this is here, this is there. Before you know it, we couldn’t get anybody to fill out the waiver because when we would send out the waiver at the beginning of the year, nobody was reading the emails because we had been sending too many emails. So then we had to get on Remind.

[00:22:50] And we push them a text message. Data laws change, right? So now can’t send them a remind unless they choose to be opted in. So now you’ve got parents ignoring that. [00:23:00] So all of a sudden our communication channels got fractured because we were over communicating. And I remember staff meetings where there was a debate between the women’s programming director and, and the, the overall programming director.

[00:23:11] And the women’s program director was saying we need to communicate less. And the overall program director was saying we need to communicate more. Ultimately, the women’s director was right. And, and we completely diluted our communication channels. And it was, it became impossible to get parents to do anything that was important because we couldn’t communicate with them because they weren’t reading anything

[00:23:31] Matt: we sent.

[00:23:33] That’s right. I think that’s a great lesson. And it’s particularly true for wrestling. We have to remember that wrestling is just a part of a kid’s life. It’s not the thing they’re thinking about all day you as a club owner are they’re talking about Tuesday and maybe Saturday and that’s about it so being respectful of that will bring better results than Assuming wrestling is the center of all the parents schedule, right?[00:24:00]

[00:24:00] Jeff: And I kind of love what you said about that Facebook becomes the place where a ton of stuff can go out share a wrestling video link share Etc, etc. And people can choose to follow that and consume it on their own schedule, right? They’re not going to get an immediate notification to their phone, right?

[00:24:12] They log onto the Facebook page for the team at night and digest it when they’re winding down or when they’re drinking their coffee in the morning. That makes a lot of sense. And then with this, you just stay very value add focused, right? If it’s going out, it’s super value add for the families. Totally agree.

[00:24:30] Awesome. Matt, I know your time is super limited. Um, so thank you so much for getting on today and, and putting this together to help our clubs, um, more effectively communicate with their families and, and thanks for growing the sport. Appreciate what you do. Yeah.

[00:24:43] Matt: Likewise. Thank you, Jeff.