Gather FAQ

Is a MailChimp list required in order to use Gather?

Yes. Gather creates a static segment in MailChimp. You can still invite people who are not on your list to sign up for text alerts, and you can share your Gather form on social networks. But as a matter of principle, we want people to start with a permission-based list of invitees.

How much does it cost to use Gather?

You pre-pay for bundles of text messages. There are bundles for events big or small. The more you purchase up front, the cheaper it gets. You can purchase 175 messages for $8.99, 500 messages for $18.99, or 2000 messages for $48.99. A Gather phone number comes free with your first message pack.

How do messages work?

Gather messages work just like messages from your phone company: You buy a pack, and we deduct credits for the messages you send and receive. Initial welcome messages to new subscribers are free, but all other messages (both outbound and inbound) count against your credit balance. Messages to the U.S. and Canada cost one credit, and messages to numbers outside the U.S. and Canada cost five credits (a service requirement, not a way for us to gouge international users). Inbound messages cost one credit each. Gather credits don't expire.

Note: If you have a Gather UK number, then you can only send messages to and receive them from other UK numbers.

Will attendees see my phone number?

No. Attendees see your Gather phone number, so you can keep your personal number private.

Will I see my attendees’ phone numbers?

No. Attendee phone numbers are private—you’ll only see their names.

Can attendees send messages to other attendees?

No. Attendees can only send you messages by texting your Gather number. That’s what makes Gather different from group chat apps.

Can attendees continue to send me messages after the event?

No. Messages won’t be delivered if the event has expired, or if the user has unsubscribed from the event.

What happens to my attendees’ numbers after the event is over?

Attendee numbers are deleted from our system when the event is over. Once their numbers are deleted, you can’t contact them through Gather.

Is there any way for the organizer to add attendees manually?

No. Attendees have to opt in to receive text messages from you.

Can I contact attendees after an event is over?

Yes. Gather creates a static segment in MailChimp, which you can use to email your attendees—as long as they've given you permission.

Is MailChimp getting into SMS marketing?

The short answer is no. SMS marketing is riddled with all kinds of FCC regulations and telephony standards that we don’t want to tackle right now. Not to mention all the mobile apps looking to get into it. We’re just trying to make it so nobody gets lost at an event again.

Why did MailChimp make Gather?

Because our CEO got lost before an event started, and he had no way of quickly contacting the host for directions.