Message Priority Guidance

We are often asked “Which priority should I use?” by administrators who send messages, so this article is to explain the effects of using different message priorities and shares some guidance on which ones to use.

How to set a Message Priority

When you create a message you are given the opportunity to select an message priority for it both from the main admin (below) and from Rapport.


Setting a message priority (main admin)



What are the implications of each message type?

Selecting a message priority has two implications, in some cases the number of recipients and in all cases, the appearance of the message is impacted.

Message Distribution:

The priority level impacts the number of people that will receive your message by Voice or Text message (not email).  End users can configure their settings to select the minimum priority level that they are prepared to receive.  It is important to not inflate the priority level of a message to simply increase the number of recipients as this will cause people who are sent lower priority messages this way to unsubscribe altogether.

Impact on Appearance:

Email appearance

Neighbourhood Alert emails now include a message type icon at the top.  The message icon features a background colour based on the message priority used.  These colours are based on colours from green, through orange to red, 5 = green through to 1 = red.

The thin underline/divider on the email is also set to the priority colour as the image below highlights.


Fig 1 Example of an Alert email set to Priority 5 highlighting the green message type icon and green underline.


Alert Appearance on Websites

Most Alert websites feature an Alert Archive which lists many of the recent alerts that have been sent out in that area.  The list of latest alerts also feature the Message type icons which feature the priority level colour (see image below).

Fig 2, example of an Alert Archive showing recent messages and Message Type icons



Which Priority level should you use?

The message priority is designed to reflect the importance and more relevantly the urgency of each message. 

Your local Corporate Comms department or System Administrator should be the correct resource for final guidance regarding which priority level should be used.  However, the following superb guidance was created by Devon & Cornwall Police for guidance for their staff:



This image is also available to download as a PDF below, thanks to Devon and Cornwall Police


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