Group chats are a great alternative. You can connect with everyone at once and get feedback right away.
The iPhone comes with built in with group chat ability, but it works best between iPhones. Android users are left out.
The GroupMe app lets you group chat on any smartphone platform. Even iPod and iPod touch will work.
Within a GroupMe chat, you can share messages, photos and videos, as well as attach your location so your party can find you. To invite people to join your group, all you need to do is simply send them the URL to the group chat.
You can also create an avatar for your group, "like" other people's comments, and even split a bill!