This guide will be show you how to make sure you are conformant with the necessary standards for SMS. These include; allowing customers to opt in and out and making sure your SMSs don’t look like spam messages.
If you are using SMS to send sales or marketing messages, you need to give your recipients the option to opt out. In order to do this you will need to purchase an inbound facility, there are several different types:
- A dedicated long number
- A dedicated short code
- A keyword on the shared short code (60006)
Once you have purchased an inbound facility you can add a signature to your messages along the lines of; ‘to unsubscribe from further messages text NOMORE to 60006).
This is necessary to allow customers the option of whether or not to receive marketing messages from you, this is an industry standard for all marketing channels (e.g. email, web, applications etc.).
The Cloud Portal’s help section is filled with useful information on long numbers and short codes to help you purchase the right one.
We find that a lot of customers we speak to about SMS the first time, assume that its primary use is sending out thousands upon thousands of spam messages to recipients. This is NOT the case; in fact just over 75% of our business is made up of businesses that use SMS purely for operational purposes.
So in actual fact more messages are sent with important information than they are with marketing. When you are thinking about the types of messages that you want to send, consider that people may wish to receive important info direct to their mobiles.
The first thing you need to understand about SMS is that it is not email; you can’t send people an essay with a picture and a hyperlink. But that’s what makes it so powerful! Getting your point across in as few words as possible in a place where people are most likely to read it is guaranteed to keep their attention.
One SMS is 160 characters, so to have your message make the most impact you should ensure that your message is less than this. Remember that a space is a character, but you can check the length of your messages when you type them in to the message copy box in Message Manager.
It is very important to ensure that your company name is either used as your originator (who your message comes from); which you can set up in Message Manager Settings, or included within your message.
Using your company name means that your recipients will recognise you and be reassured that they can trust your messages, which is very important for building a communication relationship.
If you want your recipients to be able to reply, then the industry standard is to use your inbound number as your originator to make it as easy as possible for recipients to respond.
However, if you do not require a response, avoid using a number as your originator, as this may encourage unnecessary responses or requests by text that might not be picked up by you or your team. In this instance it would be best to use an alphanumeric originator (e.g. your company name), which would mean that recipients cannot reply.