Ok, so you've decided you want to take advantage of mass texting. Where do you start? First, you need to subscribe to a mass texting service provider like Trumpia. Service providers give you all the tools you need in order to opt in contacts and send them messages through whichever number option is best for your use case. What often distinguishes one mass text messaging service provider from another is the power and ease of use of its platform. The reality is, if you want to use SMS texting services, you probably need it right now. Our system is so intuitive and easy to follow that you can start sending messages in seconds while having access to excellent service, resources, and more. The other distinguishing features have to do with the features they provide and the level of automation they offer their customers. Before we go any further, let's cover some mass texting terminology that every user should be familiar with:
Mass Texting Terminology
A text keyword is any word or phrase you choose for your customers to text in order to subscribe to your alerts. When a customer texts in your keyword, a text messaging software will automatically capture their phone number and store it in your database. In an ad reading, "Text 'DEALS' to 97000 to join our texting campaign", the mobile keyword is "DEALS."
Online Signup Page
An online signup page, or OSP for short, allows subscribers to opt in to your mobile campaigns by filling out an online signup form. Some businesses prefer to opt in subscribers through an online signup page instead of a mobile keyword because businesses may want to gather more information about their subscribers, such as their name, interests, birthday, etc.
Short codes are 5- to 6-digit numbers that are exclusively for text messaging. They are "short", easier to remember, easy to text on the go, and allow for high throughput mass messaging. Unfortunately, the short codes cannot be used to make and receive voice calls, so a business would have to operate two numbers with this option.
Shared Short Code
Set to be phased out, these short codes are shared by multiple organizations. While this helps lower their cost, it also opens them up to potentially being shut down if one of the users sharing the code misuses it or is non-compliant with their messaging. Another drawback of shared shortcodes is that keywords are limited, meaning that a keyword can only be used by one organization per shared short code.
Dedicated Short Code
These short codes operate exactly the same as their shared variant, shared short codes, but are only used by a single organization. This opens them up to a wider variety of campaigns including text-to-win and text-to-donate programs. You also get to choose any keyword, rather than worrying about whether or not someone else has already claimed it. The drawback of these is that they can cost a prohibitive amount for many organizations.
Long Codes are the 10-digit phone numbers that we are all familiar with. Along with being more readily recognizable as a phone number than short codes, long codes offer the added benefit of being able to use the same number for both calls and texting. They are also sometimes referred to as 10DLC (10 digit long code).
Short (or shortened) Link
A short link is a web link containing relatively few characters that redirects to a longer web link. These are helpful because they allow you to fit longer URLs into your text messages. Be careful though, because some providers' link shorteners get flagged by service providers, so it's important to choose the right partner.
Landline Texting (also known as text to landline) enables your organization's existing landline or toll-free number to send and receive text messages. This way, people can get immediate interaction with your business without interrupting their busy day by being stuck on a long phone call or playing email tag.
Toll-free numbers are a great number option because they give you the same power and flexibility of dedicated short codes, but at a fraction of the cost. Toll-Free numbers are 10-digit numbers that begin with the prefix 800, 888, 877, 866, 855, 844, or 833. Carriers allow these numbers to send bulk text messages for commercial use.
Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS) messages enable you to send pictures and videos, making them great for grabbing your audience's attention and keeping your marketing fun and engaging.
Common Use Cases
Broadcasts are messages organizations send to your entire (or large part of) customer base. They can be scheduled ahead of time so that all of your users get the message at the same time. Broadcasts are ideal for sending general messages about an upcoming event or promotion.
Appointment reminders are targeted messages for specific users or groups to remind them of an appointment they've scheduled or event they are interested in. Depending on the texting software you use, you can also prompt your contacts to confirm, reschedule, or cancel their appointments so you can get an accurate headcount.
Polls are questions you send directly to your subscribers to receive feedback on a product, decision, question, or service. Common examples of user polls are surveys.
Text-to-vote campaigns allow your audience to text in to vote for things in order to determine a winner. This is perfect for things like mobile marketing campaigns or for fun things like live polls at sporting events.
Text-to-win campaigns are when contacts text a mobile keyword into your dedicated short code in order to enter into a contest with a prize. Customers wouldn't normally expect to receive ongoing updates after enrolling in a contest, so be sure to include a disclaimer if you plan to contact them again.
Because SMS messages have a high read-rate, mobile offers are some of the most effective SMS marketing campaigns. In order to drive sales to your stores or online, you need to send effective and targeted messages in order to entice customers to spend their money.
Text coupons are just like paper coupons, but they can be redeemed through a phone via QR or a traditional barcode. Text coupons are also simpler for customers to remember to bring than traditional printed coupons. In fact, SMS coupons are redeemed 10x more often than paper ones.