Tips for getting started
- Register your business with carriers. US carriers (such as AT&T and Verizon) require businesses sending messages over local numbers to register for Application to Person messaging. Learn more here.
- Make sure your contacts are opted-in. Opting in means that a contact has confirmed consent to receive SMS from you. US mobile carriers require opt-in for businesses sending messages to contacts.
- Introduce yourself. The first time you reach out to someone is your first impression, make it a good one! Your customers expect conversational messaging with a business they trust.
- Use short and succinct messages. Texting is unlike emails and phone calls. When broadcasting you can preview your message to ensure that the text fits on your contacts’ screens.
- Be aware of SMS restrictions. A normal text segment can include 160 text characters. A single emoji counts as multiple characters so segments with emojis are counted up to 70 characters.
Comply with carrier and government guidelines
There are certain guidelines from carriers and federal laws to abide by when texting customers. Carriers are increasingly filtering messages that could be interpreted as spam or unwanted. The best way to have reliable deliverability of your messages is to have genuine conversations with people that have opted in and continue to interact with your messaging.
- State who you are. Announce or remind customers who you are and why you are reaching out to them.
- Make sure your contacts opt in. When you collect contacts’ phone numbers there should be language stating that you may contact them. Ex: Having a checkbox on a web form giving permission to reach out to the contact via text, email etc.
- Avoid links. Try to refrain from sending out messages with; carriers often filter messages containing URLs and will flag domains.
- Avoid referring to other numbers. This is considered suspicious and will likely be flagged by carriers.
- Vary your messaging. Carriers detect repeated messages as spam and frequently filter those messages.
- Allow for opting out. Make sure that your contacts are fully aware that they can opt out of receiving messages from you at any time by sending any of these keywords: “STOP, STOPALL, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE, QUIT”
- Use conversational language. Avoid generic marketing lingo and messaging such as: $, FREE, PROMO, DEAL, etc.
Many of these guidelines are best practices to be compliant with the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). Read the full TCPA law here.
Best practices for broadcast messaging
Here are a few tips that can help with maximizing the Avochato broadcast feature.
- Relevant Message. When sending out a message to a large audience always make sure that it is relevant to the audience
- Call to Action. Have a call to action in your messaging, especially if you want your audience to engage.
- Quick Response. Be prepared to answer quickly and maintain conversations; if someone texts back there is a strong sense of urgency.
- Cadence. Maintaining a reasonable cadence for messages, a few messages a week is ok but not every day unless the customer/recipient is expecting that type of volume.
- Keywords. Use keywords to help tag relevant audiences and to ensure quick automated responses. This is also a great way to reach out to relevant audiences by using tags to distinguish your customer’s specific interests.
- High Volume. If you are sending out a broadcast to an audience larger than 5,000 contacts, please reach out to the Avochato team about adjusting settings to your account to increase speed and deliverability.
- Toll free numbers. These types of phone numbers typically have higher deliverability rates. If you would like to improve your message deliverability, please reach out to our team to discuss using toll free numbers or purchasing a short code.