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SMS Short Codes for Marketing

This week we’re looking closely at the differences between the uses of SMS Short Codes and Long Codes.  If your business is interested in using text message marketing, then you will want to understand the logistics of SMS and the difference between sending messages on a short code verses a long code.

What is a Short Code?

A short code is a 5-6 digit phone number that businesses use to send out marketing SMS message from. Read More about Short Codes.

This is an add for A&W Restaurant’s Text Club. They use a Short Code (70626) and a Keyword (Burger) as the means of having customers opt-in for special offers such as a Papa Burger. When the consumer texts in, he or she is subscribing to A&W’s Text Club and agreeing to receive SMS messages from them.

What are Short Codes Used for?

Businesses use several kinds of tools to communicate with consumers. SMS allows businesses to deliver time-sensitive alerts, offers, and other information to consumers. When the communication is initiated from a business application (such as an SMS platform), rather than an individual’s mobile phone, it can be referred to as a A2P Communication (Application-to-Person) SMS. This is the common use for Short Codes.

Short codes are the preferred tool for sending marketing SMS messages. Growth in the use of SMS marketing is expected to continue through 2016. This growing adoption will allow individuals to easily interact with the brands, companies and service providers they value via text message while providing a quick and trusted communication tool for the companies.

Why Use Short Codes for Marketing SMS?

SMS Regulation

Short codes are regulated by Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) and the CTIA (The Wireless Association). These consumer protection regulations require companies using short codes to ask permission (opt-in to subscribe) before contacting an individual. This provides a certain level of value in exchange – protecting the consumer and creating more successful SMS campaigns because trust has been built with the customers using their mobile device.

Speed of Message Delivery

Using a short code allows your business to send large volumes of text messages in a short period of time. Text message providers, like 3Seventy, setup deals with the carriers allowing a large number of messages to go out to consumers from each carrier at a time. This is really important to those businesses with a database of 5,000 or more contacts. Many businesses have millions of contacts in their SMS database, so timeliness is key to the campaign’s effectiveness with customers.

Flexibility for Innovation

Short codes allow for more development flexibility and innovation. Wireless carriers can change, update or add new features to short codes for enterprises without a problem. When you are driving end users to take the same action to interact with your brand, it’s easier to make updates. Plus, application developers can leverage short codes to provide mobile solutions such as a one-to-one chat, triggered alerts, security authentication, and mobile coupons.



RELATED NEWS: Neustar’s contract with CTIA to manage the CSC registry will end on December 31, 2015.




Best Practices, long codes, Mobile Marketing, short code, SMS Marketing

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