Like 2020 and 2021, 2022 did not disappoint, it was the gift that just kept on giving
Some of the highlights of this year included
1. The start of the war between Russia and Ukraine
2. Massive lay-offs in the invincible tech sector
3. Elon Musk taking over Twitter (Did he finally bite off more than he could chew?)
4. Chat GPT-3 takes center stage in the tech world
5. Argentina gave a fist-clenching performance to win the world cup
As interesting as the point mentioned above may be, we are not here to look at that. We are here to look at the trends that happened in the world of text messaging in 2022.
1. Say Goodbye to Shared Shortcodes
So what are shared shortcodes?
SMS shortcodes are special telephone numbers, shorter than full telephone numbers, that can be used to send and receive text messages. These shortcodes are usually 5 or 6 digits long and are used to send text messages to and from mobile phones. SMS shortcodes are used for various purposes, such as sending marketing messages, participating in contests or voting, donating to charities, shipping notices, flight updates, big brand marketing, reminders, and notifications. Currently, thousands of brands, sometimes without even knowing, are using the same [shared shortcodes] to send text marketing messages to their audiences. This makes it harder for subscribers to distinguish the multiple senders and their various products and offers, especially since all of them are located within the same message window. It also creates an unpleasant, impersonal, and spammy experience. As a result, customer engagement and click-through rates decrease, leading to declining sales and revenues for businesses.
Toll-Free US numbers are designated for business messaging use by all major carriers in the United States and most major mobile carriers in Canada. This makes Toll-Free numbers a popular alternative to long code or short code numbers in the US and Canada.
On September 30 2022, major carriers blocked SMS messages sent from unregistered toll-free numbers, this was done to prevent spam and other types of abuses.
If you currently use toll-free numbers to send SMS messages, you verify both new and existing toll-free numbers.
Toll-free verification process:
To be verified, a toll-free number must submit an application to be approved by mobile carriers.
Once the application form was submitted, it will be processed within 2-3 business days.
Upon submission, it can take up to 4-6 weeks for toll-free number verification.
- Verification is not whitelisting, so being approved doesn’t mean that the users won’t experience any blocking.
How to submit the Toll-free verification form?
- Click here to submit a toll-free verification form
- Please make sure to submit complete, and upload high-quality forms to help make the process faster and easier.
A 10DLC stands for a 10-digit long code number. It is a standard phone number, like 423-123-3249. An alternative to shortcodes and Toll-free numbers a 10DLC number is also used in automating texts.
Why are carriers implementing 10DLC regulations?
Carriers want to prevent spammers from taking advantage of 10DLC, by having you verify the A2P use cases you’re texting for. It’s all intended to keep text messaging a quality channel your customers, and you, enjoy using.
10DLC regulations in 2022
To comply with carriers, you need to register your organization (brand) and the use cases (campaigns) you text for. Otherwise, your messages will begin to be filtered—and thus not delivered to customers.
As part of your brand registration, you’ll include whether or not you’re a sole proprietor, private, public traded, or non-profit, plus the industry you work in. This gives carriers a way to verify your identifying information and confirm you aren’t a spammer.
T-Mobile and AT&T increased per-message fees for unregistered 10DLC A2P messaging on March 1st 2022. We’re actively working to help you do this, so you can avoid unnecessary fees.
What impact will 10DLC brand registration have on your texting?
10DLC registration will give your messages higher throughput. That means more messages are delivered faster. Which is a good thing for you and your customers.
It’s the carriers’ way of making sure SMSs stay as a healthy communication channel, as more and more businesses, like yours, start texting customers. Registering 10DLC numbers decreases spammers and increases deliverability all of which gives your own messages more credibility with customers in the long run.
What all goes into 10DLC registration?
When you register your 10DLC you’ll also need to document:
Your company’s legal name
Your company’s country of registration
The type of your organization (private, publicly traded, nonprofit)
Your company’s tax number/ID/EIN
Your business’s website
Descriptions of each campaign you text for
Sample messages for each campaign you text for
How to register for 10DLC?
- 10DLC requires businesses to register their brand and campaigns to associate their texting with specific usage, cases, and security.
- Creating a brand is a process that involves registration to a third-party company entrusted by US carriers to manage all the 10DLC brands and campaigns. This organization is named The Campaign Registry (TCR).
- To register a 10DLC number, complete the registration form at the following link:
- 10DLC Registration form
4. How are businesses coping with the change?
Businesses are following the guidelines set by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act TCPA and the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association - CTIA.
Failure to comply with either the CTIA or the TCPA can result in heavy fines and the disbarment of shortcodes and long codes.
2. Consumer Consent:
When businesses text their customers they are careful to realize too:
- Obtain a consumer’s consent to receive messages in general
- Obtain a consumer’s informed consent to specifically receive marketing messages
- Ensure that consumers can revoke their consent
Most businesses segregate their messaging into 3 types:
3. Maintaining Consent Data
Brands maintain the consent information that the user has provided to make sure that they can use that information as needed upon any issues or confusion.
4. Clarity on the content type
When the user signs up for the brand’s SMS program, brands are explicitly mentioning the type of content that the user will be receiving. Brands ensure that the users understand what to expect when they sign up for an SMS program of the brand.
Brands also avoid the use of illegal language cues (SHAFT method) like:
Sex, drugs, alcohol, tobacco, firearms, and hate speech.
5. Disclose everything
Brands openly state any hidden charges that may be applied while engaging with SMS campaigns. When the brand expects the user to give a reply in terms of a reserved or a custom keyword, they mention explicitly that the user might be charged for this reply.
Change is a constant factor in the SMS and voice messaging industry. Carriers often introduce new processes to protect their customers. The new registration requirements for toll-free numbers are a good example of these kinds of changes. We’ll work with you to help make sure that these changes have minimal impact on your business. If you have any concerns about these changing requirements, contact us today
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