Voifone™ Bulk SMS (Short Message Service)
International Text Messaging Service
Use Bulk Text Messaging for your group texting needs almost anywhere on earth. With over 200 countries served, you can send your message almost anywhere. We have some of the best rates in the industry due to our simple pricing model with no hidden fees. Unlike Short Code SMS (Texting), bulk SMS (text messaging) is a more simplistic system that allows you to send text messages to anyone, anywhere, with your own phone number shown as the sender. Messages can be scheduled, so it works for appointment reminders to individuals or for scheduling large or small group messages. Recipients can respond to messages and you’ll see them in the INBOX of your SMS platform instead of clogging up your phone.
Which To Use, Short Code or Bulk SMS?
This is determined by your wants, needs and budget. Bulk SMS is less expensive but doesn’t have the robust features you’ll find in Short Code texting. So it’s wholly inadequate for polling, surveys, most mobile coupons, sending QR or Bar Codes, etc. Also, the delivery rates are lower. There are no auto-responders and no automated opt-in routines, making it more dangerous from a compliance standpoint, especially when terminating messages in the USA where the SMS regulations are strictly enforced.
On the other hand, our Short Code services don’t extend beyond the borders of the USA. So if you need to send messages outside the USA, Bulk SMS is definitely your choice. Bulk SMS is priced low enough to allow most customers, if they have International needs, to use both Short Code SMS (for the USA) and Bulk SMS (for International). You should also be aware that Short Code SMS is far more reliable from the perspective of recipients actually getting the message than Bulk SMS. Why? It isn’t because of “us” or “our platform”. It’s because Short Code systems are much more strictly regulated by the carriers. To qualify for Short Code service, we and the carriers must meet strict guidelines set by cell phone companies, monitor the usage of our customers, and use a different system when connecting to the recipients’ cell phone carriers when receiving and delivering short code messages. This results in faster through-put and a higher delivery rate than normal text messaging. Having said that, the Bulk SMS system is still an outstanding method to send your message to the masses. The same laws apply whether you’re using Short Code or Bulk SMS. Please be careful to ensure ALL bulk SMS you deliver complies with opt-in requirements.
You’ll notice a whole long list of features with Short Code SMS. You don’t see that here because Bulk SMS is a very simple, but effective, system. It sends messages to cell phones and not much else. Here are the primary features of the Bulk SMS system:
- International SMS: One of the greatest features is you’re enabled to send messages to nearly any group of people, in any quantity, as often as you like, worldwide. There are no geographical restrictions or quantity limitations. Send where you want, when you want, to whom you want.
- 2-Way SMS: There are times when you want a response from your recipients. Bulk SMS doesn’t sort, categories, create other lists, poll, survey or perform other tasks with inbound messages. But you CAN get them. They’ll show up like emails or Twitter messages in your SMS Inbox.
- Analytics: You’ll see all the detail on message delivery, to whom the messages were sent, time and date, delivery status, and nice graphical representations of your campaigns.
- List & Group Management: It’s very easy to create as many groups as you want, including the ability to upload your lists from Excel, CSV or database files. You can track your analytics by the lists or groups to whom messages are delivered.
- Scheduled Messages: You can schedule individual messages such as meeting or appointment reminders or schedule messages to be delivered at certain times. When sending Internationally, you should never forget the time zone differences. In some places, it’s illegal to send SMS during certain times, like after 9 pm, before 8 am, on weekends or holidays. Be aware of the regulations where you send messages.
Pricing and Industry Terms
You don’t need to learn much, but it’s helpful to know a little of the lingo in this industry. Also, you should know we created a pricing model unlike any of our compeitors. Ours is SIMPLE. Theirs (for the most part) is not. First, realize that all inbound messages are FREE. This means, when a recipient REPLIES to your message, it’ll arrive in your INBOX and you won’t be charged. Unlike our competitors, our pricing schedules give you complete control over your budget, don’t lock you into an expensive monthly payment and when you buy messages for delivery, those messages don’t expire until they’re used. Our rates are some of the lowest in the industry and we have no hidden fees. Here are a few terms you should know as you learn about Mobile Marketing and Bulk Text Messaging:
- Rate Decks: This is actually the commercial term that’s used by carriers in the VoIP and wholesale SMS business. We use it here because we pass on wholesale prices for each country and carrier within that country to our customers. A Rate Deck is a table of message delivery rates. It usually has thousands of prices. To find the per-message price for the country you want, you just need to look it up in the Rate Deck.
- Opt-In / Opt-Out: This is derived from the term an “Option Into” a group of people who are willing to accept text messages on their cell phone from a company, organization or individual. The term is shortened to “Opt-In”. When you wish to quit receiving messages you “Opt-Out’. Usually this is done by simply sending a REPLY to a message (ie “Send STOP to discontinue receiving messages”).
- MO and MT: These stand for “Mobile Originate” and “Mobile Terminate”. Once you know these terms you’re REALLY an expert in the industry (wink!). Mobile Originate means the text message came from or ORIGINATED from the user’s cell phone. Typically, this happens when somebody sends your Keyword to our Short Code system. When your Keyword sends a message back to the user, or when you BLAST messages to your Opt-In users, this is known as MT, or “Mobile Terminate”. It means your message “Terminates” at the cell phone of your recipient. You’ll often see terms like this when reading about or discussing Mobile Marketing with professionals or others in the industry.
Check out our complete pricing schedules and Rate Deck for International Bulk SMS Service. When you’re ready, just register as a Client and buy the services you need. If you’re a registered Associate or Associate-Customer, you can also log into your back office to make the purchase.