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Bulk Text Messages


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Last Updated: 07/16/2019

You can use your text-enabled tracking numbers to send bulk text messages through the CTM system. This is an easy way to quickly send a text message to a list of your customers.  Bulk messages can be sent once, pre-configured to be sent at a later time, or set to a recurring schedule.  You can also save and re-use canned messages and opt out statements to include in your bulk texts.

Text messages are broken into units of 160 characters for the purposes of billing.  You may compose messages of up to 800 characters at a time using this interface, but every 160 characters will be billed as an individual message.  Special characters may use more than a single character when composing a message.

To learn more about sending a single text message, see the full article here.

To learn more about enabling texting on your tracking numbers, see the full article here.

 

Sending a Bulk Message

Once you have at least one text-enabled tracking number in your account, you can create or view your bulk messages from the Bulk Message Log in your account.

  1. Navigate to Texts → Bulk Message Log.
  2. Click New Bulk Message in the upper right corner.
  3. Enter an optional description and the message you would like to send.
    • Click Add attachment to include a JPEG, PNG, GIF, or vCard file with this message (the maximum file size is 4MB).  Not all phone numbers are capable of receiving or sending images or vCards. Messages with attachments are sent as MMS instead of SMS.
  4. If you would like to include a canned message or opt out statement, use the Include an Opt Out Message? drop-down to select from one of your saved messages.  See “Opt Out Messages” below to learn how to create a saved message.
  5. In the Recipients section, you may choose to upload a list of contacts or add them manually.
    • To upload a list, select the country code for the numbers you wish to contact, then click “choose file” and select the CSV file to upload.  Use the “select column” drop-down to designate which column in the spreadsheet contains the phone numbers you wish to contact.
    • To add numbers manually, click “Manual Add,” then type or paste the list of phone numbers you wish to contact.  Enter one number on each line.  Each number must be formatted to include the country code with no spaces or punctuation (ex: +15551234567).
  6. In the From Numbers section, set the Time to delivery.  Based on this setting and the number of messages you will be sending, the system will recommend the number of tracking numbers you’ll need to use for your desired delivery timeframe.  By default, this is set to 8 hours.
  7. Next, choose the tracking numbers that will be used to send the message.  The system will estimate a recommended number of tracking numbers you will need to send your message in the time selected.  Click the numbers in the list on the left to move them to the list on the right.  If no numbers are selected, the best matching number will be used for each recipient.
  8. Check the “Confirm Mobile Recipients” box to enable a check that will confirm whether each recipient number is a mobile number.  Selecting this option adds a small charge per phone number for validation.
  9. In the Schedule section, choose when you would like your message to be sent.
    • Send Now will being sending the message when you click Schedule Bulk Message.
    • Send Later will send this message at a date and time you select.
    • Send Recurring will allow you to choose whether to send this message daily, weekly, or monthly.  Select your preferred options and the starting date and time.
  10. Review all of your selected options, then click Scheduled Bulk Message to confirm.

 

Opt Out Messages

“Opt Out Messages” are saved canned messages that you can use as a shortcut when sending bulk texts.  You can save a complete message, or save part of a message you know you’ll use often.

To create a new saved message:

  1. While composing a bulk message, click Add a New Opt Out Message.
  2. Enter the message you wish to save.  A maximum of 160 characters can be saved in a single opt out message.
  3. Click Save.

The saved messages you have created will appear in the “Include an Opt Out Message” drop-down menu.  If you need to remove any of your saved messages, click “Delete Opt Out Messages” and choose the message you wish to remove.

 

Editing Scheduled Messages

If a message is scheduled for a future time, you can make changes before it is sent. When you are editing a scheduled message, you can also click Cancel Bulk Message to cancel the scheduled message.

  1. Navigate to Texts → Bulk Message Log.
  2. Locate the unsent message you wish to edit and click Edit.
  3. From here, you can change all aspects of the bulk message except for the scheduled date and time.  Make any changes as needed.
  4. Click Save Changes to update your message.  Or, if you need to cancel the message, click Cancel Bulk Message.

 

Monitoring Bulk Texts (Bulk Text Log)

The bulk text log will show a history of all the bulk texts you have sent or scheduled in your account.  The log will show the description, from numbers, message, number of recipients, and whether the message is set to be recurring.  For sent messages, you will see how many messages were blocked as well as the percentages of queued, sent, delivered, undelivered, and failed messages.  You will also see the send time, last message time, the date the message was created, and the overall status of the bulk message.

If the bulk message has already been sent, you can view a summary of details about the message, including the status, tracking number that sent the message, the list of recipients, the body of the message and the send and completion times of the message.

  1. Navigate to Texts → Bulk Message Log.
  2. Locate the sent message you wish to view and click View.
  3. On the summary page, you will see the following details about the sent bulk message:
    • Status indicates whether the bulk message successfully completed.
    • From Numbers shows the tracking numbers used to send the message.
    • Recipients shows the total number of recipients the message was sent to.
    • Message displays the message that was sent.
    • Send Time shows when the message began to send.
    • Last Message shows the time when the last message was sent.

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