Know Before You Go: Do Your 10DLC Research

Scott Navratil

Text messaging campaigns are a great way to reach customers and prospects, but they’re not the answer to all communications needs. To begin with, they’re short. If you want to provide a quick update or announce a flash sale, they’re perfect; if you want to expound on the meaning of life, not so much. If you’re sure you can cover what you have to say in a couple dozen words or less, you still need to consider the following aspects. 

1. Use Cases: Not every product or service is created equal in the eyes of consumers or the law. Confirm the messaging requirements for your use case: depending on the industry you’re in, there may be some restrictions or special requirements for your messaging campaigns (think, for example, of sensitive topics like insurance or bank loans). 

And, some subjects are not permitted in messaging campaigns at all. For example, “SHAFT” messaging—short for “sex | hate | alcohol | firearms | tobacco” (which includes cannabis)—is never, ever, ever allowed. 

Not sure about your industry requirements? Review our Use Case ebook here. (Use cases apply to all types of text messaging campaigns, not just long code.) 

2. Messaging Format: Know which type of messaging makes the most sense for your business. Depending on the size and frequency of your campaigns, the speed with which you need to communicate, and the geographic distribution of your customers, you might do better with short code or toll-free messaging than long code. 

You can also read more about all three types of messaging in our “20 Ways to Get Your Text Message Across” eBook. 

Messaging type comparison chart

3. Messaging Budget: Plan your messaging budget, keeping in mind that pricing and additional fees vary from carrier to carrier. See chart for basic 10DLC pricing. 

Cost of messaging chart

You can see general pricing information on the Commio SMS/ MMS Surcharges page. But, don’t get intimidated by the various fees and penalties. A good communications service provider can help you set expectations. Speaking of which… 

4. Communications Service Providers (CSP): While it might seem early for selecting a provider, you should think about a CSP as your partner—someone who can help guide you through the planning, brand registration, and campaign approval process. Here are some important criteria to consider before choosing a CSP. 

  • Full service – If messaging campaigns could potentially become a significant part of your communications, or you’re not sure where to start, look for a provider that supports all types of messaging, including short code, long code, toll-free, and hosted messaging. If a CSP has good relationships with the carriers (or even qualifies as a carrier) so much the better! 
  • Strong customer vetting process – A good provider protects all their customers by scrutinizing each prospect carefully before accepting campaigns. While you may work hard to follow the rules, and a provider may encourage their customers to follow the rules, if a single customer turns out to be a bad actor, can shut down the provider’s entire pipeline! Messaging planning pull quote
  • Use case and messaging review – Choose an experienced provider with a consultative approach to help you select the right type of messaging, verify your use case, and help ensure your initial campaigns will be approved. 
  • Number provisioning – Long code campaigns typically utilize multiple phone numbers that align with the area codes you’re targeting, so you’ll want a provider with a good inventory of numbers who can get them assigned to you quickly. 
  • Messaging campaign budget – Your CSP can help you understand what the various fees entail, and estimate your initial costs. 
  • 24/7 expert support – Most importantly, you should confirm that the CSP you select has the expert guidance you need to get your long code campaigns approved, and 24/7 U.S.-based support if you have an issue. 

Not getting the help you need with your current CSP? TCR has made it easy to switch! The bottom line: Messaging has a lot of moving parts; your CSP should be your partner, and feel invested in your success. 

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See also: Introduction | Planning | 10DLC Infographic | Building Opt-in Lists | Registering Your Brand | Writing Your Message(s) | Registering Your Campaign(s) | Reviewing Campaign Success

Date posted: May 8, 2024

Topic: 10DLC Long Code   Messaging   Messaging API  

Tags: 10 DLC   10dlc   brand registry   campaign registry   long code   MMS   SMS  

Scott Navratil

Scott, a member of our Commio team, has held executive management positions at several top IP communications companies and was named one of Colorado Business Magazine’s most powerful salespeople. He is a regular speaker at national telecom events. Scott holds a B.A. in Meteorology from the University of Northern Colorado. Scott primarily enjoys spending time with his family in Colorado and also enjoys skiing, snowboarding, racing motorcycles, and astronomy.

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