Our Announcements feature allows you to send one message to a group of contacts, instead of texting each contact individually. You can also customize these messages using Variable fields. Variable Fields pull specific customer information like your customer's name into your Announcements.
To create an Announcement, select the Messaging Tools > Announcements, then click the blue New Announcement button.
Enter the title of your message (this is only seen internally) and the body of the text. Please note that the Announcements feature is not for marketing, sales pitches, or SPAM of any kind. However, Announcements do support MMS and attachments.
In the Recipients field, you can choose to send the Announcement a number of different ways:
- Manually enter contact phone numbers
- Select any number of contacts directly from your Address Book
- Send to contacts with a specific tag
- Upload a CSV file (download the CSV template here)
Please note that if you utilize the tagged contact option, you'll need to tag your contacts before the Announcement is sent or scheduled to be sent, in order to ensure that they are part of the correct group. Tagging contacts after you've scheduled an Announcement, but before it is sent will not add them to the recipients list. You can tag contacts by selecting the Edit icon next to their name in the Address Book, or in their information section in the Conversation Dashboard.
If you would like to include variable fields (pieces of information pulled from the customer's details), use the Upload a file option. Learn how to use variable fields here.
Then, select the Department - this will determine which phone number the Announcement comes from. If you only have one Textline phone number, you may skip this step. When you're send, click Send.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Sending mass messages over SMS is highly regulated, and there are legal restrictions around sending text messages for marketing purposes. The Announcements feature is intended to provide information to existing customers or contacts relevant to products or services that they have already purchased or that the customers have already agreed to be a part of. Please click here for more information on these regulations.
Due to the level of regulation, Textline will need to approve your first Announcement before it is sent to your customers. Once you've created and selected Send on your first Announcement, we will review the message and determine whether or not it has been approved. You will receive a notification when the message has been approved and sent.
If you would like to speed up your Announcements, the Smart SMS department is a great option. You can read more on Smart SMS and the effects it has on Announcement speeds here.