SMS is now considered the de facto communication, advertising and marketing tool. The reason is because SMS is cheap, quick and convenient. It also guarantees timely delivery which is so important in today’s competitive times. Basic SMS is more often than not used to communicate within a small group of friends, colleagues or family. It is a fantastic personal communication tool. But bulk SMS is altogether a different ball game. It is a way of sending a common message, typically Ad campaign to thousands of mobile phone subscribers, to popularize products or services quickly.
Bulk SMS is a cheap way to promote business. The cost of SMS platform is dropping to astonishing levels. Cheap Bulk SMS is becoming popular even with small business enterprises. Today, there is not a single industry which is not utilizing bulk SMS service.
Everyone knows the limits of email marketing and other digital marketing platforms which invariably cost a bomb and require technical people to get the desired results.
Bulk SMS is sent with the help of web based software, desktop application or email plug-in which is provided by bulk SMS companies.
SMS in its basic avatar has some inherent limitations. It is typically a one way marketing platform which lacks the functionality to receive a response or feedback from the recipients. Short Code, a subset of SMS fulfils this gap. It allows recipients to interact with the marketers by responding to their messages. This is typically done via short codes.
Subscribers are charged at premium rates while responding to short codes. Short codes are 5 or 6 digit numbers which are easy to remember because of their catchy format. For example a number like 565656 is difficult to forget. These numbers along with keywords allow recipients to send back messages. Typical application areas include voting during reality shows, song request on radio programs, product feedback etc.
Here is how short codes work. Imagine a television reality show asking viewers to vote for their favourite contestant. As a viewer, you simply need to type VOTE, name of the contestant and send it to 565656. Now isn’t that easy?
Short codes are available in two flavours, shared and dedicated. In shared version many marketers share the same number. Messages are typically identified with the help of keywords. In dedicated version only a single entity is allowed to use the number.
SMS or short message service is a feature which is built into a mobile phone to send and Text Messaging; not exceeding 160 characters. It is one of the most popular and discreet way of communicating with friends and colleagues. The procedure is quite simple; compose a message, select the recipients or attach a group of people and send it. Your message is instantly delivered via SMS gateway to respective numbers. In case of overload the messages are queued in SMSC centres before despatching them.
The main purpose of SMSC or short message service centre is to route SMS messages and regulate the process.
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