OVERVIEW

 

Two-way messaging requires either a short code or long number that enables your customers to reply to your SMS messages. According to recent research, as many as 64% of customers want to be able to engage with companies via two-way messaging and acquiring a long number (also known as a virtual mobile number) enables businesses to do just that.

Enabling a long text number for your business will allow you to receive messages and replies from your customers, starting meaningful two-way conversations with them using your dedicated phone number. So, what is a virtual mobile number all about, how does it work, and how can it benefit your business?

What is a long number?

A two-way long number, as the name implies, are long telephone numbers which can be up to 16 digits in length but are usually the length of a standard local phone number.

Long numbers or virtual mobile numbers are cheaper to use than short codes and will allow your business to receive replies from local and selected international destinations.

 

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BENEFITS

What are the benefits of using a long number for your business?

The greatest advantage of using a two-way long number is pretty obvious – you’re enabling your customers to respond to your SMS messages, starting a dialogue with them that would otherwise not have been possible.

Long numbers are ideal for any SMS marketing campaign where it’s not important for you customers to remember your virtual mobile number and are the cornerstone of any great SMS campaign.


Here are just a few ways you can use a global SMS long number to grow your business:

Competitions

Invite your customers (and potential customers) to enter a competition by replying to your promotional messages with their name and phone number. This is a great way to build up your customer database and identify new leads.

Banking alerts

Two-way messaging is the perfect way to send SMS alerts about important activity in a customer’s banking account but can also be used as a virtual number for verification purposes and transactional SMS messages.

Customer Relationship Management

Personalized customer interactions have become essential in building closer relationships with your client base. Integrating two-way messaging with your existing CRM program is a breeze and automating workflows using SMS saves significant costs while improving the overall customer experience.

Appointment reminders and confirmations

We all know that time is money. And, when a customer forgets an appointment or fails to cancel their bookings, substantial losses are suffered. Sending out automated reminders using a two-way long number, allows customers to conveniently confirm, cancel, or reschedule their upcoming appointments.

Get valuable customer feedback with SMS surveys

Surveys are an easy way for your customers to rate products or services by simply scoring them or replying with a YES/NO to your long number to indicate whether they would make use of a service/product again. Measuring your customer satisfaction levels and gaining valuable feedback has never been easier.

Polling campaigns
feedback

A two-way SMS long number is a very cost effective way to gather votes in a polling campaign allowing you to measure customer loyalty, collect data, or understand what your customers want most.

Allow customers to opt-out or request more information

Customers who don’t want to receive specific marketing messages can reply via your dedicated phone number to opt-out or, alternatively, respond with a request for more information without having to make a phone call.

What are my options?

Short codes are registered by a national registry in either shared short codes (using specific keywords) or random (any numbers) and vanity (specific numbers chosen by you) short codes.

Random and vanity dedicated short codes

These are dedicated memorable shortcode numbers which means that you’ll be the only company that uses the number, allowing it to become synonymous with your brand ensuring consistency and brand recognition. You can either purchase a random short code which means that an available short code number will be assigned to you, or you could opt for a vanity short code which means you get to choose the number you want to use.

Shared short codes

For a more cost-effective solution, you can register a keyword on a shared short code, which means you will be assigned a unique SMS keyword but you will share the short code with other businesses. These short codes are great for competitions or lead generation for example, where customers can SMS your keyword and their details to the shared number to enter or request a quote or more information about your products and services.

HOW TO APPLY

How do I apply for a long number?

In just a few easy steps you’ll be able to start receiving replies to your messages and taking advantage of all the benefits that having a virtual mobile number offers.

You’ll need a Clickatell Platform account so if you don’t have one yet, now is the time to sign up for one.

If you’ve already got an account (good on you!) log in and follow these easy steps to apply for your long number.

 

Are there any restrictions or limitations to using a two-way long number?

A US long number can support a maximum of 5000 messages per day. You will automatically receive a warning message when you reach either of these limits.

When applying for your long number, we will display the local stock we have available. You may still be able to receive replies if your country is not listed by using a long number with international coverage.

In addition, each country or territory has its own restrictions and regulations around two-way messaging. Non-compliance may lead to non-delivery of messages, which is why it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the terms applicable to the relevant territories.

Clickatell Platform

Clickatell Platform is a powerful bulk SMS system that enables you to send messages securely, reliably, and instantly via the Clickatell REST API.

Platform is cloud-hosted, user-friendly and the wizard-driven code generation makes integration into your existing systems super easy. Platform is scalable, capable of delivering thousands of SMS messages per second, and completely customizable to suit your specific text messaging needs.

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