How to avoid sending spam messages?
Why do carriers have content and spam filters?
When subscribers receive messages they find objectionable, they may file complaints or report the carrier to governing bodies, seek damages, or simply stop being a customer. All of these things reduce the revenue or increase costs for carriers. Thus, it is in the best interest of carriers to protect their subscribers from what they consider to be objectionable content.
How do carriers filter messages?
There is no standard practice for carrier filtering across all carriers. For some, filtering can range from a simple static list of prohibited terms to advanced machine learning systems that work in real time. Regardless of the system, carriers keep their filtering systems closely guarded secrets. In turn, we cannot say definitively how these systems work or why a particular message was filtered.
How do I know if my messages are being filtered?
You can track the status of the SMS from the ‘Delivered’ checkbox on SMS History object in relation with Error Code and Error Message field. If 360 SMS App knows that a message has been filtered, we will pass this information to you by updating the ‘Error Code’ and ‘Error Message’ field in Salesforce. The error code we will use when we know that carrier filtering has taken place is 30007.
How do I prevent my messages from being filtered?
If you see an increase in carrier filtering on your messages, following are some useful Guidelines for sending messages:
- Get opt-in consent from each end user before sending any communication to them, particularly for marketing or other non-essential communications.
- Only communicate during an end user’s daytime hours unless it is urgent.
- 360 SMS App has an inbuilt functionality to work for incoming messages which equal STOP to support campaigns and you can use configure similar opt-out keywords from SMS Setup | General Settings | Unsubscribe keywords in the end user’s local language.
- Do not contact end users on do-not-call or do-not-disturb registries.
- Messages sent on long codes should vary their content instead of repeatedly sending identical content. Always allow variations as repeated content may lead to your number being marked as spam. The filter mechanism of end- user’s telecom providers are not disclosed although varied message content can avoid spamming.
- If you are sending messages from List views then wait for minimum 4- 5 minutes before sending to the next lot, this would ensure messages are delivered on time as each message is sent at 1 sec per SMS limit.
- Is a single number being overworked?
If you need to send thousands of messages at the same time, then we recommend using co-pilot feature of SMS App to distribute SMS traffic from 1 number to multiple long codes. For instance, if you have 10 long codes and you need to send 50,000 messages in one go, then the app would automatically distribute the traffic of 5,000 messages per number. The app would automatically ensure that next time you reply to your end- user then the same number is used to communicate with them. This way, your end- users would recognize you with your 1 long code only and not varied long codes.
- If you are sending a high volume of identical messages, the carriers in the country you are sending to may require that this traffic is sent from a shortcode.
The United States and Canada filtering
Carriers in the U.S. and Canada appear to be using adaptive (machine learning) software systems to protect their users. These systems factor in both the rate of send, as well as the content of the messages and behave very much like email filtering systems. Messages receive a cumulative score based on how many messages have come from a phone number during a time period, how many similar messages have transited the carrier’s network, or if the message contains content that makes it a high match for spam. Time periods are measured by the second, minute, hour and day.
360 SMS App does not definitively know how many messages can be sent from a long code before a user can expect to hit a filter. However, we highly recommend following the guidelines.
I think my number has been blacklisted by a carrier. Can I get it removed?
No. However most blacklists in the US and Canada use a “cooling off” period, which means that most numbers will automatically be removed from the blacklist after a period of time. This period of time varies based on how many messages were blocked by the carrier from this number, and carriers do not share this time period with us.
Can I get my messages whitelisted by the carriers?
US Carriers do not whitelist messages from long code numbers. Shortcodes are essentially numbers which have been whitelisted for a particular type of pre-approved traffic. If you are sending many messages with identical content to a large number of users, you are at high risk of having your messages filtered by carriers and should consider a shortcode.