Like e-mail messages, SMS messages can be sent and received through Slate’s Inbox feature. Mobile Inbox allows for bi-directional SMS communication, directly associating a text conversation with the appropriate student record based on mobile number, and allowing for automation and pre-written response options.
Multiple SMS numbers may be provisioned for different staff members, and inbound SMS messages can be routed straight to Inbox with real-time updates. Numbers can be associated with Inbox Groups as well as Inbox Users to facilitate one-on-one communication between staff and prospective applicants.
Configure a Mobile / SMS Inbox Account
To configure a Mobile/SMS Inbox Account:
- Click Database in the top navigation bar and select Deliver Configuration.
- Click Add Account.
- Select SMS/Voice as the Service. Credits will need to be purchased before setting up an SMS/Voice Number. Multiple SMS/Voice accounts can be added, and there is no limit to the number of SMS/Voice accounts that can be provisioned. The first number is included with each instance, and each additional number costs $1/month.
- Select the country and area code for the new number. Specify the digits that the number should contain, if necessary, and enter a zip code to see numbers available in a certain area. A list of available numbers will then be generated from which to choose.
- Once a number is selected, give the account a user-friendly name (i.e. Test Counselor’s number). The name will be used to identify which number to choose for text replies or Deliver campaigns. The ID will be the specific number that the student will see when receiving or replying to a text.
- To connect an SMS/Voice account to Inbox, simply update the "SMS Inbox Group" from "Legacy SMS Inbox" to one of the other available Inbox groups.
Note: at least one Inbox group must be set up before it will be selectable here.
- If staff members will have their own number, associate a user with the number. An inbound SMS will automatically be assigned to the user associated with the reply number.
If SMS message replies are not appearing in Inbox, the SMS/Voice account may still be associated with Legacy SMS Inbox. Make sure the number is configured to an available Inbox group to see text replies in Inbox! Creating a specific Inbox group and Inbox Role for SMS (i.e. SMS Admissions Inbox) is a good idea.
Do numbers need to be associated with a specific user?
The User setting may be left blank if multiple users will be sharing a single SMS/Voice account. Replies to a number without an associated user will initially be routed to the "Unassigned" folder in Inbox.
Once an SMS/Voice account has been associated with an Inbox group, visit the Inbox module from a browser or the Slate Mobile App to send and receive SMS messages in real-time with Mobile Inbox.
Automated responses, automatic message assignments to staff members, and incoming message notifications can be set-up to help manage communication flow. Please see the Inbox documentation in Slate Scholar for further information.
If an SMS message received via Inbox is not automatically matching on a person record - despite that phone number being associated with the record - the phone number is likely not being stored with a 'Type' of Mobile Phone.