To enable text messaging, an organization must first purchase SMS credits within Slate. This may be done through the Message Credits or Message Numbers admin tools. Upon purchasing a block of SMS credits (please allow up to 60 minutes for the transaction to be registered), you can return to Database > Deliver Configuration to provision a sender number in an area code of your choosing. This will be the number that appears as the "Caller ID" for all outgoing texts and to which return texts will be sent. The first number is included with each instance, and each additional number costs $1/month.
Replying to Texts
Replies to text messages are delivered to the SMS Inbox available within Deliver. Text messages do not have subjects or other conversation identifiers, so text messages that are received to your numbers are displayed irrespective of any specific mailing. Clicking on an incoming message will display a conversation view of all texts to and from that number.
There is no capability for detecting "opens" with text messages on any platform, so this data will not be available. Link tracking may become available within Slate, but this is part of a separate feature release that involves per-recipient URL minimization.
Recipient Data Fees
The recipient may incur data and usage fees from their mobile provider for any text messages they receive, especially where they may not have an unlimited text messaging plan. You must capture permission to text message an individual before sending any text messages. This is generally accomplished by creating a custom field that is added to all external forms, such as an inquiry form and event registration forms.
Unsubscribing from Texts
Slate supports the standard messages for unsubscribing from text messages. Sending an unsubscribe message will only opt-out the mobile number from receiving future messages sent from the same mobile number used by the institution. In other words, the recipient could continue to receive text messages from other mobile numbers in use by the institution within Slate. A recipient simply needs to reply to a message with one of the following:
- STOP, STOPALL, UNSUBSCRIBE, CANCEL, END, and QUIT: unsubscribes the phone number.
- START and YES: re-subscribes the phone number. At this time, the recipient must directly opt back into text messaging by sending a "START" text, and the organization cannot act on behalf of the recipient in this regard.
- HELP and INFO: returns instructions about what other commands are available.
Opting out of text messaging will not opt the recipient out of any other communications (e.g., emails, postal mail), nor will it set the "Opt Out" tag.