Short codes and virtual mobile numbers

Learn about short codes and virtual mobile numbers for your SMS campaigns.

Overview

You can use SMS short codes for promotions, enquiries, surveys, mobile coupons and more. They're short, easily recognisable, and offer your customers a memorable way to get in touch. 

Virtual mobile numbers are 11 digit numbers used to receive SMS messages back to your Engagement Cloud account. You can use your virtual mobile number for promotions, enquiries, surveys, mobile coupons and more.

Short codes

You can either have a shared or dedicated short code. 

Shared short code

Many different people and organisations use the same shared short code. However, every user has a unique keyword to go with it. This keyword is included at the start of every text and directs the message to the correct account's inbox.

Let's look at an example

The company, SnowYo, have the short code 87800 and the keyword SNOW. Their customers send messages to 87800 and must include the keyword SNOW as the first word of their message.

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Dedicated short code

If you use a dedicated short code, this means that you own that number and every message sent to it goes into your account – no matter what the first word of the text message is. Owning a dedicated short code is a great option for large-volume SMS senders.

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Virtual mobile numbers

You can either have a shared or dedicated virtual mobile number. Most users go for a dedicated virtual number.

Shared virtual mobile number

Many different people and organisations use the same virtual mobile number. However, every user has a unique keyword to go with it. This keyword is included at the start of every text and directs the message to the correct account's inbox.

Let's look at an example

The company, SnowYo, have the virtual mobile number 07000000000 and the keyword SNOW. Their customers send messages to 07000000000 and must include the keyword SNOW as the first word of their message.

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Dedicated virtual mobile number

A dedicated virtual mobile number is your number, and you are the only one using it – you can post it anywhere you want. These unique numbers are ideal because your customers can store them on their phone and always know where a message has come from. 

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Advantages of a dedicated virtual mobile number

  • You have your own number which means there’s a single point of contact. You can publish this number on flyers, posters, websites, and so on. They're great for communication, marketing and Customer Relationship Management (CRM).
  • Your messages arrive from the same number each time, so your contacts can save them under your name. This helps to increase brand awareness and the likelihood of the message being acted on.
  • Enables incoming and outgoing channels for messages so that you don’t have to be the one making initial contact. Your contacts can text straight to your number.
  • You receive all messages sent to this number, they don’t have to start with a specific word. This is great for multiple campaigns, text conversations and ongoing relationships with the same people.
  • Mobile numbers are automatically captured. This is great for building your contact list.
  • Looks and behaves like a mobile number, so your contacts won’t have to worry that they might be texting a premium rate number.
  • Messages sent into this number cost you nothing. So, for just a small set monthly price, it is one of the most effective marketing and communication tools around.

See also

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