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This allows people to text a custom keyword to a dedicated virtual number or shortcode. Through custom keywords, users can opt-in to a service with minimal effort. Once a keyword is triggered, an autoresponder can be set to guide the user to the next step. They can also activate different functions, which include entering a contest, forwarding to an email or mobile number, group chat, and sending an auto response.


Over the past few years SMS marketing has become a legitimate advertising channel in some parts of the world. This is because unlike email over the public internet, the carriers who police their own networks have set guidelines and best practices for the mobile media industry (including mobile advertising). The IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) and the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA), as well, have established guidelines and are evangelizing the use of the mobile channel for marketers. While this has been fruitful in developed regions such as North America, Western Europe and some other countries, mobile SPAM messages (SMS sent to mobile subscribers without a legitimate and explicit opt-in by the subscriber) remain an issue in many other parts of the world, partly due to the carriers selling their member databases to third parties. In India, however, government's efforts of creating National Do Not Call Registry have helped cellphone users to stop SMS advertisements by sending a simple SMS or calling 1909.[5][6]
In order to gain their mobile number, they will have to have a great deal of trust in you and a pre-existing relationship will help. They also need to know that what you'll be sending them via SMS message is exclusive offers, not the same offer that you give via email and social media. Be clear with your customers and use the following guidelines when introducing SMS marketing to your customers:
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