If you own a business, have you ever stopped to consider how text messaging could help you when promoting and marketing your company? We live in a world where modern communications are used on a regular basis to deliver business to business (B2B) messages and business to customer (B2C) messages.
Amongst all of this technology there is a simple and effective way to deliver your messages; texting. SMS marketing allows you to send your message to a number of contacts, straight to their mobile phones. This makes it incredibly effective, and also a very powerful marketing platform and this can be achieved by using an SMS gateway provider.
The easy and straightforward thing about SMS gateway providers is that they develop and integrate an SMS API for the current software your business or company uses. That means you have complete control over what you send and who you send it to. Before we get into that, let’s start at the beginning.
What is an SMS gateway provider?
These are companies that offer text message services to other businesses or companies looking to take advantage of low cost bulk SMS marketing campaigns. SMS marketing, or text marketing as it’s also known, allows you to inform your customers about the latest products you have in store, send them offers and promotions, send them seasonal messages and even order updates. It’s a simple and effective process, made easier by the development of SMS API’s.
So what is an API and what does it do?
The SMS API is your gateway. It stands for Application Programme Interface and basically means that you get to build SMS text messaging into your applications. Any software, application, server or website that you want to use, an SMS API will allow you to send and receive text messages accordingly.
The way it works is clever. It’s a piece of coding that sits between your programme and the gateway service provider that you received the code from. This makes it incredibly simple for developers and coders to implement and the best bit is that this is usually completely free. All a business has to pay for are the texts they send, and in some cases you’ll get free credits when you sign up to a gateway provider anyway.
The benefits of an SMS API
This coding has revolutionised the way that businesses send text messages. Not only do they retain complete control over what they send and who they send it to, but they get to use programmes familiar to them. This saves time, and means any business can get their message sent to who they want in an instant.
Above anything else though, it makes sending text messages much more affordable. All you have to pay for are the texts you send, and the more credits you buy, the more texts you’ll be able to send for your money. For businesses sending multiple text messages, this makes perfect sense.
How to get started
You need to connect your application. Simply find the right SMS gateway provider and all the documentation and code will be right in front of you. Depending on the provider, they’ll assist you if you need help programming the code, but for established developers, this’ll be a doddle.
So, find the right provider, and set up an account. From here you’ll see all the cool coding to make it happen. Depending on the provider, this will be made available in multiple different programming languages such as PHP, Java and C#.
There are hundreds of applications that can benefit from SMS API’s, and depending on the provider you choose, there are new API’s being developed all the time for lots of different programmes and software. In fact, many providers will endeavour to integrate their SMS service all the time, so if your software isn’t compatible, don’t be disheartened, as their developers will act quickly to make this work.
Whatever your chosen software, be sure to integrate an SMS provider and reach out to your customers today. SMS marketing works, and SMS API’s makes it even easier for you to keep in touch with your most important asset, your customers.
Henry Cazalet is a Director at Text Marketer, a leading SMS Marketing firm. Operating since 1999, Text Marketer has been offering text message marketing solutions to a number of high profile clients. They offer a full range of SMS marketing solutions, including a Bulk SMS service.
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