<span class="platform-hero__heading--blue">Bulk SMS:</span> Cut through the noise to reach more customers & boost sales

Bulk SMS is a great way for businesses to send the same message or promotional offer to multiple customers at once. That’s because it has a nearly four times greater open rate and eight times higher response rate than email. Try Textline’s bulk texting service for FREE for 14 days, no credit card required.

Textline’s bulk SMS platform is trusted by thousands of customers

Businesses of all shapes and sizes love and trust Textline for their bulk SMS needs. Communicate with customers at scale with the top-rated SMS software on Capterra.

<span class="platform__quote">“Textline has been a major game changer as we migrate from traditional call and email to SMS communications! <span class="platform__quote--blue60">… Kudos to Textline, a definite value add, and an even better investment!</span></q></span>

<span class="platform__quote__author">Addie B.,<span class="platform__quote__author--blue60"> Capterra</span></span>

A screenshot of a text message

What is a bulk SMS platform and what is bulk SMS marketing?

A bulk SMS platform enables businesses to send a mass text message to customers, employees, or prospects at the same time. Bulk SMS makes communicating with and marketing to your subscribed contacts easy and efficient.

You can send a bulk text to hundreds or even thousands of customers at the same time. Businesses use bulk texting to send payment alerts, event reminders, marketing messages, and more.

Bulk SMS marketing, also called text message marketing, is used by businesses to cut through the noise to get promotional messages to customers at scale. It is a mobile marketing tactic that is highly effective because the average text message is read within three minutes and it reaches customers in their preferred medium – texting! Businesses use SMS marketing to share marketing messages, event promotions, coupons, discounts, announcements, updates, and more. 

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There are numerous benefits to bulk text messaging

Save time by reaching many customers at once

Don’t waste time sending one message over and over. Instead, save time and effort by sending a single message to many contacts at the same time.

Ensure customers see your messages

Texts have a 98 percent open rate and 45 percent response rate, making them an effective way to engage customers and ensure your messages are seen.

Keep messages personalized

Even though a bulk text is sent to multiple people at the same time, you can still personalize each message with custom fields like first name, appointment time, and more.

Works for businesses of all sizes

Bulk text messaging works for all businesses no matter the size, industry, or budget. Texting is a familiar business communication channel that makes it easy to connect with customers.

What features will make bulk texting a success for your business?

Each bulk texting platform in the market has different features. However, there are some key ones to keep in mind when deciding what platform will work best for your business. Textline’s robust bulk text messaging platform will ensure you are set up for success with these features.

Opt-in and opt-out feature

<div class="platform__mb40">Any bulk texting service should allow customers to easily opt-in and out of messages with terms like “START,” “STOP,” and “UNSUBSCRIBE.” Before selecting a bulk SMS provider, make sure they offer this capability. Without it, you may be illegally texting your contacts.</div>

Familiarity with The Campaign Registry

<div class="platform__mb40">Any bulk texting service you select should be familiar with The Campaign Registry, which helps protect customers from SPAM messages. Businesses using 10-digit long code numbers, also called 10DLC, to text their customers must sign up for the registry or could face penalties like deliverability issues and fines.</div>

Two-way conversations

<div class="platform__mb40">Given the high response rate to texts, make sure your SMS platform allows you to reply back and communicate with customers that respond to your bulk text message. This will increase the likelihood of a positive response to bulk messages and allow you to have personal interactions with your contacts to build longer-lasting relationships.</div>

Contact segmentation

<div class="platform__mb40">Find a bulk texting service that allows you to segment your larger contact list into smaller groups and categories. This will drive better results and ensure your messages are relevant to each customer.</div>

Smart SMS

To ensure speedy delivery of bulk texts and that you can send mass messages from multiple area codes, look for an SMS platform that has smart SMS. Textline’s feature allows you to send mass messages up to 400x faster and allows customers to send messages from multiple area codes to improve response rate and ensure localized segmentation.

Seamless contact upload

<div class="platform__mb40">Find a bulk texting service that makes it easy to upload your subscribed contacts. Textline allows you to manually upload contacts, use a CSV file, or access an existing address book. We also have an open application programming interface that allows you to connect other contact sources.</div>

Message templates

<div class="platform__mb40">Pick a bulk texting service that allows users to create and store their own message templates. This will streamline communication and help save time and effort when it comes to recurring messages.</div>

Performance tracking

<div class="platform__mb40">Choose a bulk texting service that lets you track message performance with ease. Textline allows users to track stats like replies, opt-outs, delivery errors, and more.</div>

Message scheduling

<div class="platform__mb40">Ensure you can send bulk texts at the appropriate time, no matter what your schedule looks like by picking a platform that allows you to both send mass messages immediately and schedule them ahead of time.</div>

Automation

A bulk text messaging platform that supports automation can bring with it time-saving possibilities. This will allow you to spend more time on conversations that matter the most. With Textline’s automation feature you can set up an automated welcome message, schedule a survey to send a week after a product is purchased, send weekly reminders, and more.

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Reach customers quickly and at scale with Textline’s bulk text messaging service

Both large and small businesses use bulk SMS platforms for many use cases. Here are just a few examples:

SMS marketing campaigns

Bulk SMS is often used for text message marketing, such as sending a welcome discount to newly subscribed contacts or promoting a flash sale. With high open rates and response rates, SMS is a great marketing channel to reach the right audience.

Appointment reminders

Bulk texts can come in handy for sending appointment reminders and other transactional SMS messages. Instead of sending individual text messages to each customer, a business could send every client on the books for the week a text reminder at the same time.

Payment reminders

Another use case for bulk SMS is sending payment reminders, such as a text blast to residents announcing rent is due tomorrow. 

Account management

Use bulk SMS to check in with multiple customers at once about a recent purchase, how satisfied a customer is with a recent service, or to schedule their next annual service appointment.

Internal team memos

Customers at Textline use bulk messaging to send their employees important memos and reminders. SMS particularly comes in handy for customers who have teams that are not behind a computer to check email. 

Broadcast important alerts

Another use case is sending important must-read updates or mobile text alerts to a group of customers or employees. This can include alerts about road closures, office closures, weather reminders, and more.

Sales lead follow-up

Another way customers use bulk texting is by following up with sales leads. You can send a bulk message to a batch of leads to remind them about an upcoming demo, schedule an initial call, or check in to see if they made any decisions.

Recruitment

Another use case for mass texting is for recruiters to reach out to a list of candidates about scheduling an interview for a particular job.

Thank you or holiday messages

If you want to thank a group of customers for their business or send a holiday text message to your entire contact list, bulk texting is a great solution.

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Bulk text messaging frequently asked questions

Is bulk texting legal?

Yes! Sending bulk texts to subscribed contacts is legal. But, there are several rules businesses must follow to comply with the laws that regulate texting, including the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991. One main aspect of the TCPA is getting written or verbal consent from all of your contacts. Opt-ins can be obtained by sending a text to join, having customers fill out a form, or asking your customers to text you first. Read more about how to obtain opt-ins here. 

In addition to obtaining an opt-in, you must also provide a way for your contact to opt out of receiving messages from your business. This means ensuring customers can reply to the message with words such as STOP, CANCEL, END, QUIT, UNSUBSCRIBE. 

Additionally, companies that want to text with their customers must register for The Campaign Registry, which was created by mobile network operators like Verizon and T-Mobile to decrease the number of SPAM messages sent to consumers. The Campaign Registry is used by the carriers to ensure that your phone number used to text and the messages being sent from it are legitimate.

Businesses using 10-digit long code numbers to text their customers must sign up for The Campaign Registry. If you don’t sign up, you could face message deliverability issues, fines, or the risk of being blocked. While these are a few of the rules, there are others to keep in mind. Read our blog on how to ensure you are legally texting your customers to learn more. 

Can I send bulk texts from my cellphone?

If you want to send bulk texts from a mobile phone, you should consider using a mobile app offered by a bulk texting service like Textline. That’s because mobile messaging apps like Apple’s iMessage and Android’s Messages do not support sending bulk texts to a large number of people, do not allow people to seamlessly opt out, and are not approved for SMS marketing.

To go into greater detail, native messaging apps on cell phone limit the number of contacts you can send a message to. Specifically, most messages can only be sent to about 10 recipients. Additionally, if a customer replies to a bulk message, native mobile apps don’t initiate one-on-one conversations with them. Instead, the replies are sent to the entire group. Further, group messaging is not yet approved for marketing use cases as people can’t opt out of group texts through replies like STOP or UNSUBSCRIBE.

Can I send bulk texts to anyone?

You can send bulk SMS texts to anyone who has opted to receive text messages from your business. Make sure that when customers opt in, they understand what types of messages they will receive from you. 

What are some best practices for bulk texting?

There are several things to keep in mind when sending mass texts. Here are a few:

  • Always get an opt-in 
  • Be clear about the types of messages your contacts are opting into
  • Don’t send too many messages
  • Include a way to opt-out
  • Send the message during business hours
  • Personalize the message
  • Tailor the text to your target audience
  • Get a plan in place for managing replies

To learn more dos and don’ts of bulk texting, read our blog or help center article

What types of phone numbers can I use to send bulk texts?

There are three types of phone numbers you can use to send mass texts: 10-digit long codes, dedicated short codes, or toll-free numbers. 10DLC are local long-code numbers that are approved for two-way SMS messaging. Dedicated short codes are four, five, or six-digit codes for texting campaigns and are often used for one-way text blasts. Toll-free numbers allow businesses to send and receive SMS messages from an 800 number. 

Each type of phone number has pros and cons, but Textline recommends using a 10DLC number. 10DLC is the new standard long code for application-to-person, or A2P, texting in North America. These numbers are more recognizable, enable two-way texting, and are cheaper than short codes (which can cost upwards of $1,000 per month.)

Can I personalize bulk texts?

Yes! With Textline, you can use variable fields to pull specific customer information, such as name, company, job title, date, time, and more into your bulk texts. 

How much does it cost to send a bulk text campaign?

Pricing depends on your bulk SMS service provider and the number of messages you plan to send. Textline offers customers three different pricing plans based on their business needs. You can also fill out our Enterprise Form if you have special requests. We’ll work together to figure out the best plan for you.

All pricing plans start with a 14-day free trial that includes unlimited two-way texting and no hidden setup fees. 

How do businesses use bulk text messaging?

Businesses and business owners use bulk messaging for many reasons. Below we break down several use cases across sales and marketing, support, operations, and recruiting.

Sales/marketing

  • Follow up with a group of leads simultaneously 
  • Alert customers or potential customers about a product restock 
  • Send an annual appointment reminder
  • Send promotional offers like discounts

Customer support

  • Proactively alert customers about an issue, such as shipping delays
  • Follow up with a group that recently contacted your support line
  • Follow up with customers who provided survey feedback
  • Send a text to help a group of customers reschedule a delivery, service, or appointment

Customer service

  • Send an NPS or CSAT survey to a group of customers
  • Send an appointment reminder or product purchase confirmation
  • Check-in with a group of customers about a recent purchase
  • Thank a group of customers for their business to boost customer engagement

Recruiting

  • Reach a group of candidates at once to schedule a phone screen
  • Reach out to a group to fill temporary work assignments 
  • Send interview reminders to multiple candidates at once
  • Inform candidates who weren’t selected for a job

Operations

  • Send employees an important memo or reminder
  • Solicit employee feedback via text 
  • Ask a group of employees if they can pick up an open shift
  • Give a shout-out to a group of employees for a successful quarter

Why should I consider SMS as a marketing channel?

There are many benefits to using SMS marketing. Here are a few to note: 

  • The average click-through rate for promotional messages sent via SMS is 9.18 percent higher than any other digital channel
  • Texting has a high open rate of 98 percent
  • The average text message is read within three minutes so brands can share updates with customers quickly
  • Texting has a 45 percent response rate and allows for personal two-way conversations
  • 81 percent of Americans text regularly
  • 64 percent of consumers say that businesses should use SMS more frequently to connect with them

Can you send photos, links, PDFs, or other multimedia in bulk texts?

Yes! Keep in mind that sending these items would make the message a multimedia message, also known as an MMS. Keep in mind that MMS costs more to send, but also are more engaging!

Can you send emojis in bulk texts?

Yes! Many texting platforms, including Textline, allow you to send recipients emojis in your mass messages. Feel free to add emojis that fit your messaging and add a personal touch. 

Do you have to reply to bulk text messages?

No. Just like you do with regular text messages, recipients have the option to reply or not reply. Additionally, when it comes to responding to your contacts’ replies to bulk messages, you also have the option to reply or not reply.

Is there a limit to how many bulk texts you can send?

With Textline, you can send an unlimited number of bulk SMS messages and bulk SMS campaigns. However, a best practice is to make sure you are not sending customers too many of these text blasts per month. 

How long does it take to send a bulk text?

Regulations typically limit the send time to one SMS per second per phone number. However, with Textline’s Smart SMS, you can increase that rate based on the number of phone numbers you have tied to your account. Read more about our smart SMS message feature here.

Is my business a good fit for bulk text messaging?

Chances are, yes! The Textline team is happy to help you understand how your business can best use bulk text messaging to reach your customers, team members, or leads at scale. Sign up for a free demo here, contact us here, or text us at +1 415-849-4349.

Can you help me set up my first bulk text message?

Yes! A Textline team member is more than happy to help you set up and schedule your first bulk text message on our platform. You can text us at +1 415-849-4349 to get started in minutes. Plus, there are no setup fees with our 14-day free trial.

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