This is an industry-wide change affecting every software platform that utilizes custom text messaging.

The Context

Text messaging (SMS) is a great way to reach your customers. With high delivery rates and amazing open rates (98%+), it's always been a way to communicate with your agents and clients on Spectora.

However, in recent years the amount of spam text messages has risen dramatically, including fraud, phishing attempts, and unwanted mass marketing text messages. In 2021, the major telecom companies (AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, etc.) announced a system and guidelines to fix this. It involves using algorithms to evaluate text messages and filter bad ones, potentially blocking the sending number.

Spectora has long offered custom local phone numbers as a way to enhance trust with your recipients. For $20/month, any text messages you send from our platform will come from your personal custom number. If you don't have a custom number, your text messages originate from our default 720 number, which is the sender of most of the texts on our platform.

The risks here are obvious once filtering enforcement begins in October 2021 - if anyone using Spectora gets flagged for spammy text messages, every single company using Spectora could see their text messages blocked. That is just too great a risk when thousands of businesses depend on Spectora.

The Impact

Starting September 30th, we will require custom numbers if you would like to send custom text messages. This allows every company to control their own sending reputation and not be at risk from other users of the system. This applies to:

  • All users of text messages via our Automation system IF you have changed text messages from the default template

  • All Spectora Advanced users using text messages via Actions

If you don't want to purchase a custom number you can still use text messaging but you'll be limited to our default text message templates.

If you use custom texts and you do not purchase a custom phone number by September 30th:

  • Automation users will see their text messages reverted back to the default templates

  • Actions users will see their text message Actions disabled

We hope this solution allows businesses that find great value in text messaging to continue to use it, while those that do not use texting won't have to spend anything more. The monthly cost of custom numbers help us cover the costs to code these additional requirements, buy and maintain these numbers, register your business with the telecom companies, and keep up with the increasing costs of text messaging.

To draw a metaphor to your business, this is similar to finding out that radon test kits are getting more expensive and there will be more regulation on them that you must comply with. Of course you would increase the price for radon inspections!

Here's how to purchase a custom phone number and ensure your current texting setup keeps working.

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