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I Want to Talk to you About Bulk SMS List Cleansing. No Wait, Come Back.

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I stole that idea for a headline from David Mitchell’s piece in the Observer last weekend. He was referring to the absurd NHS IT system, but it’s exactly the same reaction you can expect if you raise the mind numbingly dull topic of list cleansing for bulk SMS. You can almost feel people clicking away with every passing word. Dull the subject may be but unfortunately it’s also really important. Why? Because by cleansing your bulk SMS lists you can save yourself a small fortune by not sending bulk SMS campaigns to mobile numbers that cannot receive them. (Still with me?)

So there are two ways that you can cleanse your bulk SMS data. The first is to clean up your data as much as you possibly can before uploading your bulk SMS list into your account. Unfortunately there is no cost effective way of telling whether a number is dead before actually sending a message to it. What you can do though is make sure that your numbers all start with 07, so they are at least proper mobile numbers as opposed to landline numbers which normally start 01. You can also check that the bulk SMS list has the correct number of characters. Any number that is too long or short will obviously be a wasted text. You can easily sort your bulk SMS data in Excel and get rid of the numbers that are not formatted correctly.

Bulk SMS Cost Saving

So once you have your ducks in a row so to speak, you can send out your bulk SMS campaign. So that brings us on to the second way of cleansing your data. Using delivery reports in your Text Marketer account, you can download a complete list of all the mobile numbers that you have sent a message to, including the outcome, (delivered or failed.) A ‘failed’ outcome most commonly indicates that the number is dead and if you tried to ring it you would just get a ‘number cannot be recognised’ message. Once you’ve sorted the delivery report spread sheet by ‘delivered’ or ‘failed’ you will then be able to re-upload your list knowing that all the numbers are live and can receive texts. An average bulk SMS campaign has a failure rate (due to expired or wrong numbers) of about 23%. So by spending a few minutes to clean your bulk SMS list you can make a big dent in the overall costs for future campaigns.

Have you started to look at SMS marketing as a way of increasing business? If you are new to this, you can set up a free bulk SMS account here. There are no setup costs, monthly fees or contracts and your account comes with 10 free text credits so that you can try the service at no cost. We are always available to speak to on the phone, so if you would prefer, please call us on (0117) 205 0202.


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