txtNation recently attended the Wholesale World Congress which took place in Madrid on 3rd – 4th September.

The Wholesale World Congress (WWC) is one of the main events in the Wholesale SMS community’s calendar and offers a great opportunity to meet new and existing clients. It is an event for the entire industry with participants from all areas of the wholesale telecom industry including voice and SMS.

As txtNation enter the wholesale space for Bulk A2P SMS traffic it made perfect sense for txtNation to attend and meet service providers and develop new relationships. As a result of attending the show we have already converted a number of opportunities and work further to open up our extensive reach list for Global SMS termination.

Paul Adams, Head of Messaging at txtNation commented “A well organised event in a great central location, giving the opportunity to meet with new clients and spend some downtime with existing clients.”

txtNation is soon launching enhanced features to its Mobile Number Lookup service, providing more precise Mobile Number Portability (MNP) information and more in-depth lookup queries and outputs.

The MNP market is constantly moving so keeping up with this is no easy task. Over 2.3 billion numbers worldwide now have the potential to be ported and with India and China implementing soon, this figure could grow by another 50%.

txtNation is releasing these new MNP services with several new routes being added to cater for the growing demand and changeability in local network porting. This includes multiple routing options per destination to enable far greater testing for clients.

Improvements to txtNation’s HLR
The heavily updated HLR options from txtNation includes more data sources, including localised data checking to provide the best possible information available in real-time. This latest release also includes updated coverage into more networks globally, with pinpoint accuracy.

This news comes as txtNation grows its messaging services and a recent release of messaging into MytxtNation. On top of these features is the ability to select multiple routes per market on request, giving more customisation and testing options.

Using txtNation Advanced HLR for successful Number Portability Checking
For many years, txtNation has provided a high quality, real time number lookup service to clients all over the world. The approved real time lookup service is the most effective solution to access the information you need. txtNation’s global number look-up service has recently been upgraded to provide access to accurate information, even faster than before.

2 Main Options
txtNation extends Number Portability Lookup, and Real Time Lookup (RTLU)

  • Number Portability Lookup: mix of MNP databases and HLR sources. Data is cached for 10 days. No option to set “nocache” parameter.
  • Real-Time Lookup: direct MNO connections only and all information is from live HLR lookups. On this service you have the possibility to set the “no cache” parameter if you do not wish to receive cached results. This service enables customers to further customize network information, tailoring the response further.
Feature Output HLR Lookup Real Time Look Up
Database scrub Error notification Yes Yes
MNP status, Billing & Routing  MCC + MNC Yes Yes
Location Country, Roaming flag No Yes
Subscriber Information Output No Yes
Subscriber Information Portability flag No Yes
Original network status Number range identity No Yes

These will be able to be run through both txtNation’s API or through the on-line MyHLR web platform.

txtNation’s COO, Ashley Cross, commented “The latest HLR updates are a direct result of the requirements of several of our clients’ expansion with Number Lookup. Localised Number Lookup and our experience in bringing HLR to service providers over many years has made us a trusted provider. Our worldwide tier-one, network quality platform, gives our clients access to high quality, local results.”

The enhanced number look up service will be available later this month. Existing clients who wish to access number look-up services will need to contact their Account Manager about getting the right credit.

If you would like to discuss ways in which your business can benefit from txtNation’s HLR and MNP solutions, please contact us quoting “HLR new route.” Read more on our HLR Lookup options.

Developers, jump straight in - see our HLR API.

Following the successful launch of MytxtNation in December 2013, we have released further updates to our platform as part of our Beta program.

If you log in to MytxtNation from today you will see three new sections: ‘Billing’, ‘Messaging’ and ‘APIs’. This provides dedicated areas covering reporting of bulk messaging and mobile billing as well as configuration for our Gateway APIs.

billing-messaging-drop-down

‘Billing’ contains the latest balance and financial overviews for mobile billing, just like the previous ‘Balance’ section, as well as graphs and interactive tables. ‘Messaging’ provides an interactive table of the latest bulk SMS activity. This provides more tailored sections depending on whether the client is a billing or a bulk customer.

messaging2For our SMPP-based services, activity for bulk messaging over that protocol now appears in MytxtNation for the first time. This was a feature missing even from our former Control Panel (CP5) and MytxtNation goes some way to filling this gap.

For the first time, it also includes our Gateway module, taken from our old CP5, and given a much-needed polish. It should now be more pleasant to set up or reconfigure your HTTP Gateway campaigns. We also have more improvements for Gateway to come in 2014.

APIs

Over the coming months, we will be phasing out CP5, for all statistics, accounting and Gateway services, bringing MytxtNation more front-and-centre as the future hub for all client services.

graph-cp-screenshotSMS is an extremely powerful communication tool, allowing you to reach customers directly, quickly and cost-effectively. When running a campaign, either to current customers or to potential customers, by setting out KPIs and making sure you can measure them, you are more likely to be able to achieve success.

The following delivery metrics will help you to improve your campaigns going forward:

  • General Delivery Reports: How many of your SMS messages reached their destination? If you know this information, you can then establish whether your data is clean enough, or whether it needs an HLR lookup to cut out inactive numbers. It also adds a lot of context to open rates and response rates. This report can be seen in our MytxtNation control panel.
  • Delivery Rates by Country: By measuring delivery rates by country, you can find out in which of your markets your messaging is more successful in terms of active numbers. With this information, you can dig deeper into your data collection methods in certain countries. This information can also be seen in our MytxtNation control panel
    .
  • Click through Rates: By tagging links or using specific short links for your SMS campaigns, you can track visitors from SMS message to conversion through Google Analytics.

In order for you to get the most out of your SMS campaigns, we recently improved our MytxtNation Control Panel, offering you more visibility, in an easy-to-use way.

01. May 2014 · 1 comment · Categories: hlr, Messaging

SMS Messaging

SMS messaging is a cost-effective method of communication, allowing you to reach your customers quickly and easily. We look at four ways to use SMS in various areas of your business and get some valuable input from txtNation’s newly-appointed Head of Messaging, Paul Adams.

1. Verification to Stop Fake Accounts

Fake accounts created by spammers have caused many headaches for online communities, dating sites and social media sites. These accounts can cause customers to lose faith in the service, damaging the credibility of the business.

SMS can significantly help to cut this issue when users are required to enter their mobile numbers, receive a PIN number and enter it to verify. The mobile number is then tied to the account, so multiple accounts for each number cannot be created.

As more and more of these websites are accessed and joined via mobile, this is a more convenient method of authentication for customers.

Read more about combatting fake accounts with SMS verification.

2. Retention

Customer retention is a lot cheaper than acquisition, and SMS provides a cost-effective method for this. SMS can be used to deliver targeted and time-sensitive offers, updates, value added material and requests for customer feedback.

txtNation’s Head of Messaging, Paul Adams commented “SMS offers much higher open, response and conversion rates than email, and with more and more end-users accessing a wider range of services on their handsets, offering SMS as a form of communication instantly increases convenience and profitability.”

3. Acquisition

With a mobile data list, you can reach new customers, straight to their handsets. We’ve seen many offers successfully used to entice end-users to sign up. The call to action can be a link to a mobile website, instruction to reply by SMS or direction to purchase in a physical shop or visit an event.

Paul Adams adds “When purchasing a data list, higher quality data makes a huge difference. Many providers extract information from census data and match it with corresponding phone numbers. This results in low success rates. Our data lists have accurate and usable data, based on advanced profiling technology. We run an HLR lookup to cleanse it, resulting in far more successful deliveries which has a massive impact on the overall success of the campaign and increases the client ratio from send to buy.”

Read more about mobile messaging for customer acquisition

4. Reactivation

Reactivating lapsed customers can be tricky. Ensuring their return customer journey is simple, easy and efficient is key. Compared to email, SMS is a far more powerful tool for reactivating customers, with SMS response times on average 90 seconds, compared to 90 minutes for email. SMS open rates are over 90% on average, with email open rates generally varying between 20-30%.

To cut costs, an HLR lookup can allow you to see which numbers are inactive, preventing you from wasting time ,money and effort.

Paul adds “SMS offers the opportunity for you to communicate with your customer base via a 2-way means of communication, meaning you as a business can ask for instant responses and build a profile of your customers to use in later and maybe more targeted campaigns. This inevitably improves the overall customer experience, and helps improve reactivation rates and creates a direct relationship with your target audience.”

Read more about our one-way and two-way SMS solutions and contact us to find out more about how your business can benefit from mobile messaging.

txtNation has absorbed Manchester based mobile messaging company, PushMobileMarketing Ltd in a move that sees Paul Adams, PushMobileMarketing Managing Director appointed as Head of Messaging at txtNation.

This comes as part of the award-winning mobile billing and messaging provider’s push to scale up its mobile messaging division.

PushMobileMarketing provides both UK and Global SMS termination through stable and secure quality routing options, offering access to 800+ mobile operators around the world.

As txtNation’s newly appointed Head of Messaging, Paul brings a wealth of experience and a solid reputation to txtNation, allowing the business to offer increased service levels to its already blossoming client base. Previous to PushMobileMarketing, he has had roles across wholesale voice and telecoms.

Michael Whelan, CEO of txtNation commented “The demand for SMS messaging is rising. This combined with our platform, analytics and commercial improvements across our core messaging mix of SMS, HLR and USSD, it’s a very exciting time. We have absorbed PushMobileMarketing and have are delighted to bring Paul on-board, benefiting from his experience and vast industry knowledge.”

Paul Adams, txtNation’s new Head of Messaging commented “After speaking with Michael and spending time at txtNation’s head office, the vision that he and the rest of the business have for messaging made it an easy decision to join the team and help deliver results with the new dedicated bulk SMS division.”

We have worked with a number of businesses in the finance industry who have found SMS messaging to be an extremely effective retention tool. The opportunity for low-cost, regular communication can greatly increase loyalty.

SMS messaging is quick, with open rates generally between 95-98% in the first two minutes. The directness of the communication, straight to the handset of the intended recipient attributes to a low average response time for SMS, at just 90 seconds, with email response times are around 90 minutes. Response rates from mobile messaging campaigns vary between 15 and 30%, making it a highly powerful tool.

By using mobile messaging for your retention and acquisition campaigns, you can save on paper costs, eliminate the need for large collection teams and cut down on the number of inbound calls to your business.

Mobile Messaging for Finance and Banking

 

As an acquisition tool, using a short code for customers to contact is an effective call to action on your advertising. Purchasing a datalist and running outbound SMS marketing campaigns to the contacts can also cost-effectively increase the number of new customers.

Payment reminders, account balance, service updates, overdraft alerts, personalised marketing and transaction confirmations all add value, helping you to retain customers.

By using txtNation’s API for your SMS marketing, you can integrate our solutions with your own software and systems, allowing you to use SMS in as many ways as you see fit for your customers’ needs. Read more about our one-way and two-way SMS solutions and contact us to find out more about how your business can retain and re-activate customers by using mobile messaging.

Preview of SMS Messaging Reporting and Analytics in MytxtNation

Following on from last year’s release of MytxtNation, which incorporates full reporting and accounting for Mobile Billing, we can now announce the addition of SMS messaging with advanced, real-time reporting, due for release in April, 2014.

txtNation provides superior termination, quality pricing, high deliverability, in-depth analytics, easy to understand protocols and full transparency.

graph-cp-screenshotMytxtNation – SMS Messaging reporting features:

  • Simple, easy to use interface
  • Accounting for SMS Messaging
    • Bulk SMS, One – Way SMS
    • Long Codes, Virtual Numbers
  • Unifies all txtNation direct mobile messaging connections, globally
  • Support for HTTP, SMPP reporting
  • Transparency – clear real time messaging reporting
  • Historical data
  • Pending and actual transaction data
  • Clearer, more responsive messaging logs
  • Improved export options for larger results
  • Interactive messaging activity and statistics
  • Instant searching and browsing of key data
  • Improved graphs, charts and information panels
  • Pinch and zoom graphs
  • Optimised for desktop and mobile
  • And much more!

billing-messaging-drop-down

Very soon you will be able to view your Messaging analytics and statistics from inside MytxtNation, by simply logging in and selecting Messaging.

“We are pleased to announce the inclusion of SMS mobile messaging and further updates into our next generation reporting platform, MytxtNation. Our team has worked incredibility hard over the last few years to make this a reality, moving away from our legacy systems and building new software on the cloud.

txtNation provides superior termination, quality pricing, high deliverability, in-depth analytics, easy to understand protocols and full transparency across messaging. MytxtNation as a front-end, showcases these improvements to our clients.”
Michael Whelan, txtNation CEO

gateway-add-countries-cpMytxtNation features coming soon:

  • Mobile Gateway configuration
    • Support for Mobile Billing and Messaging config and set up.

These are due to go live in April 2014.

We are not stopping there! We also aim to add our full messaging mix into MytxtNation throughout the course of this year, including:

  • Unifying our USSD Statistics, across Flash and Menu based USSD.
  • Adding our HLR Reporting, across MNP, RTLU.

 

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Mobile Messaging for Re-Activation

Whether you operate on mobile already or not, mobile messaging is a powerful tool for re-activating and retaining customers, which, as is commonly known, is cheaper than acquiring new customers. Your business may be missing out on money due to a lack of customer loyalty. In this blog post, we look at ways in which SMS can be a solution.

We have seen businesses in many industries use mobile messaging to engage their customers, including dating and social, iGaming, finance and banking, television and many more. More and more are seeing the benefit of SMS over other forms of communication, due to the high open and response rates, quickness and cost-effectiveness.

When comparing SMS to email as a retention tool, it is clear to see that SMS is more effective. SMS response times are on average 90 seconds, whereas the average response time for email is 90 minutes. SMS open rates are over 90% on average, with email open rates generally varying between 20-30%.

Call centres and post have also been used to retain and re-activate customers, however the costs associated with these methods are extremely high compared to SMS. Post and telephone calls can often be less private than desired, which can effect customer satisfaction. Mobile messaging is direct and private, alerting only the owner of the mobile that it is intended for.

HLR lookups can cut the costs even more, by allowing you to see which numbers are inactive, so when planning a campaign to contact lapsed customers, you don’t waste money and time. Clearing out inactive entries from a data list can be time consuming and not always possible when done with postal, email or telephone communication.

SMS can offer a 2-way stream, which is useful for fast and simple feedback. You can ask your customers for a response if they would like to hear more, or conduct valuable customer research, cheaply and easily.

We have seen businesses use mobile messaging for confirmations, updates and offers, all of which improve the customer journey.

By using txtNation’s API for your SMS marketing, you can integrate with your own software and systems, allowing you to use SMS in as many ways as you see fit for your customers’ needs. Read more about our one-way and two-way SMS solutions and contact us to find out more about how your business can retain and re-activate customers by using mobile messaging.