SMS Keywords & Short Codes

At the heart of any SMS marketing campaign is the SMS keyword and short code. Derek Johnson, CEO of Tatango discusses these two different parts of SMS marketing and how they function together.


Video Transcription

Hey guys, Derek Johnson with Today we’re going to be talking about keywords and short codes. Some people get confused about which is which and why they’re even around. I’ll give you a little one-on-one introduction to both of these.

As you can see from this campaign right here, “Text CUPCAKE to 33733″ let me explain which is the short code and which is the keyword. The first one is the keyword, this one right here. “Text CUPCAKE to 33733″. “CUPCAKE” is what we call the keyword. The short code is this one right here. Usually, it’s a five to six digit phone number that can be typed into the mobile phone. Somebody will grab their mobile phone and they would text, in the body of the text message, the keyword “CUPCAKE” to the phone number, or short code, “33733.”

Let me explain some of the nuances between a short code and a keyword. “33733″ is the short code for Tatango. That is across all different campaigns that we run off our SMS platform will always have the same 33733 short code. Each other SMS platform will have their own short code, again five to six characters. Now, every single campaign on Tatango will have a unique keyword. So that means “CUPCAKE” only can be used by one business. Five businesses in your town can’t have the word “CUPCAKE” because then we wouldn’t know which campaign your subscribers were trying to join.

Again, these are unique. These are not. These are unique, actually, to the SMS provider, but not the customer. Again, keyword is “CUPCAKE.” Short code is the five to six digit phone number that your customers will text in the keyword to.

Hopefully this helps to explain the difference between keyword and short code, and get you guys started on your SMS campaign.

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