Home Office Texting Training
The Solicitation process through Home Office has undergone changes, now to access the mailing page you must go to the “Solicitation” tab at the top. Only users with specific Solicitation privileges will see the tab.
If you feel as though you should have access to this tab contact your Home Office and have them email us.
Above the currently used templates you will see “Current Templates” (Edit Templates)
Click on Edit Templates
Within this page there are two major sections:
Section 1 Solicitation Templates – Section 2 Opt in messages
Text Templates is where you will set up your regular messages for texting Mass Solicit, FB Solicit, Opt In Code Delivery and the Welcome Message.
As you can see it also includes the placeholders for message creation just below the form field and the template type selection is a drop down so you can create any one of the four current message types:
Lets go over the placeholders and then we can discuss meaningful message creation and function.
company_name : Company name as entered in Config -> Company Info in LP3
company_phone : Company Phone # as entered in Config -> Company Info in LP3
amount_available : What amount the client has available if they renew/re-open according to LP3
branch_name : Branch name as entered in Config -> Company Info
customer_first_name : First name of client being solicited from LP3 Customer Record
customer_last_name : Last name of client being solicited from LP3 Customer Record
These place holders of course will display the simulated values in your messages.
Now that we have covered placeholders creating a new template is pretty straight forward, let’s look at the default template and how its used:
As you can see here we have added an additional Welcome message
The First message reads: Thank you for choosing company_name! You have opted in! If you have any questions please call us at company_phone. Reply STOP to opt-out
The Second message reads: Thank you from company_name! You are opted in! Any questions/concerns please contact us at company_phone. Reply STOP to opt-out
Essentially the same message with some wording changes, this will ensure your text messages are able to deliver to as wide of an audience as possible as sending the same message over and over to the same people and a large group of clients could cause your number to get flagged as spam or blacklisted, so we have built in the ability to use more than one message in a message type, you can see to the right of the templates there is a ‘Usage’ counter this is to help keep an eye on message usage, in this case with two welcome messages the first message ever created would be the first used, and then it would have 1 use on its uses so the next welcome message that goes out will use the template with 0 uses as our system operates on a ‘least used’ system at the moment, so whatever the template is with the least uses will be the one sent out and this is on a per message basis, if you send mass it’s not going to all use the same message, each client in messages will iterate to the next ‘least used’ message. This is why it’s a great idea to front load several variations when you start using the program.
At the right of each template is a “Disable” button so that you are able to shut off messages that have been used excessively or turn off messages you have created only as “Seasonal” items (I.E. Merry Loansmas, Spooky Good Interest rates)
Mass Solicit and FB Solicit function exactly the same as we have covered with the Welcome message. Their defaults are as follows:
Mass Solicit: Want a little extra cash? Renew with company_name and get amount_available. Call our office today at company_phone Reply STOP to opt-out
FB Solicit: Do you want some extra cash? Reopen your loan at company_name and receive amount_available. Call our office today at company_phone Reply STOP to opt-out
Opt In / Out^
Opt In Methods
LoanPlus3 Currently supports 3 methods for opting into text messaging, you can find the configuration setting for this under Config -> Misc Info -> Other
Contractual Opt In
Whenever a client renews, or a new loan is made as long as a good mobile number is collected the customer will be opted in at the completion of the loan documents.
Manual Opt In
You can pull up any customer record and click on the ‘Optin’ button next to the mobile number
A message opting the customer in will be sent out immediately.
If you have not collected a mobile number the ‘Optin’ button will be grayed out and inaccessible.
Code Opt In
Like manually opting in, you go to the customer record and click the ‘Optin’ button next to the mobile number
and then the system will send a message with a code to the customer’s phone
(The contents of this message are editable in HomeOffice)
and bring up a prompt on LoanPlus3 to input the aforementioned code
If you have entered the code correctly into the system the customer Opt in status will be moved to Opted In
and the customer will then receive the welcome message.
If you enter the code improperly the system will alert you to this fact and move the client Opt In status back to Eligible
The Only accepted opt out method at the moment is initiated by the end client replying STOP to any of the text message, remediated by the client sending START to the same number that they sent the original STOP to.
Here is the general overview of the page you will see beyond clicking the solicitation tab and we will break it down into four sections for further explanation:
Section 1 Which stores are you soliciting to.
Section 2 What templates are available for solicitation.
Section 3 Scheduling the solicitation process.
Section 4 Manually processing solicitation.
Section 1 which stores are you soliciting to? ^
When you first enter the solicitation page no Regions / Divisions / Branches no selection will be highlighted by default. From here you can either solicit an entire Region(s) and/or entire Divisions and/or one or multiple branches you can select a region AND a Division AND some branches. For instance if you need to message all of Oklahoma and then just the corresponding North Texas region it might like something like this:
Which would send messages to all Oklahoma region branches and also North Texas region branches.
Alternatively you can just select one element from one category or multiple elements from the same category as seen demonstrated with Divisions here:
Single Division Selected
Multiple Divisions Selected
And then as an example to Division selection of Branches selection you can select multiple branches, divisions, regions by holding control and clicking on the additional stores, by that same method if you have a store or region you did not mean to add you can remove it singly by holding control and clicking it again to deselect in this example from the image above I mistakenly started with “North Texas” on my Oklahoma texts so I hold control and click “North Texas” and the result is only the Oklahoma divisions remain selected (additionally you can refresh the page to reset your selections to blank if individually seems too numerous):
Section 2 What templates are available for solicitation? ^
In section two of the overall image we see only the available Templates that pertain to Solicitation (by which I mean you will not see the Welcome message or the Opt In Code Delivery in this list though they do still exist on the templates screen) and the current use count on that particular template, if your use count is ranging into the high thousands it’s a good time to get in contact with your template management person and get these updated, the more deliveries of the same exact message the less effective that message becomes as over time the carriers will start flagging it as spam.
Anyone with that level of access will see “Edit Templates” above the templates displayed on screen and clicking that link will take you to the templates page. (where it has always been and is still accessible from: Reports > Text Messages > Templates)
Section 3 Scheduling the Solicitation Process ^
Scheduled texting uses Monthly, Bi-Weekly, and Weekly timelines to accomplish this goal. The only functional change is that there has been an extra field added to enable mass/fb scheduled texting above each respective area.
What time does Scheduled Texting go out ? Will start to queue at 9am CST, will start going out at 10am CST.
What branches does the scheduled texting run for? All the branches within your organization.
Monthly: Day of Month
Weekly/Bi-Weekly: Day of Week
Section 4 Manually Processing Solicitation ^
In the top of section 4 of the overview image you have the control over the parameters you can set to determine who should be getting a text message based on their FB Date or proceeds available, you can even restrict Mass Solicit to currents only.
The Default view does not have anything selected
You can select just one Solicitation type or both:
Whatever parameters are selected and input will be run when the user clicks “Process Solicitation”
Recent updates have added the ability to leave the queue page once the solicitation process has been started, instead of having to wait on the page itself you will now see an indication at the top of the page letting you know solicitation is running and giving you a link directly to it as seen here:
While the solicitation is running if you click on the link “here” as seen above it will take you to the Past Solicitation Menu where you can see your active solicitation queuing up which looks like this:
Once the solicitation has completed queue for your branches it will change from Queued to Processing and then once the text messages are finished sending out it will change to Processed and list your stores and their number of messages sent out of potential customers to send to as seen below:
FAQ and Good Information^
How can I see solicitation history?
Inside of the Solicitation menu you will see the title below click on (View Past Solicitations) in parentheses and the solicitation history will present on screen.
Enforcing rules or regulations about what types of messaging are allowed to that country or mobile network
Depending on the country, laws or regulations may put restrictions on certain types of messaging, or even forbid certain things altogether.
For example: In the U.S. and Canada, application-to-person (A2P) type messaging is generally not allowed to be sent using local 10-digit long code phone numbers. A2P traffic is supposed to be sent using short codes, and may be subject to filtering when sent via long code.
Protecting mobile subscribers from unwanted messaging such as spam, fraud, or abuse
When mobile subscribers receive messages they find objectionable, they may file complaints, seek damages, or simply stop being a customer. All of these things reduce revenue or increase costs for carriers. Thus, it is in the best interest of carriers to protect mobile subscribers from what they consider to be objectionable content.
How do Wireless Carriers Filter Messages?
There is no standard practice for carrier filtering across all carriers. Filtering can range from a simple static list of prohibited terms, to advanced machine learning systems that constantly adapt based on the messages passing through them. Regardless of the system, carriers keep their filtering systems closely guarded secrets. Due to the ambiguous nature of these filtering mechanisms, our provider is unable to say definitively how these systems work, or why a particular message was filtered.
How do I Know if my Messages are Being Filtered?
Our provider can’t predict filtering, and does not always know for certain when a message has been filtered by a carrier. Some carriers may falsely report filtered messages as delivered to prevent spammers from reverse engineering filtering systems. In other cases, carriers will tell our provider that a particular message has been filtered. The error code we will use when we know that carrier filtering has taken place is Error 30007: Message Delivery – Carrier Violation.
If our provider knows that a message has been filtered, we will pass this information to you in two ways:
By updating the message status to Undelivered, and flagging error code 30007 in your Programmable SMS Logs. This is when you will see the “Undelivered” status in LP3 and Home Office texting logs.
Carriers in the U.S. and Canada appear to be using adaptive (machine learning) software systems to protect their users. These systems look at both message content and volume, and behave very much like email filtering systems. Messages receive a cumulative score based on how many messages have come from a phone number during a certain time period, how many similar messages have transited the carrier’s network, or if the message contains content that makes it a high match for spam or A2P. Time periods are measured by the second, minute, hour and day.
Carriers in the U.S. and Canada usually report to our provider when a message has been filtered. If you suddenly see that a large number of your messages are resulting in a status of Undelivered, the carrier’s filtering system has probably recently identified a pattern in your messages that triggered a block.
Q: I think my texting number or message contents may have been blocked by a carrier. Can I get the block removed?
A: No. Our provider is unable to request any unblocking of phone numbers or message bodies due to filtering, unless the messaging in question is true Person-to-Person (P2P) messaging and the block was in error (this is uncommon).
Most carrier block lists in the U.S. and Canada for numbers use a “cooling off” period, which means that the numbers will automatically be removed from the blacklist after a period of time. The time period may vary, and carriers do not share this information with our provider. If your message bodies do not also change, carriers’ content filtering systems will continue blocking your messages.
Q: Can I get my messages whitelisted or pre-approved by carriers?
A: U.S. and Canada carriers do not whitelist messages from long code numbers. Short code numbers, on the other hand, are whitelisted for a particular type of pre-approved traffic. If you are sending many messages with identical content to a large number of users, you are at high risk of having your messages filtered by carriers when using long codes, and should consider a short code.
You can also greatly reduce the risk of filtering by following these best practices:
Provide a good user experience:
Users are likely to report confusing or unwanted messages to their carrier. When these messages are reported to carriers, it becomes very likely that future messages from the same number (or those with similar contents) will be filtered. In some cases, the user may have forgotten that they requested the message, so be sure to identify your business or service in the message. Also, how the message is formatted and written is important. Overly long messages, overly capitalized messages, mysterious links, hyperbole, and using aggressive language can make users suspicious of a message.
Provide clear opt-out instructions:
If users do not understand how to opt out (unsubscribe) from your messages, they may feel they have no choice but to contact their carrier to request the carrier block your messages.
For A2P traffic, send via a short code or pre-registered Alpha Sender ID:
If you are sending application-to-person (A2P) traffic, the carriers in the country you are sending to may require that this traffic be sent from a short code or from a pre-registered Alphanumeric Sender ID, if available. These are both ways that carriers can review your messaging use case in advance, and offer better delivery as a result.
Last revised 6/26/2020