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Text message marketing campaigns can be incredibly effective when done correctly and in compliance with the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). As a result, we’ve put together a brief overview so you stay compliant and making effective use of this platform.

Explicit Consent Must Be Given

This is absolutely key to make sure your company is compliant with TCPA. Individuals in your text message marketing database must give their explicit consent and be absolutely certain that they did so. This is usually achieved by texting in a keyword or submitting a form (digital or hard copy). In addition, you can not bury this in paperwork or in a long user agreement form. The user has to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that they signed up to receive text messages from your business.


Once your user has given their consent, they should receive a confirmation message that confirms they’ve explicitly opted in to your text message marketing program and include the information below.

  • Validate User – Let the user know they successfully opted in to your text message marketing program.
  • State Business Name – Clearly state the name of your business to the user letting them know they signed up to receive text messages from your company.
  • Offer Opt-Out Language – This is important. Include a specific keyword so a user can stop receiving text messages from your business. This is usually accomplished with a, “Text STOP to stop” message.
  • Provide Help Language – Confusion sometimes occurs on the receiving end of your text messages and this is fine but you need to offer a way for them to receive assistance. Letting them use the keyword “HELP” will address any problems as long as you provide them additional ways to contact your business like with a phone number or email address.
  • Indicate Message Frequency – Set expectations early and soon in terms of how often you plan on sending messages to users and in what timeframe in expecting to receive them. This will also set them up to expect and look forward to your text messages.
  • Be Clear About Data & Message Rates – Since these are your potential or current customers, it is important you don’t anger them by discovering unexpected surprises like data or text overage charges on their phone bill because of their participation in your text message marketing program. Even though unlimited text messages plans are common, not everyone has one.

Important Organizations To Note

  • Wireless Carrier – These are the telecommunication companies that actually send and deliver text messages.
  • Neustar – The company in the U.S. that creates and manages all 5 or 6 digit phone numbers.
  • CTIA – The Cellular Telephone Industries Association (CTIA) represents the wireless communications industry in the U.S.
  • FCC – The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) enforces federal laws including TCPA.
  • MMA – The Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) is a trade organization that represents mobile marketers and publishes best practices.