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What You Need to Know About 10DLC & How It Affects Your SMS Marketing

As businesses navigate the SMS marketing landscape in the United States, it’s critical to stay in the know regarding any fees associated with running your campaigns. These include recent 10DLC (10-Digit Long Code) messaging regulations released by The Campaign Registry (TCR), introduced for both transactional and promotional purposes.

This new set of guidelines aims to enhance consumer trust, bolster messaging volume, and mitigate spam texting in the burgeoning A2P (Application-to-Person) messaging space. Today, we’re going to break down everything you need to know about new 10DLC A2P message fees, helping your SMS marketing efforts stay active and effective.

Why Should I Care About TCR?

At first glance, you might wonder, “Why bother with following TCR rules, anyway?” But registering with TCR is widely considered good for doing business in the SMS marketing space. Since TCR was built for the sole purpose of reducing spam and fraud, it generates trust and security in the eyes of your customers; they put their confidence in you that you aren’t spamming them.

Beyond that, TCR-approved messages are far less likely to be flagged or blocked by carriers, improving deliverability and throughput. TCR registration further ensures that you avoid extraneous penalties for compliance issues. Failure to register could result in a ban, being flagged by carriers, or even fined up to $10 per message.

High-Level Changes

The first and arguably biggest change brought upon by recent 10DLC regulations is registration: Businesses must now register their long codes with The Campaign Registry (TCR). This process is meant to occur on or before July 5, 2023, and failure to register now may result in future messaging disruptions. That’s why it’s vital to prioritize registration before building out your messaging strategy.

At a more granular level, there are three types of fees outlined in the A2P 10DLC SMS regulations:

  • Registration fees
  • Campaign fees
  • Optional vetting charges

Let’s explore each one to better understand what these changes mean for your business.

One-Time Registration Fees

As a fee to conduct business in the SMS arena, businesses are required to pay a one-time brand registration fee of $4 upon signing up. This fee reinforces your brand’s authority and legitimacy in deploying SMS campaigns and is vital in finding success in the messaging ecosystem.

To register, you’ll need to select an SMS provider, such as Twilio or Telnyx. Each platform comes with its own set of benefits and drawbacks, so evaluate your options carefully to ensure the best fit; consider pricing, features, and scalability when making your decision.

Ongoing Campaign Fees

Next, we have campaign fees that are categorized into two broad use cases, standard and special, depending on your campaign’s unique purpose. This campaign registration fee ranges anywhere between $1.50 to $10 per month, depending on the volume of your SMS campaign and the nature of your business.

Standard use cases cover a broad range of messaging initiatives, from pure marketing efforts to customer care and authentication; all of these demand the full $10 per month. Special use cases, however, typically only call for $3-$5 per month; these include non-profits, charities, and emergency services.

Optional Vetting Charges

Finally, the A2P regulations also mention an optional vetting fee that businesses may volunteer to pay. While this is certainly not mandatory, opting to undergo the vetting process could prove highly useful. By paying a $40 vetting fee, you can receive higher daily limits to maximize message throughput. This step can significantly improve your SMS campaign’s effectiveness by removing the bottleneck and expanding your A2P messaging reach.

Do I Have to Register?

There are a few unique cases in which brands are not required to register with the TCR or follow 10DLC guidelines. First, if you’re sending messages exclusively outside of the United States, then you’re immune to these regulations. Further, if you’re using toll-free numbers or exclusively shortcodes, you also do not need to register with TCR.

However, keep in mind that these types of numbers still have their own approval processes that could take much longer than TCR. All other A2P messaging use cases must be registered with the TCR.

Final Thoughts

That’s the rundown on recent 10DLC A2P regulations put out by TCR. From registration fees to campaigning and vetting, your business is now.

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