What Is TrueDialog?
TrueDialog is a market-leading SMS texting platform designed for both large and small businesses. TrueDialog offers powerful features including mass texting, landline texting, urgent alerts, scheduling, and more. Its cloud-based, ISO 9001-certified technology offers the flexibility, affordability, and scalability required for enterprise-level clients. TrueDialog integrates with several applications, including CRM software and social messaging apps, to further enhance the efficiency and performance of the communication. By building direct connections with carriers, TrueDialog eliminates the need for third-party service providers and minimizes points of vulnerability to a 99.9 percent uptime.
What Is TCPA?
The TCPA (Telephone Consumer Protection Act) protects consumers from spam telecommunications. The legislation initially set out to minimize unsolicited telemarketing from ATDS (automated telephone dialing system). In 2003, automated text messages were added to the TCPA’s restriction list.
By enforcing requirements and setting standards to minimize telecommunications abuse, TCPA has protected the privacy of consumers. In the absence of such regulation, spam messaging may have grown to the point that consumers ignore or block most SMS messages.
Why Is TCPA Compliance Important?
Text messaging remains a highly effective means to engage customers, but TCPA violations can range from $500 to $1,500 per call or message and disrupt the operations of the business.
TCPA requires businesses to follow three fundamental guidelines. First, the business should obtain written consent from recipients before sending out any automated telemarketing or messaging. Second, businesses should provide complete disclosure to customers once they opt in to receive SMS communication. Lastly, businesses must provide a simple and clear process for customers to opt out of SMS communication if they want to.
TCPA Compliance for Different Message Categories
TCPA outlines different requirements for various categories of messaging. Your business might be using one or more of these categories, so it is important to understand the TCPA requirements for each one.
SMS and Voice Note Marketing
For automated SMS or voice notes that encourage consumers to purchase a certain item or service, the TCPA requires prior written consent from the recipients. The written consent can be acquired through online forms, email, physical forms, and a few other channels. The written consent must be conspicuous and plain so that the customers can easily understand what is being asked from them. The default assumption is that customers do not want to receive this type of SMS messages. For more detail on written consent, visit the website of TCPA.
SMS Notifications for Emergencies
For automated messages that have an impact on the health and safety of customers, no prior consent is required. The purpose of this category of messaging must not be commercial. Typical examples of such messages include warnings to residents about hazardous weather, road closures, power outages, or other emergency purposes.
Informational SMS and Voice Calls
This category of SMS messaging pertains to informational messages based on an existing transaction with the customer. That means that the scope of these types of messages falls within an existing relationship with a customer. A typical example of such messages is a shipment notification for a purchased item. According to TCPA regulations, this category of messages requires prior written consent. This type of written consent is mostly acquired at the time of transaction or purchase in the form of a phone number provided by the customer. The general assumption is that customers do want to receive these types of messages.
Hybrid SMS could be a combination of emergency notification or informational SMS. For these messages, prior written consent from the customer is mandatory under the rules and regulations of TCPA.
How TrueDialog Can Help in Compliance with TCPA
As a business, you can take a number of actions to prevent violations of TCPA and protect your business from litigation. Ideally, your business needs a reliable and reputed messaging platform that understands TCPA messaging compliance. Trying to manage compliance through manual paperwork can be risky and inefficient.
One of the first things that you need to do is keep records of text opt-ins and opt-outs. According to TrueDialog CEO John Wright, the best defense against any type of lawsuit is keeping detailed records. Saving your database on reputable cloud servers is the most secure way to store data. For example, Microsoft Azure cloud servers offer comprehensive security and data recovery features.
The architectural base of TrueDialog was designed to help businesses comply with TCPA. With TrueDialog, you can easily maintain records of opt-ins and opt-outs. The SMSafe Dual Cloud Database feature of TrueDialog is a duplicate record kept as an additional layer of protection against accidentally sending out a message to a customer that has opted-out. The duplicate database is maintained by TrueDialog.
TrueDialog can be integrated with several applications using its SMS API. This integration helps with transferring of contact lists, automatic syncing of CRM information, and more. TrueDialog can integrate with Microsoft Dynamics, Oracle’s Eloqua, Salesforce, and other major CRMs. Another key feature of TrueDialog is that you can control who can send text messages. Through different authorization levels, only selected individuals can send text messages, minimizing the chance of sending an SMS to unsubscribed customers. To learn more about how TrueDialog can help with TCPA compliance, request a free demo or start a free trial of the software.