Purchase and manage your own phone numbers for one-way or two-way communication. Fans can receive messages from a recognizable number and may also respond directly to your messages.
You will need a License (free or paid) to purchase phone numbers for your account. Each number is uniquely yours with pricing starting at $2.00 / month.
All numbers can be used to send one-way SMS to other countries, with the exception of the United States which can only receive SMS from US and Canada numbers. To be clear, you must purchase a US phone number to message US phone numbers.
Purchase a phone number
With Encore, you can purchase phone numbers from a variety of different countries. Every phone number purchased for a team is pooled together in to a "messaging service", which will be used to intelligently attempt to send messages from numbers that match the geo-location of the recipient. For example, a US number will send messages to US recipients while a German number would send to German recipients.
What happens if I don't own a number for a specific country that a recipient resides in?
When sending an SMS, Encore will search for a number that you own in your "messaging service" that matches the recipients country, if one does not exist, Encore will choose a fallback number in your "messaging service" to send the text. We suggest analyzing your Encore campaign analytics to better understand where your fans are located and purchase phone numbers in those regions for optimal deliverability.
To find the purchase page:
- Click on the Teams tab in your account sidebar
- Select the Team you want to purchase a number for
- Select the Phones option from the list
- Click the Purchase button to be sent to the phone number search page
From the purchase page, you can filter for a country an area code and find numbers that contain a specific sequence of numbers.
Selecting a number type
You can choose between several different number types on Encore, each have their own pro's and con's as described below:
- Local: Local numbers are telephone numbers which are assigned to a specific geographic region.
- Toll-free: Toll free numbers are telephone numbers that are free of charge for the calling party, and are typically used by businesses when they prefer fully take on the cost of calls for their users.
- National: National numbers are telephone numbers which are not region-specific, and were designed to be reachable from an entire country at the same cost.
- Mobile: In most countries, mobile numbers are assigned to a particular range within the country’s telephone numbering plan so they can be easily distinguished from local numbers.
For in-depth information on each number type and their limitations click here.
Each country has its own rules and regulations for using a phone number from that country. You may need to submit a regulatory compliance bundle that includes information such as: business name, full name, and address before you can purchase a number from that country. For more information about regulatory compliance, click here.
You may be able to conduct two-way SMS when using a number from a different country than your recipients, however this is not guaranteed. As a best practice, always use a number from the same country as your recipients, where available. For example, we suggest using a UK number for 2-way messaging with UK recipients.
Why can't international (cross-border) 2-way SMS always be guaranteed?
In some countries, carriers may change your sender ID for recipients to comply with local rules or to help ensure successful delivery. Please see the SMS Guidelines site to review what’s possible in countries you’re sending to and from.
The cost to send a message varies greatly depending on which country the message is sent to. For example, it only costs $0.01 to send a message to recipients in the US, but $0.11 to the Netherlands. After geo-restricting your phone number, only recipients in those countries will see an option to join a waitlist / contact list by text. For example, as a fan in the US registering for a text waitlist notification, they'd see the option to join by text, but if they were a fan from Canada, that option would be hidden on their browser. This helps you manage your budget and also target certain geographic markets.
Automated text triggers
You can set up automated text responses that will trigger based on the content of the message. For example, you can define a trigger to respond with a list of social links if a user texts your number with the keyword: !socials. Here's a breakdown of what each field represents:
Keyword: The trigger word / phrase that Encore should listen for (!socials / #about / music)
Frequency: You can decide to run this trigger the first time a user messages you (useful for a welcome message) or on every message that matches the keyword
Match: Determines how a keyword is matched when a message is sent to your number. Each example below will use a keyword called "music"
- Exact: The user's message must exactly match your keyword. For example, if a user sends a message containing exactly "music", it will match.
- Includes: The user's message can contain other characters and still match. For example, if a user sends a message containing "your music", it will match.
- Any: The user's message can contain any character (without reference to your keyword at all). For example, if a user sends a message containing "songs", it will match. This is like a catch-all match... use at your own risk!
Message: This is the content that will be sent back to the user. Line breaks and links are respected.