Monday, September 2, 2013

Sending an SMS Message to a Contact

BitFaster can be used to send out SMS campaigns as well. And yes, you can personalize them too!

Before you can send out an SMS campaign, make sure you have bought SMS credits from a service provider. Any SMS Gateway that supports HTTP/S API will work with BitFaster. Your service provider can give you more information on how to use this API to send out messages.

You will normally get a URL from your service provider which can be used to send out a message once you input a couple of parameters (as a query string). Check out the example below:

Two parameters are mandatory to sending an SMS. You may have other parameters that your service provider might need. Please refer to their guide or tutorial on what all parameters are required.

In the above example, you will notice that there are two parameters to be sent – msg and no. The first one is for the message you want to send and the second is to the mobile number you wish to send the message to.

Assuming that we are done with the above two parameters only, you can now add a new SMS Gateway in BitFaster. The steps to do that are:

  • Choose File > New > SMS Gateway from the main menu
  • Enter the Gateway Name (this is for your reference only)
  • Enter the URL text (as shown above or as suggested by your service provider)
  • Make sure that the URL text uses the system variables [MobileNo] and [SMSMessage] when you pass the query string. The URL text could look something like this:[SMSMessage]&no=[MobileNo]

Please note that all BitFaster system variables are enclosed in square brackets and are case sensitive.

Once you have added an SMS Gateway, you can use it to send out an SMS campaign or a single SMS to the selected contact. To send an SMS to a single contact, follow the steps below:

  • Click on a Group name in the tree view under the Main tab
  • Now right click on a Contact Name in the top right window pane and choose Compose SMS

The mobile number of the contact is automatically shown in the Mobile No. field. Now enter the message you wish to send in the SMS Message text box
Select the SMS Gateway you want to use and click on Send

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