What is SMS consent? Why is it important?
There are stricter requirements on what SMS consent means because it is more regulated than other marketing channels such as email:
- SMS consent must be received from new subscribers and those that already agreed to receive your content via email.
- Please note that consent cannot be forced or made to look as required, which might result in fines or compliance issues.
- New subscribers can provide both email and SMS consent in the same form, you simply must use a separate opt-in button or check-box for SMS.
- Make sure to use disclosure language whenever you collect SMS consent, whether that is at the checkout, form or an email campaign.
Consent for SMS Marketing in the EU
GDPR compliant consent forms must include:
- The type of data being collected, in this case, phone number.
- How data will be used – what the subscriber will be opting-in for.
- How to easily opt out from receiving marketing SMS.
Consent for SMS Marketing in the USA
- Marketing SMS must include the identity of the sending business and contact information, including the number used to send the SMS.
- Marketers cannot send marketing messages to consumers before 8 am or after 9 pm local time without their express consent.
- You cannot send someone a marketing SMS without their express consent, even if you already have their contact details. Consent must be obtained separately for each contact method.
- Consent is not considered valid if the subscriber has not received a clear explanation of what kind of messages they agree to receive and their frequency.
- All marketing SMS must be clearly identified as advertising.
- Every marketing SMS must contain clear instructions on how to stop receiving future SMS.
Make sure that you abide by the set regulations in the EU and the USA, and give the subscribers an option to unsubscribe whenever they want by inserting an unsubscribe link in your SMS campaigns. More on that here.
How to collect SMS consent?
There are several ways to collect SMS consent, and you should use at least one once you start SMS marketing. Others can be left for later or used only sporadically.
Pop-up and embedded forms
Using embedded or pop-up forms is a great way to collect email and SMS consent. It makes it easy for your website visitors to sign up, no matter if they are new or existing subscribers. More on creating subscription forms here.
You can also collect SMS consent via your ecommerce store by placing a checkbox at the checkout. It is the smoothest way for your customers to sign up. Check out Sender’s integrations with several ecommerce websites for more information:
If you already have a list of subscribers that have agreed to receive your content via email, you can use that to send them an email with a link to an embedded form to sign up for SMS as well. You should especially do that with your most engaged audiences. Click here to identify your most active subscribers.
What if I already have my subscriber’s phone number, does it count as having consent for SMS?
No. In addition to having your subscriber’s phone number, you must also receive their explicit consent to receive your marketing text messages.
What if I already have consent for sending emails, can it also count as SMS consent?
No. SMS consent must be received separately from email marketing consent.
Can single opt-in button or checkbox be used for both SMS and email?
No. This would put you at risk at falling out of compliance. You should always use separate button or checkbox for SMS consent.
Is is enough for SMS marketing to have a general “agree to marketing” button or checkbox?
No. Having a “agree to marketing” button or checkbox is not sufficient for SMS in most countries.
Where should I put the disclosure language in a form?
The best placing for the disclosure language would be above the SMS consent button or checkbox.