Tip #3 : Send SMS Reminders for your Subscription Business

Tip #3 : Send SMS Reminders for your Subscription Business

Hello everyone,

As you all know, we are coming up with a tip every week to address specific business scenarios. In continuation to the previous blog, this week we will be seeing how you can use SMS reminders for your Subscription Business.

Using SMS messages for your Subscription Business:

While managing your subscription business, more often than not, you need to keep your customers informed about upcoming renewals, payment reminders and cancellations. By keeping them informed in advance, you can get quicker payments and also retain the customers in the long run. As a business owner, you need to come up with ways to get your message/reminders to the customers in a more quick and efficient way.

Email notifications satisfy such requirements where you could just send out an email to your customers about the necessary upcoming reminders. However, with a contrasting ratio of four mobile devices to one computer, it is evident what our customers are using as their preferred mode of communication. Along with the growing number of smartphone users day by day, you should try to make your business more mobile-friendly. 

Now, wouldn't it be more efficient to keep your customers notified instantly via SMS about their upcoming reminders? Let us see how we can leverage SMS messages to effectively communicate with your customers.

How to set up a Custom SMS workflow for your business?

You can use our Custom Function workflow to integrate with one of the many third party SMS providers to send out your messages. You can choose your SMS provider based on your region or preference.

Since most of the reminders are events triggered, we are going to use event based workflow for this integration. You can choose the event according to your requirement. Few such examples would be new subscription, subscription renewal and subscription cancellation events. As soon as the event occurs, you will have to use the SMS provider's API to send an SMS to the customer with an appropriate message.

Below are few of the third party providers for which we have compiled the custom functions.

1)  Twilio


     Website                    - https://www.twilio.com/

     API Documentation -  https://www.twilio.com/docs/usage/api
     Custom Function      - GitHub Link

2) Text Local


    Website                    - https://www.textlocal.in/

    Custom Function     - GitHub Link


3) SMS Magic


   Website                     - https://www.sms-magic.com/

   Custom Function     - GitHub Link

For this particular blog, I will be explaining how to integrate with Twilio's API.

Obtain Twilio credentials for authentication:

In order to use Twilio's API, a Twilio account is needed. We will follow the simple token-based authentication using Custom variables. All requests to Twilio's REST API requires you to authenticate using the two important authentication parameters namely Account SID and Auth Token

Login to https://www.twilio.com/ and get the credentials after signing up. Obtain the Account SID and Auth Token.




Code Explanation:

As previously mentioned, you can refer the code for Twilio integration hereThe code is written in Deluge script, which is easily understandable to non-programmers.

1) Initially, we need to paste the Account SID and Auth Token values in the corresponding variables.

2) This snippet of code will be executed after the event which you configure in your custom function. So, construct the SMS message with regards to that context.

3) Once that particular event is triggered, we will be hitting an API request to Twilio with the customer's mobile number and the message.

Getting started with the Custom Functions:  


1. Go to Settings -> Automation -> Custom Functions. 


2. Create a new Custom function. Provide a name for the function. 


3. Choose the module and event according to your need.


4. Copy the code which was given above. Do the necessary changes that are required.


5. Save the Custom function and you are good to go.

Found this useful? Try it out and let us know how it works! If you have questions, do not hesitate to ask!


Cheers,

Sasidaran K,
Zoho Subscriptions.
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