Impactive’s Guide to 10DLC

  • Updated

Overview

Text messaging from brands (whether for-profit companies or political campaigns/advocacy organizations/nonprofits) has increased dramatically in recent years. In response to this increase in texting activity, cell phone carriers like AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, etc. have introduced new regulations to filter out spam texting traffic. These regulations are collectively referred to as “10DLC.” (The acronym “10DLC” technically refers to the “10 digit long-code” phone number that is used to send text messages, if you were wondering.) 

Essentially, cell phone carriers now require brand registration for any entity that sends out text messages; traffic that is sent without registration is subject to significant carrier filtering, meaning that your messages may not go through to your contacts. In fact, as of September 1, 2023, our messaging partners will begin blocking virtually all unregistered traffic, making 10DLC registration mandatory. Every vendor who offers texting is affected by these 10DLC registration requirements. 

Since the introduction of these regulations back in 2021, we at Impactive have worked tirelessly with our underlying messaging partners, who in turn work with cell phone carriers, to maximize deliverability and ensure that our clients’ messages can still achieve their intended program goals - while also doing our part to combat spam and misinformation. 

 

How to Register for 10DLC with Impactive

To use either Peer-to-Peer Texting or Broadcast Texting on Impactive, 10DLC registration is now mandatory. 10DLC registration should be one of your first setup steps upon gaining access to Impactive, so we can get your submission approved and get you on your way to texting ASAP. 

 

To submit your registration:

  1. Visit either the Peer-to-Peer Texting or Broadcast Texting tabs in your admin dashboard. 
    1. Note that your registration applies to both types of texting. You can fill out the form in either place, and the submission will apply to both types of texting. 

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  1. Click Start 10DLC registration. 
  2. Fill out the following information, paying careful attention to give legally-accurate and mistake-free answers: 
    1. Organization’s Legal Name
      1. This does not have to be the same name as your Impactive license - it should be the legal name of your organization, present on IRS paperwork 
    2. Organization’s Website
    3. Organization’s Address
      1. This must be the address that matches your organization’s IRS paperwork, and it cannot be a PO Box. (If that presents issues for your organization, reach out to us at support@impactive.io.) 
    4. Organization’s Campaign Verify token, if applicable
      1. Electoral campaigns, party entities and 527/PACs are eligible to receive a Campaign Verify “token” by registering with Campaign Verify. If your organization is eligible, we strongly recommend completing the Campaign Verify registration and receiving a token before completing your registration with Impactive. But if you’d prefer to get your Impactive 10DLC registration going first, feel free to submit it without a token, and then send your token to support@impactive.io when you receive it; we can manually add it to your registration on our backend. 
        1. Receiving a CV token can be very fast if your organization has public email contact methods available (you’ll typically get the token in one business day), or slower if you have to receive the token via mail (one week).
      2. If you are not an electoral campaign, party entity, or 527/PAC, leave this field blank.
    5. Organization’s EIN
      1. Again, this should match your IRS paperwork
    6. Organization’s Authorized Representative (Name, Title/Role, Email, Phone)
      1. This should be a person who works for your organization that could be contacted for registration verification if needed (though this is rare). Ideally, this person is verifiably connected to your organization - their email address matches the org’s website domain, they work at the organization on LinkedIn, etc.
  3. After triple-checking that all of the information you submitted is accurate according to IRS paperwork, click Submit Registration. 

That’s it! From here, we’ll automatically forward your registration to relevant partners. The timeline for registration approval changes dramatically depending on the time of year and other factors outside of our control, but our clients typically receive approval in anywhere from 1-3 weeks. 

Once you’re approved, your status will be updated on the 10DLC banner on the Peer-to-Peer Texting and Broadcast Texting tabs in the admin dashboard. You’ll also receive a “Trust Score,” which will determine your level of messaging limits. A Trust Score above 50 typically means that you shouldn’t encounter any issues with throughput or deliverability. For any assistance interpreting your Trust Score (or registration status), feel free to reach out to support@impactive.io

 

Do we have to register for 10DLC? 

Yes - 10DLC registration is now mandatory, if you intend to use Peer-to-Peer Texting or Broadcast Texting on Impactive. We won’t deactivate your Impactive license if you don’t register (given that we offer many other features beyond texting), but you will not be able to use our text messaging features. If you’d like guidance on whether and how to register for 10DLC, don’t hesitate to reach out to support@impactive.io

 

Is this the same as the Campaign Verify registration process? 

Unfortunately, no - this is a distinct process. If you're eligible for Campaign Verify (you're an electoral campaign, a party entity, or a 527/PAC), you'll need to separately register with Campaign Verify as a first step - once you receive your Campaign Verify token, you can then begin 10DLC registration with Impactive as a second step. Registration currently takes roughly 1-3 weeks. 

 

What if we aren’t eligible for a Campaign Verify token? 

Registering with Campaign Verify to obtain a Campaign Verify token is the best thing to do if you are eligible - meaning you’re an electoral campaign, a party entity, or a 527/PAC. If you’re any other type of organization (a nonprofit, a c4, etc.), you aren’t eligible to receive a CV token. But don’t worry - it’s entirely possible to text without a CV token. Simply submit your 10DLC registration without a token, and your application will still be reviewed and, hopefully, approved (if you submitted correct info that matches your IRS paperwork). While CV tokens are beneficial in that they unlock maximum message limits, countless of our clients still run very large texting programs without CV tokens. 

 

We've already registered with another vendor. Do we need to register again? 

Unfortunately, yes - you must re-register with every texting vendor, because your registration is specific to sending texts via that vendor's specific texting lane. 

 

How do we minimize carrier filtering? 

Registering for 10DLC is your first step to ensure texting deliverability. Beyond registration, make sure your individual texting actions (whether Peer-to-Peer or Broadcast) are adhering to the 10DLC best practices listed here

 

Additional Impactive 10DLC Safeguards

Beyond providing a built-in 10DLC registration flow, Impactive offers a number of other 10DLC safeguards to help our clients adhere to texting best practices, minimize user error, and ultimately save money (by not attempting to send messages that would be blocked by carriers). These safeguards include:

  • By default, Impactive does not allow multiple outbound texts to be sent to the same number within a six-hour period. This safeguard can optionally be turned off by administrators, but we recommend leaving it on. 
  • Impactive uses the Twilio API to look up all uploaded phone numbers on a contact list and skip any landline phones or disconnected numbers. This means that Impactive won’t attempt to send messages to those numbers (saving you money), and your carrier filtering/error rates won’t be harmed by attempting sends to invalid numbers. 
  • Impactive automatically tracks opt-out keywords like STOP, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE, and others - when a contact sends one of those keywords, they are automatically opted-out from receiving future text messages. That means that you don’t have to rely on staffers/volunteers to mark every opt-out correctly. 
  • Impactive prevents message attempts to T-Mobile users after a campaign's daily T-Mobile message limit has been reached (to prevent you from spending money on messages that won't be delivered). If your campaign consistently hits the T-Mobile daily limit, reach out to support@impactive.io; it's possible to file an additional vetting review to increase the limit. 
  • Impactive will automatically alert account administrators if unusually high error rates or carrier filtering rates are flagged on a particular Peer-to-Peer Texting or Broadcast Texting action. You’ll receive an email letting you know that a certain action is encountering issues; if you receive that email, you should head into your action to pause the action, edit scripts, or make other changes to minimize ongoing errors. (If you need help diagnosing the issue with a particular action, reach out to support@impactive.io.) 



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