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Custom keyword handling

Two-way messaging uses short codes and keywords to deliver text messages to mobile users. It requires end users to send a keyword to Braze to which that user will receive an automatic reply.

Applied correctly, two-way messaging can be a simple, immediate, and dynamic solution to customer marketing, saving time and resources along the way.

Two-way messaging speeds

Two-way messaging leverages custom events to make this seemingly smooth customer client exchange possible. Due to the nature of two-way messaging, you may find a slight increase in response time. The following lists the implications of including two-way messaging:

Type Speed Notes
Known phone numbers 3-5 Seconds A known number is a number that has already been assigned a phone attribute and is already subscribed to a subscription group within Braze.
Unknown phone numbers 10-15 Seconds An unknown number is one that has not yet been identifier. For more information on how unknown phone numbers are dealt with, refer to Short and long codes.

If you require faster sending speeds for unknown phone numbers, reach out to your customer success manager or contact support to discuss your options.

Custom keyword messaging handling

Custom event fired  
sms_response_subscriptionName_custom Response examples => Status, Coupons, News
Included event properties  
- message_body: users SMS response
- to_number: usually short code the clients used to send SMS
- from_number: user’s phone number
- sms_message_id: messaging service ID
Message body =>
Users response returned as all lower case
  • Anytime a user texts an SMS response that is not a default keyword to a phone number in a given Subscription Group, a custom event like sms_response_SubscriptionGroupName_custom with event properties message_body, to_number, from_number, and sms_message_id will be sent to Braze.
  • Use this custom event with the property message_body assigned as a custom keyword to trigger an SMS campaign from Braze.
  • The message_body custom keyword value must be lowercase.

This feature relies on user aliases in order to properly assign custom events to user profiles in Braze. If no Braze profile exists with a user alias of the user’s phone number in E.164 format, the call to the /users/track endpoint will fail silently. The alias should be set in the following format either through the SDK or the Create new user alias endpoint:

  1. alias_label: phone and alias_name: users_phone_number
  2. Phone numbers must be in the E.164 format (e.g +19173337578).

If using the Create new user alias endpoint, to ensure E.164 compliance, add a plus “+” prefix as the default phone field does not automatically include this symbol.

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