Adding a Send SMS Action

From the Workflow Canvas, click the Add Step button and click the Send SMS item. This will add a Send SMS action to your workflow.

Selecting Recipients

Now that you have crafted your message, you will want to send it to some people. There are 4 options recipients can be configured for a send message step.

  • Ad hoc numbers
  • Variable as a recipient
  • Contacts
  • Distribution list

Ad hoc numbers

Adding an ad hoc number as a recipient allows you to quickly input a number that you don't have or don't want to have as a contact record on your account.

To enter an ad hoc number for your send action, select the send action and open the To section.

In the Add Recipients field, start typing your recipients mobile phone number and then press enter on your keyboard or click the number to select it. You can add multiple ad hoc numbers as a recipient for a send message step.

Variable as a recipient

Workflows supports the use of variables as a recipient. This provides the ability to allocate "dynamic" recipients for your send message steps based on variables you collect throughout your workflow.

By selecting a variable as a recipient, any value that has been captured against that variable in either your trigger or other variable collection methods will be used as the recipient. You can add multiple variables as recipients for a send message step.

💡 Please note: Whilst variables as recipients can unlock very powerful ways to use Workflows, it can also be a point of failure, as you have limited control in some instances of the values that can be entered as a variable.

Contacts as a recipient

Use your existing contacts as recipients for send message steps. You can use attributes on your contact records to search for contacts to be added as a recipient:

Distribution List as a recipient

If you have Distribution Lists set up, you can also use them as a recipient for your send message action. From the Add a list section, select an existing distribution list.

💡 Hint: You can use one or many of the recipient selection methods for a send message action.

Customising SMS content

To customise your SMS message content, click the Send SMS action on your Workflow Canvas, and then click the Content option in the side panel.

You can now craft your SMS message, including any system variables or trigger variables you have available, using the variable pill.

Once you've created your message, click the Update button in the top right corner to save your message. You'll be taken back to the Workflow Canvas where you can select the recipients for your message.

Capturing responses

SMS Messages sent via workflows support the ability to capture a recipients response and store it as a variable to be used in subsequent steps.

This allows you to:

  • Create automatic replies based on keywords, using rules
  • Conveniently automate responses to messages (highly customisable for a wide variety of marketing, operational and crisis use cases)
  • Promote conversational messaging with recipients without the need for additional apps required to be installed
  • Leverage SMS as a channel for maximum cut through, familiarity and engagement

Once you have added an SMS Send Action to your workflow, enable response collection and duration for which you a response will be accepted.

💡 Please note: The minimum collection time is 15 minutes and the maximum collection time is 99 days.

Once enabled, 2 new paths will be created. One for when a recipient responds and one for when no response is received.

✅ Response Branch

Recipients that respond within your configured collection timeframes will move down the Response Branch.

❌ No Response Branch

Recipients that failed to respond within your configured collection timeframes will move down the Response Branch.

Using responses as variables in your workflow

Once the initial message has been sent and the recipient response, the response is captured and stored as variables to be used further down your workflow.

Below is a list of the variables that are collected when a recipient responds to an SMS message and where they can be used.


Summary

Content

Recipient

Condition

Recipient: First Name

If the initial message has been sent to a Whispir contact, either via a contact or distribution list, this variable will display the contacts First Name.

If the initial message has been sent to an ad-hoc mobile number, this variable will not render.

🚫

Recipient: Last Name

If the initial message has been sent to a Whispir contact, either via a contact or distribution list, this variable will display the contacts Last Name.

If the initial message has been sent to an ad-hoc mobile number, this variable will not render.

🚫

Recipient: Phone No.

This is the phone number of the recipient the initial message was sent to.

Message: Time Sent

This is time the initial message was sent to the recipient.

Format: DD/MM/YYYY
e.g. 21/11/2020

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Response: Message Body

This is the message body of the response.

🚫

Response: Time Received

This is time the initial message was sent to the recipient.

Format: YYYY-MM-DDTHH:mm:ssZ
e.g. 2020-11-18T16:35:56.914+11:00

🚫

There are not limits to how many steps you can have collecting responses for SMS messages, allowing you to create complex conversational automations powered by SMS.

Related: Work Location Check in Template

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