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How to Track Permission Status: Contacts Who Opt-In and Opt-Out

Overview

All businesses who use texting are required by law to get permission from those receiving the texts. Once a contact opts-in, or opts-out, it’s important to track their permission status. 

  • When someone opts-out, it is your responsibility to stop communication from the number you used to send that message (marketing number, customer service, or Shout-to-Shout).

  • To learn more about opt-in and opt-out rules, go here.


How to Track Opt-In and Opt-Out Using Groups

When inviting people to opt-in, add them to a specific group they are opting in to (e.g. VIP group). You can add contacts to a group manually, or with a bot. 

When somebody decides to opt-out, they can be removed from the group and tagged for future reference. You can remove contacts from a group manually, or with a bot.

Opt-In: Use a Bot to Add People to a Group

When building your bot that invites people to opt-in, or join your group:

  • Add Trigger Word (e.g. Join, VIP)

  • Click Add Action

  • Click Assign Group

  • Select the group they are opting to join 

  • Include a confirmation/welcome message with a reminder of how they can opt-out

 

Opt-Out: Use a Bot to Remove People from a Group and Tag Them

When building your opt-out bot:

  • Add Trigger Word  (e.g. Leave, NoVIP)

  • Click Add Action

  • Click Remove from Group

 

  • Select the group they are opting out of

  • Click Add Action again

  • Click Add Tag

 

  • Select the tag you want to include (e.g. NOVIP)

  • Send a message confirming they’ve been removed with a reminder of how they can opt back in

  • You can add and remove a contact from multiple groups at a time. 
  • To learn more about groups, go here.
  • To learn more about tags, go here.

How to Track Opt-Outs with a Universal Key Word

If you want to ensure contacts who opt-out don’t get ANY messages from you again, use a universal key word:

  • STOP (e.g. to opt-out, reply STOP)

The contact will remain in your database, but you will not be able to text them from that number again. To keep track of contacts who opt-out this way, Shout recommends adding a tag so you will see, in their contact profile, they’ve opted-out. 

If someone opts-out from your marketing number, they can still be reached through your customer service number. 


How to Manually Track Opt-Outs

Some people will tell you they want to opt-out without using a universal key word, or your trigger word. Since it's your responsibility to stop communication from the number you used to send that message (marketing number, customer service number, or Shout to Shout) you will need to have a system to keep track of these contacts. 

One option is to block a contact, stopping communication from all outlets. To learn more about blocking contacts, go here

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