Textel SMSBot Overview

This article will outline some of the functions and details of how the Textel SMSBot operates. For details on installing the Bot, review this article.

Textel SMSBot Overview

The Textel Bot integration with the RingCentral MVP platform allows clients to unlock the ability of text messaging, utilizing the native Teams Messaging functionality of RingCentral. Users do not have to leave the RingCentral platform to be able to have SMS/MMS conversations with their customers and mobile contacts.

How It Works

The Textel SMSBot is a special type of user in your RingCentral instance. As a bot user type, it can handle activity within the RingCentral application and then communicate externally with our platform to handle texting. 

In other words, our Bot acts as a messenger who takes messages sent as a teams message in RingCentral and then transforms them out as a text message to the mobile contact. When a mobile contact responds or proactively texts into your text-enabled phone line, the Bot receives the text message and translates it back into the appropriate team conversation in RingCentral.

Team Management

When you install the Bot, the Bot will then automatically handle team creation for conversations between your text-enabled phone lines and mobile customers. Depending on how you have your phone lines configured, different RingCentral users may have access to conversations with a mobile contact. Only users who have been configured in the Textel platform to have permissions to text on a phone line will have the ability to be part of the team chats with mobile contacts. 

When a mobile contact texts into your phone line, our Bot will automatically generate a team chat in the RingCentral application for that conversation. If an existing conversation thread already exists, the Bot will simply add to the thread. If it is a brand new conversation between a phone line and a mobile contact, it will create a new one.

Team Names

There is a requirement that team names be unique within a RingCentral instance. To meet that requirement, our Bot will generate team names that have a syntax that ensure it is both unique, descriptive, and searchable. Team names are searchable in the top search box of the RingCentral application.

The syntax for team names is as follows:

Sending & Receiving Messages

Within the RingCentral application, ALL of the responses and texts that come from a mobile contact, will be shown as coming from the SMSBot in the conversation thread. This is due to the fact that your mobile contacts are not actual users of the RingCentral application and so the Bot is posting to the RingCentral app on the mobile contact's behalf. See below for an illustration.

When mobile contacts send in messages, the Bot will receive them and post them to the appropriate teams chat in RingCentral. As noted before, if one does not already exist, the Bot will create a new team chat.

Initiating an Outbound Message

To initiate an outbound message, especially to initiate a conversation with a mobile contact for the first time, our SMSBot will respond to a simple command. 

You can choose to type this command as a Direct Message to the SMSBot user or in any bot-powered team chat you have active. 

Where You Can Use This Command

This command will only work as a Direct Message to the Bot user or in team chats that the Bot has created. Any teams that are not created by the Bot and do not have the Bot as the administrator of the team, will not respond to this command.

Simply mention the Bot by name by typing the @ symbol and start typing the Bot's name. After that, simply type the word "message" to the Bot and it will pull up a send message form like the one shown below.

In this Send Text Message form, you can: 

  1. Select from the one or more lines you have text-enabled as the outgoing line
  2. Type in or copy/paste the mobile phone number for the customer
  3. Type out the text message you want delivered to the mobile contact
  4. Hit Send Message

The Bot will then send the message and remove the send message form from the conversation. As mentioned above, if a conversation already exists between your phone line and the mobile contact, the Bot will simply add to that conversation. Otherwise, the Bot will create a new team chat.

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