Common Short Codes

Common Short Codes (CSC) offer marketers unique opportunities to engage their audiences via text messaging. These CSCs are five or six digit codes that may be personalized to spell out a company, organization or a related word. Many organizations may choose to use CSCs to send premium messages, which may charge subscribers additional fees for informative or promotional services such as coupons or news updates. 

The Common Short Code Administration (CSCA) and Neustar are responsible for overseeing the CSCs on behalf of participating U.S. wireless carriers, including administrative, technical and operational duties.

To protect consumers, CTIA and the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA), offer best practices and guidelines for mobile marketers to conduct successful campaigns using CSCs. Campaigns fall into three broad categories, with best practices and guidelines for each:

  1. Marketing: Through CSCs, consumers engage with brands in a completely different way for promotions, information or other general marketing purposes. This may include voting for their favorite contestant or idea during television shows, entering sweepstakes and receiving discounts on their wireless devices.
  2. Philanthropy: Numerous nonprofit organizations are using CSCs to raise money, allowing consumers to donate through their monthly wireless bills.
  3. Political: Federal political candidates and political parties may solicit donations from American citizens through their monthly wireless bills.

Secure a Short Code
If you want to secure a short code to better engage with your audiences, visit CTIA Common Short Codes Administration website for more information, including:

Last updated: November 2013
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