We’ve just released a super exciting new feature to Respond Flow: Keyword Auto-Responders. In this article, we’ll go over what keyword responders are, a few of the many ways you can use it, and how to set them up in Respond Flow!

What are Keyword Responders?

Keyword Responders are an incredibly simple way to automate your responses when people text in. They’ve long been used in text message marketing, primarily for short code or 5-digit text marketing as a call to action. When someone texts in a keyword to the designated number, it tells the texting platform what action to take.

With Respond Flow’s keyword responders, you can automatically set up a response based on the keyword someone texts in. It’s that easy!

However, to put the Respond Flow twist on keywords, we’ve made it to where you can receive messages that include more than just the keyword. For example, if your keyword is “Order”, someone can text you saying:

“Hi, I’d like to place an order”

That way, your messages can stay human, personal, and engaging!

How can I use Keyword Responders?

There are tons of different ways you can use keyword responders no matter what kind of business you have! Here’s a few examples that you can try out.

Schedule an appointment

Does your business revolve around scheduling appointments with leads? If so, keyword responders are a great tool to help you automatically schedule those meetings!

If you’re wanting to automatically ask leads to schedule a meeting after they put their info into an online form, you can set up your trigger message when a new contact is added to say something like:

Hey {first_name}, Pete from Respond Flow here! I’d love to find a time for us to meet, want to get a time on the calendar?

Now, you’ll want to set up your keywords with potential response messages. For this example, use these keywords to trigger the response:

“Sure, Good, Great, Yes, Yeah, Ya, Yup, Works”

While people might respond with more than just that keyword, Respond Flow will automatically pick out the defined keywords from messages and trigger the auto-response. When you set up the auto-response message, you should include a link to your Calendly or similar scheduling software. That way, people can easily follow your link and set up a time to meet with you!

Mobile Ordering

If you’re in the retail space and would like to set up mobile ordering via text message, you can use keyword responders to set it up!

If your sending out a mass message to source orders, include something like:

If you’d like to place an order, just respond with “I’d like to place an order”

If you’ve set up your keyword responder to answer any message that includes the word “order”, you’ll be able to send them a link to your mobile ordering platform or just ask them what their order is!

Answering Simple Questions

Often times we see businesses answering repetitive questions over text about basic information like where they’re located or what their hours are. With keyword responders, this becomes a breeze!

To answer questions like “Where are you located?” or “What are your hours?” with keywords, you’ll want to set up keyword responders that match those questions.

For “Where are you located?” you can set up a responder for the keywords: “located, address, location” to reply with the location of your business.

For “What are your hours?” you can set up a responder with the keywords: “hours, open, close” to reply with your business’s hours.

While this method may not be foolproof, you can always add more keywords to an existing keyword event by creating a new auto-text to send the same message to the same tags with the new keywords you would like to add.

How do I set up Keyword Responders?

If you already have a Respond Flow account, the first thing you’ll want to do is create your message templates. To do this, go to Messages -> Create Templates. Once you’re there, select “Create New Template” and write your message. If you’re planning to provide multiple keyword options for a single text, make sure to utilize a naming scheme to match each of your potential responses. For example, your text might include:

Reply “I want to make an order” to place a mobile order, or reply “I have a question” if you need help with anything!

For this message, you can name the template something like “Text in: Keyword Prompt”, and then name your mobile order response “Text in: Order Response”, and your question “Text in: Question Response”. This helps you manage your templates and make sure that you’re setting up the automation with the correct response messages.

Once you’ve created your templates, go to Campaigns -> Auto-Texts on the sidebar menu. Once you’re there, click “New Auto-Text”. You should then see a window like the one below pop up.

Next, you’ll select your trigger event. In this case, you should select “When a contact texts a keyword”

Once you choose this option, you’ll want to select the message you want to send when you receive the keyword.

Once you’ve selected your message, you can set your wait time and add your list of keywords. If you’re using multiple keywords for the same auto-response, make sure you hit the enter key between keywords.

Once you’ve got your keywords and your wait time set, you can either go ahead and set your keyword responder live, or you can add an additional layer of segmentation. If you only want the keyword to trigger when someone new texts in, you should choose the segment by tag option and use the tag “inbound” like below.


If you’d like to learn more about how keyword responders work, just text “I’m ready to text” to (405) 266-5924 or schedule a time to meet with me below!

Peter Daggett

Author Peter Daggett

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