In App Chat & Respond via SMS (Twilio) to Specific Chat Channel

TL;DR: I want 2 way sms to feed in-app chat. But I need it to feed specific chat channels. Like this video but feeding more than just the #general channel.

This idea might not be possible, and I’ll update this thread as I learn.

Plumbing Company Chat App
Let’s assume you own a plumbing company and use a bubble chat app for internal communication. Communication between office staff and plumbers in the field. There’s chat channels (similar to slack) that help you organize conversations about specific jobs.

Chat Example:
The plumber could say “I need xyz part” under the chat channel “#123 Main Street” and then the office knows exactly which project this is for. (this would be through the app)

The Problem:
The office would respond to the plumber and say “the part is ordered” which would trigger a twilio SMS that tells the plumber that the office sent a new message.

I could make the SMS body say: [new message for #123 Main Street] John Doe said : "the part is ordered"

The problem is that to reply, this plumber would need to open his app and find the chat channel. It’s too many steps.

The Solution I Need:
I want this plumber to just reply via SMS and have twilio route that message back to the app including the correct chat channel.

Is this possible?

We do this but with email - the ‘reply-to’ address in the email contains an identifier, and we have a backend endpoint that receives a ‘Parse Email API Call’ from Sendgrid with all the information - we use the identifier to route it to the correct channel.

I am sure this is possible via Twilio as well but don’t know the specifics 100%

1 Like

Love it! So the reply-to email address is created dynamically, and is unique for each channel.

That’s brilliant because the reply-to is kind of hidden.

In the case of SMS it seems I’d need to create a new phone number for each channel. Interesting …

I’m curious, why sms and not simply a web notification that’s pops up on your phone the same way an sms does?

you’d need a native app for that. this would be a solution for PWA users.