Before you start using the Sinch MessageMedia app for Salesforce, there are some really important things to be aware of so you don't get any nasty surprises or headaches along the way.
The cost of your messaging depends on how many messages you send, and the number of messages you send is influenced by how many characters you use to write them. So, it's essential that you understand the circumstances where SMS character limits vary.
You can read about this in detail in this article, but putting it simply, if your message contains "special" (aka Unicode) characters (e.g. Emojis), then the character limit per message drastically reduces.
When you're sending messages to a contact via the SMS Message Feed or the Send SMS button, the app is able to detect Unicode characters as you're writing your message and will alert you:
Important - when using merge fields, the character counter can only provide an approximate number of total characters used in your message. This is because the actual number of characters will depend on the data in each record that's associated with each merge field.
For example, if you're sending a Bulk SMS and use merge fields for first name, last name, and town, you might have Jane Smith from Bath (13 characters) and Jacqueline Armstrong from Livingstone (30 characters - which is over double!), therefore the number of characters used per message will vary for each recipient record included in the Bulk SMS.
So as you can see, you really need to pay attention to the content of your messages and be very clear on the character limits involved. Otherwise, you might get a nasty shock when you receive your invoice 😬.