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This document provides information on the Spark NZ  eTXT  service. The Ultimate Messaging Tool



From May 15, 2014 the new version of eTXT will need Internet Explorer 8 or later or a similar browser. Download the latest version of Internet Explorer or see for other options.
This change will not affect eTXT by email and follows Microsoft dropping their support for these browsers.
For more information call Spark on 0800 438 3898.




Table of Contents


About eTXT

eTXT provides you with an immediate, cost effective and simple way to communicate to your staff, suppliers and customers directly to their text capable mobile devices.

The service offers a couple of simple ways to send SMS messages. In addition, it is easily integrated with your existing systems (using email or a simple API) to update or alert people with the added benefit that the message is received wherever the recipient may be.

eTXT offers various interfaces to meet the needs of users:

  • Via an easy to use web site.
  • From their everyday email client such as Microsoft ©  Outlook ®  or Mail (or from existing email enabled automated servers and processes):
  • For example simply add  to the mobile number you want to send to , and use this as the email address to send a  short  message. For example:
  • Using a simple messaging API for basic integration into your systems.

eTXT on the Web

The eTXT Web site is a messaging service that provides SMS messaging from a web browser to supported mobiles.
All your messaging and configuration options are available at using the login details provided by your Company Administrator (CA) or by Spark NZ.



User Roles

This service has five different user roles:

  1. Admin
  2. User
  3. Addressbook Admin
  4. User Management Admin
  5. Report Admin

While messaging functionality is basically the same, each has different options available for account administration and security.

Admin - Each Company must have a user which is the designated Company Administrator. In addition to the messaging features, this user has additional options for administering their user accounts. Security, user user maintenance and reporting options are the main features and are detailed in the Company Administration section.

User - This user has their own unique login and possibly a separate billing account, and may share address books or other information with other Company Users, but all administration is done by the Company Administrator. The Company Administrator should be contacted with any queries a User may have.

Addressbook Admin -  Can access everything a user can with the addition of being able to access and edit addressbooks

User Management Admin -  Can access everything a user can with the addition of being able to access, create and edit users

Report Admin - Can access everything a user can with the addition of being able to access Reports



Browser Requirements

eTXT makes use of some modern HTML5 code as well as javascript so it wont work so well on older browsers.

We recommend IE9 or above, Chrome, Firefox, Safari as eTXT makes use of responsive design - using up your screen real estate effectively in these browsers. Don't worry if you are using the ancient IE8 - eTXT degrades gracefully just like any decent product should.

To access and use us you will need a browser (e.g. IE, Chrome or Firefox) that:

  • supports cookies
  • has JavaScript enabled
  • has 1024 by 768 or above screen resolution.

Internet Explorer 7.0 and older are not supported and we suggest you visit to find a new version if you are still using early versions of and don't want to be the target of viruses any longer.

Some browser plugins or extensions (eg: Grease Monkey) interfere with JavaScript, so if you are running anything like this then you will need to disable them or add to the exclusion list for the extension.


Browser Security

Security is a major concern when accessing a website you don't know and have not grown to trust yet. All traffic to and from the eTXT service is over secure HTTPS connections. None of your personal information is stored in cookies on your PC but we recommend that you check this yourself to put your mind at ease.
You may also notice that using the browser BACK button may cause an error to be displayed. This reduces the incidence of messages being resubmitted by mistake and also prevents any of your pages being accessed should someone attempt to replay your session from data they may have intercepted. Trust us, that is a good thing even though it is a little annoying at times. You can usually navigate using the buttons and links within the application so there is no need to use the BACK button.

On the subject of security we recommend you do not use the same password on our service as you do for other on line services. On our systems, your passwords are stored securely (hashed), however on your browser they may not be.



Navigation Overview

eTXT's navigation is simple and intuitive

The Active Area you are in is always indicated in blue so you can see where you are in a glanceLet's take a look at some of those icons and get familiar with them.

ComposeSend messages and view recent messages on your account from all sources such as SMS via email, API or Web... all your recent messages are in one place and updated regularly.
 Scheduled MessagesView a list of messages scheduled on your account.
 TemplatesAdd, find and manage message templates.
 DraftsLink through to messages saved by the system before you had a chance to send them. Just in case..
MessagesView and use messages.
 InboxA filtered view of Messages you have received. This includes all messages received as replies to messages sent via the API, Email as well as your web messages.
 Sent MessagesA filtered view of Messages you have sent. This includes all messages sent via the API, Email and your web messages
Conversation ViewA filtered view of Messages you have received. This includes all messages received as replies to messages sent via the API, Email as well as your web messages.
RefreshA filtered view of Messages you have received. This includes all messages received as replies to messages sent via the API, Email as well as your web messages.
ContactsCreate, find and edit contacts in your online address books.
 GroupsManage contact groups within your on line address books.
 Address BooksView a list of your online Address Books, import/export contacts and access the bulk sender page.
 Blocked NumbersUpload or edit numbers that are banned from receiving messages from you or your accounts. You must take opt out requests from recipients seriously, or your service may be disconnected.
Company SettingsAdmin Users Only - Set company Limits to control costs and/or access, manage users and manage Email2SMS allocations.
 Company LimitsSet Limits to control costs and access. Also action new Email2SMS allocation requests.
 User ManagementView a list of users in your group. Click user to edit eTXT settings for them, address book access, SMS via email and long message options. Allows creating of users both individually and through an import process.
 Email2SMSA summary of addresses that have access to SMS via email within your group. Allows allocating a de-allocating of emails and adding emails for use both individually and through the import process.
SettingsAccount level settings allowing you customise your account from time zone to message length, SMS via Email addresses and signature separator as well as mobile short cuts.
ReportsAdmin Users Only - View reports on your Company.






Messages, Drafts, Templates, Blocks, Contacts

eTXT has very powerful searching capabilities built into each of the main screens at the top left of the table.

The search by default does a sub-string search so for example searching for food would return

This can be useful when you want to broadly find something, but at other times you need something more precise, for example you may want to find food at the start of a sentence. In this case your search string should be:

Searching at the start of a sentence

And if you want to find fun at the end of a sentence you would use:

Searching at the end of a sentence

You can do even more powerful searches - in fact you could make it hugely powerful. If you are keen - take a look at Wikipedia and there are plenty of guides on POSIX regular expressions on the Internet


Composing a Message

How to Send a Message

Enter the recipients' number. If you are sending to an existing Contact or Group from your Address Book then you can enter the Name or Alias of the Contact - suggested matches will be displayed as you type.

Press the ADD icon or hit the Enter Key. Your recipient will be validated and recipient list updated. You will see your new or existing contacts appear as a Contact Element

Enter your message and, as you type, the character counter will change.

Double check your message and then SEND it or Schedule it to send at a later date.


It usually works but sometimes your message may not get delivered. If it does not get delivered, check you have number correct, resend the message and if it is still not working then get in touch. You can see from the Status Pie Chart in the Conversation View if there has been an issue in sending your message.

Once you have mastered the sending of a single message you may like to know that you can add more recipients in the same manner as the first or even paste a list of numbers from excel and press the ADD button or use the Bulk Uploader for CSV files of recipient lists. You can Schedule messages, use Templates and even use the Contacts and Groups from your Address Books. The recipient list (Recipients) allows a comma, space or semi-colon separated, list of numbers or Contacts from your Address Book.

For example

john 6427484848;SALESTEAM

Although the service supports sending SMS via Email to mobile numbers, your administrator may have configured the system to only allow messages to be sent to people in your Address Book using existing names or aliases. An additional administrator setting is to lock address books so only the administrator can add contacts to the Company Address Book. This setting will apply to both the Web site and SMS messages via email.*
These added levels of security aim to prevent system abuse. Contact your Company Administrator for more information if you are unable to access your address book.


Forward 2 Mobile

F2M messages are charged against your account

Every forwarded message is charged at the standard destination tariff to the nominated account.

Forward 2 Mobile relays all conversations to your mobile phone via SMS. You can continue your conversation via SMS just like you do on a normal handset, but with the added advantage of all messages being stored within eTXT securely.

Company Administrators can enable/disable this feature at a user level by going into the User Login tab. In here they can enter the mobile number to which the messages can be forwarded. Individual users can then ‘switch on’ the forward function per message thread or as a default for all messages. You can toggle this feature within a conversation or Inbox view on the Quick Replies too. When selected, all messages will forward to the chosen mobile number. Copies of all messages will also appear on the web platform.

Forward to Mobile can only be used by those who have a Spark Number associated with there eTXT account

The following commands can be sent from your nominated handset via SMS:
#STOPF2M disabled for current conversation
#STOPALLF2M disabled for all configured messages in the account effectively disabling until a new message is sent with F2M option enabled
#HOLD1. account default message option is changed to ‘reply 2 web’ so new messages from the web platform are not sent with F2M option
2. F2M is disabled for all existing configured messages


Scheduling Messages

Simple to set-up, eTXT allows you to Schedule your SMS Messages for a future delivery. Recurring messages can also be scheduled which will reduce your workload and make sure your team never misses an important meeting again.

The process of scheduling is only slightly different from sending a message immediately. Once you have composed your message, you are ready to schedule it. Simply select the drop arrow on the Send button to expose more options, including Schedule. You will then be able to set-up the time frame for delivery.

The easiest way to schedule a one off message is to use the calendar to find a day, click that date and then edit the time of delivery. Your calendar will show other messages you have scheduled which is handy if you need to add this one in reference to any others or avoid sending too many messages to the same recipients on the same day!

Alternatively, you can click Schedule again and choose from the delivery options.


Advanced Scheduling Options

Recurring Messages - The process for recurring messages is similar to that as for a single message, you can even change a one-off message to a repeating one simply by editing it after it has been created. When creating or editing a scheduled message, if you want it to repeat then check the Repeats... check box and choose the period type (day, week, month or year) and a number between 1 and heaps. Each period also has different options that makes sense when you see it in action.
Important: For recurring messages you need to specify the start date and the end date. For example: this allows you to run a daily message for the last 3 weeks of term or a weekly message leading up to the election.
Type in the start date and the end date if you want but we find it easier to use the calendar provided and click the start date followed by the end date (or vice versa) until your period is selected.

Time Zones - Handy for if some of your team is not in the next room, you can schedule a message for delivery in a different time zone. Think of it as time travel without the jet lag.

Scheduling to Groups - If you schedule a message to an address book group, the members of that group will be looked up as the message is about to be sent. This is a very powerful feature when you use recurring messages as it allows you to update your address book groups with new members, delete old ones and the next time the message is sent it will go the new set of recipients.


Viewing Future Messages

You can view future messages by clicking the Scheduled Messages link from the Compose Screen. The (default) list view shows your upcoming messages and allows you to click through to view recipients and edit the schedule. If you think you should be able to edit the content here then you are correct. That should be something you can do soon, just not at the moment sorry.

To get other perspectives on your future messages toggle between List, Day, Week and Month views.



eTXT allows you to leave the compose screen and pick up where you left off by finding your message in the Drafts. A handy feature if you are waiting for confirmation on a location or date for a pre-planned event or meeting.


Uploading Recipient Files



The power of eTXT is in the ease of use for group messaging and team communication. Generally the Address Books are sufficient for your needs but there are occasions where you need to send a one-off message to a group of clients from another database. You copy a list of numbers directly into the eTXT compose page to box. if you are copying a column from excel then it will just work. If you are copying from somewhere else then make sure there is a space or new line between each number then click the add button to add your numbers to the message recipients.

Alternatively, you can browse to your file of numbers by clicking the bulk send (it's a wee truck!) icon to the right of the to field and following those instructions.

When sending any message you should consider the opt out responses. See the info box below for more information as it is particularly important when sending bulk messages.

Opt Out

Opt Out is a commonly used phrase meaning that a recipient has indicated that they no longer wish to receive messages from a sender. Regardless of how the recipient originally got on the list, if they opt out then they should be immediately removed from any list or address book and cease to be sent any further messages.

The normal method of opting out is for recipient to reply to a SMS message with STOP or REMOVE. However, if they use any other term, phrase or language to indicate they no longer want to receive messages then failure to abide by that request may result in loss of service. We suggest you add Stop SMS? Reply with STOP to each of your messages.



SMS Merge in Composer

SMS Merge brings you the power of Dynamic Tagging to the composition of Messages. Something you may be familiar with in Email Marketing but now through eTXT, ready for SMS!

Using eTXT SMS Merge Tags in Compose you can personalise the content of thousands of SMS so each one of your clients feel like you are TXTing them, and them alone.

  Prepare A CSV File for SMS Merge and Upload it

The first step to utilise the power of SMS Merge Tags is to prepare a CSV File. This file becomes a list of your Recipients.

Your CSV file should contain a table of tags you want the message to insert the value of. The file must contain one number per Recipient in an acceptable format, and each recipient's details must be on a separate line.

The first column must always be the mobile number.

For example


In this example a header row has been included defining the name of the tag you can insert. If your CSV does not contain a header row then the tag name will default to the value of the first Recipient listed.

Using the Bulk Uploader (truck Icon) you can upload your pre-prepared CSV file. Once it has been verified the CSV File behaves like a Bulk Recipients List. You will be able to see the number of Contacts you are sending to and where.



Composing with SMS Merge Tags

Once you have uploaded your pre-prepared CSV file then there are two ways to insert the SMS Merge Tags into your message.

  1. Through the Insert Tag List.
  2. Directly in the Message Content in the Edit Mode in the following format:

If you are entering the Tag Name directly into the Message Content then your CSV should contain the Header row mentioned above.

Preview Mode

In the Preview Mode you will see the SMS Merge Tags rendered with the longest value as an example of the message you are sending out. This allows you to keep track of your Message Parts and Character Count as you compose so you can tailor you message accordingly. 

SMS Merge Tags and Drafts

Composer automatically saves your messages as you are working and this applies to SMS Merge messages also so you can come back later without losing your Recipients or your Message Content!

SMS Merge Tags and Templates

Please Note: At this time there is no method of saving your SMS Merge Message as a Template.




Templates form the base of a message, allowing you to create and save messages that you send often or may need in an emergency. You can share them (admin users only at this stage) or duplicate/copy them as required.

Templates can be named so they are easily recognised in the template list when creating a message. If your profile allows it, messages can be up to three SMS parts (about 459 ASCII characters, or if the message contains any non latin characters then the max is 201)

You can send a template or canned message from the Templates Section. Alternatively, you can select a template from your list from the Compose page and now through the Quick Reply.



It's good practice to identify yourself when sending a SMS message or when entering an abandoned building at night. From the eTXT Compose page you can set and use your SMS signature.

A signature will take up space in your message so it pays to keep it short. You also have the option of having eTXT start every message you compose online with your signature already inserted so you don't forget to do it. If you don't need it for a specific message then you can delete it as with any text.

The eTXT Signature is unrelated to an email signature. When using Email2SMS with eTXT we also suggest that you use your email to set a signature. See the Email2SMS Section for more information on customising your account to strip extraneous legal jargon whilst retaining your name in an email.


The Inbox

Inbox and Sent Messages

The eTXT Inbox is constantly updating stream of new messages. As new messages are received by the system they will be pushed to your screen and highlighted in bold so you can stay on top of your communications.

If they are not updating fast enough then you can use the refresh button to check for new messages.

If you are using the Chrome browser then you might like to have desktop notifications enabled within your profile to get real-time alerts of new messages.

All Messages

All Messages provides a sequential, unthreaded view of messages in and out of your eTXT account in real-time. This can be useful for monitoring activity (or use the powerful reporting interface)

You can set All Messages to be your default page by visiting eTXT Settings and changing the setting for Home



eTXT can show a conversation view of your Inbox that allows you to see messages that are part of a conversation.

If you are expecting replies to your sent message then this may the best view for you. If you click on any message in the Inbox it will take you to the Conversation view

Clicking on the mini pie chart (circle beside the message) expands the statuses of the message out and shows a large pie chart for reporting purposes

For each message you have several options available aside from viewing the conversation.

  • Quick Reply (see below)
  • Forward - It might be a joke or it might be an emergency message, either way someone needs to see it and you can forward it to them using this option. It prepopulates a new message with the content of this one so you only have to address it and send it!
  • Block - It's not you, they just don't like your message. Use this to make sure you do not annoy them by sending more messages accidently.
  • Delete - Use this to remove the visible reply from your inbox. All other replies will still be available and by deleting this one it may cause the conversation to slip into the past to the point of the next most recent reply.
  • Delete Conversation - This will delete the whole conversation including any Sent messages and other replies in this conversation.
  • Toggle Read Status - Change the Read status of the message to highlight it bold if you need to action it later.
  • View Properties - Simple technical data about the message


Quick Reply

The option to Quick Reply means that you do not need to change screen, fill in any more forms or otherwise interrupt your day. Simply hit the Quick Reply icon and type your message. When you hit send the SMS message will be sent in the background and you can continue to answer your other messages.

On the right of the Send button is a dropdown providing you convenient access to your templates - so you can use them in a Quick Reply.

Quick replies are billable SMS so count towards your included messages or account balance.

Block Lists

SMS messaging is a very personal form of communication and Spark would like you to take as much care with the people you message as possible. If someone replies with stop (or any other variant) then we would really like you to stop sending messages to that recipient. To help you stay on the good-side of your customers and also to prevent any accidents... you should make use of the eTXT blocking functionality.

Whenever you are viewing a message you received you are able to easily Block that recipient. You can even do a batch of them at once to save you time. You can view and search and even edit your blocked number list in the Contacts Section under Blocked Numbers.

Some numbers may not be editable. If that is the case then these have been added by your administrator or at the system level. Do not ask to get them removed, it will not happen as they have been added at the explicit request of the recipient.

Sending unsolicited SMS messages is a breach of your terms of use which may result in your account being disconnected and other action being taken.


Sent Messages


As with the Inbox, the Sent Messages Section allows you to view messages in chronological order or in a conversation view that groups your messages together and shows how many replies each sent message has.

For each Sent message you have the option of forwarding it, deleting, viewing the properties or exporting it. Forwarding a Sent message creates a new message using the content which allows you to send the same message to a new set of recipients.


Message Detail

The message properties and export options allow you to view and save data outside of eTXT if you need it for audit or other purposes.

Within the Conversation view, the status pie can be clicked to examine the recipient detail and view or select a subset of recipients for follow up messaging. Select the recipients by status to Resend, Start a new conversation or Block them. Resending will create a new message with all the same information as the last one. This is useful if you need to resend a message to a group that were unable to be reached.

You can start a new conversation with some or all of the recipients which is useful when you need to follow up the last one. For example you had 50 people respond to your first message and now you want to send a new message to only that 50.


Exporting Message Data

A message list or message detail can be exported to a standard CSV file using the Export* option. This gives you the ability to take the data from eTXT and work with it in other applications such as Microsoft Excel.

If you require more information than is available in these data exports your administrator can run basic reports.



Email to SMS messages




The primary benefit of this feature is that it uses email which you are already familiar with to send SMS messages.
Simply compose your email as you normally would and send to your contacts and their replies will come back to your email.

You should address your emails to a contact alias or mobile number using the domain to create an email address, for example if you have an existing contact in your online address book or


Sending to multiple Recipients

This email will be sent, as an SMS message, to the New Zealand Mobile number 02715414141 and the number matching the 'A.Contact' alias in this users address book. It will also be sent as a standard email to the recipients in the "To:" field.

With group emails, it is suggested that eTXT addresses be entered in the BCC field. This will stop other recipients from attempting to send email messages to addresses they may not have access to.


API Sending

Messages can be sent using a REST API. This is useful for integration with CRM tools such as Salesforce, websites and POS systems.

With callback functionality built in you are able to have replies forwarded back to your application or through to an email address so the write person gets to see the reply as soon as possible.

See the Developers Guide for further details



Contact Management

Using Address Books in Compose 

You can easily browse through or search your Address Books for existing contacts, or groups of contacts, you wish to send an SMS to through the Address Book pop-up.

With Rich Contacts you can click on newly added recipients and quickly add their details to your address book, or you can alter existing contacts all from the convenience of the Compose screen.


Managing your Online Address Books

The Manage Address Books Section allows you to find, create, delete, export and synchronise your address books.

Shared (Company) Address Books each have read and write permissions that you can modify per Address Book per user giving you fine grained control over who has access to your data. Keep in mind though, things can get out of hand quickly and you may find that if you over use these restrictions your users may end up getting quite confused. Keep it Simple.

Only the Company/Group Administrator can create Address Books that can be shared.

The Online Address Books allow you to add contacts you send messages to on a regular basis.
Company Address Books may be created, shared and managed by a Group/Company Administrator and they may choose to share them throughout your organisation.

If you want to use Email2SMS or mobile group messaging then you must use an alias for any group or a contact you create. An alias will be automatically created when you create a contact or group but you can edit them after that as required. Because these aliases can be used as part of an email address, they must conform to those standards and restrictions.

Within each Address Book no two contacts/groups can have the same alias and this is recommended across all Address Book entries too if using Email2SMS. This means that you should not have more than one 'John' alias in any address book, either as a group name or alias, or as a contact alias. This helps avoid confusion when sending to 'John' or using email to send to


What is an Alias?

An Address Book Contact or Group alias is used as the email address when sending SMS via Email. An Alias is a short version of a Contact or Group name.

  • An Alias should be unique. A Contact cannot share the same alias as another Contact OR with a Group within the same Personal Address Book. If you do not add an alias to a Contact or Group then one will be automatically created.
  • If you add the Address Book name to the Contact alias when addressing a Email2SMS message then eTXT will only look in that Address Book for the alias. You do this using contact+address_book format, eg
    If you do not specify an Address Book in this manner than your default Address Book will be processed first, then any Personal Address Books and then any Company Address Books shared with you.

It is possible that an alias may be already in use within a Shared Company Address Book. It is up to you to ensure that you assign an alias to your Contacts carefully to avoid any potential clash. 

Before you send SMS via Email you should make yourself familiar with what addresses you can use.
  • An Alias may contain any number or letter. Spaces or special characters such as ':', '@', '#' etc are not allowed
  • An alias is not case sensitive (e.g 'eric' is the same as 'Eric', 'ERIC' and 'eriC')


Valid Aliases

Invalid Aliases


sv c (contains a space)


Team Jacob (too long)


a.t (contains a period/dot)


Groups and Contacts are listed for each Address Book you has access to. Groups do not have mobile phone numbers associated with them. Contacts have a phone number attached to them. You now have two ways to view and edit a Contact Details. You can access the quick view through the Contact's name where it appears as a recipient, or if you like more room and information in one place, the full page Edit a Contact feature may be more suited.

From any of the contact pages you have options to create contacts, groups or Personal Address Books.


If you copy Contacts from one Address Book to another, eTXT creates a new version of that Contact detail. Consequently, that data may get out of sync over time. eTXT will sync your Contacts in the background if you have that option selected but you can also do a manual synchronisation as required.

If any of the original Contact's details change such as name or number or even tags/labels then these details will be copied through to your Address Book. These contacts will always remain read only so changes can only be made in the original address book

Create Individual Contacts

  1. Choose which Address Book you want to create the new Contact in
  2. enter the Contact's name
    • a unique alias will be generated for the contact that can be used with Email2SMS
  3. change the alias if required (remember spaces and special characters are not allowed)
  4. enter the mobile number

The new Contact may be assigned to any existing Groups in the Address Book.

You also have the option of adding some tags or properties to the Contact such as position, location department or organisation. These tags are displayed in your contact lists such as the Show Groups page. You can customise displayed tags on the contacts page by editing the address book and selecting visible columns Tags can be searched just like other contact details - handy if you have, for example, a team name as a tag and you would like to text them all without having a group.

If you cannot add contacts or groups to your Address Books then contact your Group Administrator as they may have set higher security settings.

Copying Contacts Between Address Books

Contacts can easily be copied between address books - and better still - if you have applied filter criteria for example to copy all staff in a specific team - these can be selected and copied.

To copy contacts between address books, simply view the contacts screen of the source address book and check the contacts. You can filter contacts using the search and select these specifically.

Contacts that are duplicates will not be copied.

Contacts can only be edited in the address book they were created. If you don't have access to this address book contact your administrator.


Contact Groups

  1. Choose which Address Book you want to create the group in
  2. enter the name (remember spaces are not allowed)
  3. and, if necessary, the alias

Any existing Contacts in the Address Book may be assigned to the new Group. You can access a quick view of a Group's Members through the Group's name where it appears as a recipient, or if you like more room and information in one place, the full page Edit a Group feature may be more suited.




Importing Address Books

There are two methods of importing address books. The first is an online process done via the website. The second can be automated to upload from for example a CRM system or HRM system. Both methods perform a complete refresh of the specified Address Book (deleting existing contacts that are not in the file, and adding new ones that are in the file).

The online import can be found under the Add or Edit Address Book screen as shown below

If you are wanting to send to a list of recipients one time only (or the list changes regularly) then use the Bulk Sender option as shown on the right

Online Import


Overall Format

eTXT imports files in the CSV format, such as those that can be exported from Microsoft Excel.

The first line of an import file is the section headers, and the minimum import is a file with a number section header followed by a number on each line thereafter.

You can import any field within the eTXT address book - including email, company, position, function, city, department, country

Restrictions and Rules

When importing an address list it is important that the file meets the following criteria.

  • Comma delimited format (CSV)
  • Header row with the applicable values of "number", "name", "alias", "email", and "group" (or "groups"), .
    • check the spelling of the header rows!
  • Each row must have the same number of fields, blanks are acceptable
  • Phone numbers must be valid numbers that the system can send to, and should be in International Format.
  • Name values must be less than 70 characters long. Longer values will be truncated.
  • Alias values must meet validation requirements
    • Must be less than 64 characters. Longer values will be truncated.
    • Must only contain alpha-numeric characters (a-z, 0-9), hyphen, underscore, or full-stop (ie: no spaces or special characters such as brackets, commas, colons, hash, currency symbols, quotes or apostrophes etc).
    • If no alias is specified, one will be generated automatically from the "email" column, if provided, or the "name" column if there is no "email" column.
  • Email address must be 254 characters or less. Longer values will be truncated.
  • Multiple groups can be defined by pipe-delimiting the "group" field, or by repeating a row and changing the "group" value.
  • To import a file, browse to the location where you have your prepared list of contacts or numbers and then press the 'import' button.

Confirm that the file looks correct, choose an option below and press 'Save'

  • import the list into a new address book, or
  • choose one of your existing lists

Each import file represents the complete definition of an Address Book, including the contacts within the Address Book, and the groups to which they belong. Therefore, if you choose to import into an existing Address Book any existing contacts will deleted and only valid contacts/groups from your import will be in the Address Book afterwards.

If there are any errors or warnings, the system will report them after the import is validated. If you are content to ignore the warnings click "Save" and the file will be imported, otherwise your address book will remain unchanged.

Address Book Import File Structure

At the minimum, the CSV file to import will look something like the following with only numbers specified:


This can be enhanced with names and group information. In the example below, users "John Stamos" and "Nicky Tomb" are in no groups, but "Christine in Accounting" is in the "Work" and "Play" groups:

John Stamos,64210000001,
Nicky Tomb,64210000002,
Christine in Accounting,64210000007,Work|Play
Support Phone,64210000008,Work

In this example we also are importing the Email Address and Department of the contacts


Importing using cURL

This process can be automated on Linux using curl:

A simple way to perform this import process on the command line is using cURL - available on both Windows and Linux platforms.


  • Download the relevant version of cURL for your computer.
  • Move the Address Book CSV file you are wishing to import to the “bin” folder in the cURL directory, for example:- C:\Program Files (x86)\cURL\bin.
  • Create a text file with the details specific to your import (like the examples listed below), save as a .bat file and move to the same bin folder as mentioned in step 2.  
  • Simple run the .bat file and in a few moments the import will be complete. If there are any problems during the import you will see error messages. If there are no issues no messages will appear and you can assume all is good.

A Linux example is shown below:-

A Windows example is shown below:-

Also supported is the "abname" property, which can be used to refer to the address book by name, rather than via the "abid" property. If both are provided then the abname has priority. Note, that the name can be changed via the website but the ID will remain constant so for automation purposes it is suggested that the abid is used.



Exporting Address Books

Address books can be exported from the address book management screen shown on the right. Upon clicking export you will be prompted with a local location and filename to save the address book to.



Customising eTXT

eTXT Settings


Your name is visible to other users within your organisation and can be changed at any time.


Click on the change password text to bring up the change password dialogue. On-screen instructions will provide assistance with providing a password compliant with your organisations selected password policy.

Mobile Number

Your mobile number is an important detail to have correct if you are using the forward to mobile or Instant Messaging service. Please note that users cannot share a mobile number (No duplicates)

Time Zone

Change the time zone to alter the way times and dates are displayed in the web site. This does not alter the time displayed on SMS messages (on the handsets) but will give you freedom to be able to view the website in a local time zone.


Your country affects operation of the product, our smart number helper uses your country to work out the correct destination number formats.


Home Page

If you'd prefer to have a sequential expanded list of messages - like the old Messenger - select All Messages and that will be the default option after login or after a send.

Inbox is the standard

Conversational Message Threading

Conversational Message Threading groups all messages within a related thread under a single conversation much like Gmail/Outlook and similar.

With this box unchecked, threading will be disabled and all inbound messages regardless of conversation will be shown in your Inbox as well as your sent folder.

Long Messages

By default Messenger is configured to restrict you to sending one message part (160 char ascii or 70 char if the message contains any special characters). You can configure your account to allow more than this here.
This long message setting will be applied to all your sent messages (email, web and API) to allow longer messages if you require them.
While each message part is one SMS and will be billed as such, the recipient will generally receive and see one long message (carrier and handset dependant) and each long message counts as a single message towards any company/system message limits.

Desktop Notification

If you are using Google Chrome ( as your browser you can enable desktop notifications so that your task-bar will notify you each time a new SMS/reply is received. It's how we roll. As more browsers start to support this type of alert we will roll it out to those ones too.

Disable desktop notifications within the Chrome Browser Settings.


These settings are shown only if email2sms is enabled for your user by your company administrator.

Signature Separator
If you are sending long messages (see above) then you should consider reducing the risk that long messages sent via email will contain standard signature/footer text included by corporate email systems. The Signature separator setting allows you to define a custom string that will be stripped (along with all text after it) from the email when it is forwarded by SMS. By Default, the service uses accepted Internet standards to determine where an email signature is included, looking for '-- ' (dash dash space) unless another is defined in your Messenger Settings.

Addresses enabled for SMS via Email
If the account is allowed to send SMS via email then any addresses verified and assigned to this account are also listed on this page.

Request Additional
Clicking this button opens a dialogue permitting you to fill out a request for an additional email address to be activated by your administrator. Your administrator will receive a request for this within their Action Items list and can approve it with a single click.





Company Administration


Administration Restrictions

The admin options are only available to the company administrator role. It provides access to options for such things as reports, limits and email address configuration.



has a full suite of reports covering off all the areas you need. As a company administrator you can search and locate messages any of your users or administrators have sent quickly and easily allowing you to take appropriate action if necessary.

Selecting Dates and Sources

eTXT can report on date ranges using an easy-to-use date range picker. You can also report between certain times - very useful if you need to investigate a complaint or similar during a specific time period when you may have many thousands of messages passing through the platform


The report summary is the default screen when you enter the reporting platform.

The summary screen provides overall information on total messages sent and received within the selected period, including statuses. The pie chart detail is available on click or hover.





The users screen provides the ability to see for example who is a peak user on a certain day, and using the search you can drill down by username and see traffic only relevant to that user. This is very useful when you want to find out who uses the system most often and on which day.





The messages screen lets you drill down even further, looking at what messages a specific user has sent and received including the message content and recipients. You can search by recipient or by user




Shared Blocklists



Shared Blocklists provide the facility for a company administrator to block selected numbers for all of their users quickly and conveniently. A company administrator must select the Shared Blocklist menu option to amend this list.

A company administrator may also add numbers to a specific user's blocklist. The user is unable to edit or delete these entries, they are enforced. A company administrator must select the user from the dropdown which then provides access to the per user blocklist.

Users can continue to operate their own personal blocklists regardless.

Company Settings

Within the Company Settings pages you can tweak various settings that apply to all of your users, or just selectively. You are also able to set API and STOP settings.

Company Limits

 The Administrator may set some messaging limits for their company. This limits apply across all accounts within the company. For example, with three accounts and a message limit of 500 then when the combined total for all three accounts reaches 500 no further messages may be sent. Please note their may be a system limit in place for your account to prevent abuse and you may need to contact support in order to have that lifted.


Contact Settings

Close Address Books

This setting applies to all messaging functionality. It stops users from adding to their personal address books or sending to recipients using a phone number rather than an address book contacts. This option overrides other User security settings such as 'Email to contacts only'. If the company security settings impose a closed address book, then that will override any user account settings whether it is enabled or disabled.

Close address books also applies to administrators.

Email to Contacts only

This setting is similar to close address books but only applies to email to sms users - and means they can only send to contacts inside a company address book. This can be useful in controlling system abuse such as staff texting their friends.

Users Appear As Contacts In Compose

With this box checked, any users within your company automatically appear inside the auto-completer in the compose page without any need to add your staff into their own address book.


Mobile Settings


Reply To Mobile

Reply to mobile lets your users send messages that appear to come from their own personal mobile numbers. This is network dependent as some carriers prevent this from occurring to limit abuse (such as pretending to be someone else)
This setting is applied to all users. 

Forward to Mobile Number

Forward to mobile is a feature that enables you to relay traffic to and from your personal mobile for example whilst out of the office. Depending on your plan, there may be additional charges for this service.
This setting is applied to all users.  

API Settings

The API settings sections provide the opportunity to configure the eTXT API which seamlessly functions as part of your eTXT account - meaning you can send messages through the API and view/respond online and vice-versa.

Default URL Format

Callbacks from the eTXT API can be either in XML or the HTTP FORM format. Changing this setting modifies the return payload for all callbacks through this account and can break code on your server if it does not support the selected format.

Default Callback URL for Replies

You can specify the Callback URL for replies within each individual API call and this works well for messages that come in as replies to outbound messages, however it does not function when you have your own virtual number or shortcode. Setting this value to an http or https endpoint is supported and you can also specify an email address using the mailto format.

Default Callback URL for Statuses

You can specify the Callback URL for Status messages within each individual API call and this works well for messages that come in as replies to outbound messages, however it does not function when you have your own virtual number or shortcode. Setting this value to an http or https endpoint is supported. Please note mailto: is not supported for status callbacks.


STOP Processing - Opt Outs

When you are sending messages to lists for example the general public in many regions you must provide a mechanism for the recipients to be able to stop receiving these messages. With this setting you can setup an automatic trigger on specific words such as STOP (or any words you define) being received and these numbers are added to your company shared blocklist automatically. 



Support STOP Processing

With this box checked you are enabling STOP/Opt-Out functionality on inbound messages for your entire company. You must fill out the subsequent Keyword expression box below if this is checked.

Keyword expression for STOP processing

With STOP Processing enabled, you can enter keywords separated by the bar or pipe character (|) with which you want to process the stop request and add it to the blocklist. Please note these are case insensitive and whole words only, so for example 'stopping' would not trigger an opt out if STOP was the keyword but 'stop' would. 


The Users screen shows a list of user logins configured company wide. It includes useful information such as when the last message was sent by that user (helpful for finding inactive accounts), last login and the individual's role. You can search for users using the convenient instant search box. 

Useful Information

On first login, the only visible user will be the company administrator (yourself)


User Management

Clicking on the username or name takes you through to the user details. 

Within user details you can set user-specific permissions and settings that the user cannot override themselves. 

Most of the settings here are self explanatory, for example you can upgrade a plain user into an administrative user. You can set specific user privileges for address books. 

Use this page to see which accounts addresses have been allocated to, and to browse to an account that you want to view in further detail or modify. Authorised email domains (entire domains) must be requested from eTXT support. Email addresses can be added against available domains by administrators for for example if you have the domain, the administrator could assign against one of the users and email sent from that email address would be transformed into a SMS message. 

Activate SMS via Email for this account

Although the service supports sending 'email' to phone numbers, your administrator may have configured the system to only allow messages to be sent to people in your address book using existing names or aliases.

Email to contacts only

To prevent users from sending to numbers that have NOT been configured in one of their available address books check this option. Users will then need to add the contacts to one of the address books and will not be able to send to a number eg

Addresses assigned to this account

The email addresses that will be billed to this account are listed here.
If you have a configured domain or IP address, you may import a list of email addresses to reduce data entry.
You also have the option of adding and deleting addresses from these lists as your needs change.
Only verified addresses may be assigned to an account. Check the 'Summary' screen to check the status of any addresses.

Changing a Users password

You can change a users password through the User Management section. Through here you can either change your own or your users password

To update a password follow the following steps

  1. Go to the Company Settings page through the drop down menu in the top left of the menu bar
  2. Click on the "Edit" Button  next to the user you want to edit
  3. Enter a new password and click the "Save" button



Creating Users

Creating an individual user is in most cases self-explanatory and once the user is created they are free to login. Sending a welcome message saves having to send an email yourself.

Each login user can also have its own email users see Email2SMS for more details on email users

Users can be created with a variety of roles

Admin - Each Company must have a user which is the designated Company Administrator. In addition to the messaging features, this user has additional options for administering their user accounts. Security, user user maintenance and reporting options are the main features and are detailed in the Company Administration section.

User - This user has their own unique login and possibly a separate billing account, and may share address books or other information with other Company Users, but all administration is done by the Company Administrator. The Company Administrator should be contacted with any queries a User may have.

Addressbook Admin -  Can access everything a user can with the addition of being able to access and edit addressbooks

User Management Admin -  Can access everything a user can with the addition of being able to access, create and edit users

Report Admin - Can access everything a user can with the addition of being able to access Reports

To create a user in eTXT you will need to have a billing number added in. To get this added call 0800 438 3898








Importing Users

Using the import function allows you to export a list of users from any of your existing systems and import them straight into eTXT with only a few minor changes. There's even a handy preview screen which allows you to check that all the users details are correct

Importing users is done through a CSV and should be done in the following format

Name, Username,Email,Mobile
James Smith, james.smith,,64210000001
Jason Jones, jason.jones,,64210000002
Mike Jones, mike.jones,,64210000003
Bob Day,,,64210000004
Jane Smith, jane.smith,,64210000005








Email2SMS Management

Email2SMS can now be administered by Company Administrators meaning that you now no longer have to wait for CSR's to allocate or deallocate the email address for use when sending SMS via Email. Not only does this allow for the addition of Emails but also Domains through DNS TXT Record verification.

All Emails and Domains that have been added will show under the Email2SMS Management section with a full search capability allowing ease of use when trying to track down which domains and email address's are currently active and in use for sending, you can also see which account each email address is allocated to.

The account an email address is allocated to will be the account where all messages both sent and received will show up in.


Domain or Email Address Setup

You can configure email addresses to send messages to SMS capable mobile devices.

Address Types for SMS by email

The Email2SMS service is available for the following address types:

  • Domain Name, or
  • Single Email Address, or
  • IP Address.

Domain Name allows SMS messages to be sent from email addresses within the registered Domain. This is the most commonly requested type of licence and allows the Company Administrators to easily manage their users' access.
An Email Address allows SMS messages to be sent from a single registered email address.
Each lower level domain must be registered separately. E.g. is NOT covered if only the domain is registered.
An IP Address allows SMS messages to be sent from any email address that uses the mail server specified at the registered IP address. This type of license is not used much and is not generally recommended. You should be fully aware of IP and network routing issues and discuss your requirements with the service provider if you have any doubts.
The addresses will be automatically assigned to the CA account so it will be able to be used immediately for SMS messaging. See the section on Trouble Shooting if SMS messaging is not available after an address has been verified.
By logging into the website, the administrator may distribute the addresses to their other accounts (if configured). For example a Domain or IP licence may be changed from a 'catch all' where all addresses are allowed (the default) to use a specified list of accounts within that domain. This is done by removing the domain from the CA account and either importing or manually adding the individual addresses to specific accounts as required.
If your group subscribes to the SMS to email service you will be able to assign any of the verified licenses to this account once it is first saved.

Select Email to contacts only, if user's may only send to address contact book. This limits the account to sending SMS messages to people that they have previously added to their online address book. If the user setting, Close Address Books, is selected, then that will override this option and automatically stop the user from sending to any phone numbers.
If the security settings impose an address book only restriction, then that will override any individual user account settings.
Add any available addresses that you want to assign to this particular account. If the address you want to assign is not shown in the list then it may already be assigned to another account in your company. Check the Summary page to view your current assignments.

Adding Email Addresses

Adding an Email Address for use when sending is now easy an instant. Simply click on the Add Address button up in the top right hand corner.

From there all you need to do is enter the email address you want to allow to send SMS messages from and the user you want to assign it to and you are done.

If you already have a domain in place for using Email2SMS the email user will take precedence.

Importing Email Addresses 

Using the import function allows you to export a list of email addresses from your existing systems and import them straight into eTXT for use for sending SMS via Email. There's a handy preview screen which allows you to view the emails your are importing to use for Email2SMS, then you can correct any issues you may have before attempting the import.

Sending a notification is an easy way to let all users know that their emails have been authorized for sending SMS via Email, with all email addresses being active and ready to instantly.

Imports should be done using a CSV in the following format



Adding Domains

Like adding emails for sending via Email2SMS adding a domain can now be done through eTXT. Simply by clicking on the add domain button in the top right hand corner or by clicking on the Add Domain link in the side menu.

Once you have added a domain for use in sending you will need to verify it through a TXT record. This is done by following the instructions below

  1. Log in to your domain provider's administration interface.
  2. Open the DNS settings page.
  3. Locate the domain settings for the domain you entered (e.g.
  4. Set the TXT records value to the value given when adding your domain
  5. Optional: Change the TTL of your DNS record. This will allow updates to be propagated faster.

If you have waited two days and your domain still hasn't been verified then you can manually attempt to verify by going to the Domains page and clicking verify next to the domain you are attempting to verify

Removing Email2SMS addresses or domains

Removing an email address or domain for sending eTXT by email is simple and is done by following the next few steps

  1. Go to Company Settings using the drop down menu
  2. Select Email2SMS from the side menu
  3. Click the downwards pointing arrow next to the email you want to delete
  4. Select the delete Email Address option from the menu

Removing domains can be done in the same way but instead of selecting Email2SMS from the side menu select Domains


Security Policy - IP Authentication

The company administrator is allowed to choose whether mail from certain mail servers can only be processed. This IP Authentication can be turned on at any time and when it is on, only mail from the listed IP addresses (mail servers) will be processed. All other email will be dropped without notification.

To assist you, each time a new server (IP address) is used an email is sent to the CA (only one email is sent per IP address). The address and the sender details are also logged ann displayed in the Message log section of the security page. To add an existing IP address to your Authenticated list simply click the IP in the message log and it will be added. To add a totally different IP to you list, enter it in the proper format and press the add IP button.
To delete an IP address from your Authenticated list, check the corresponding box or boxes and then press the delete button.

If you have any questions about IP addresses, mail servers or how to prevent email 'spoofing' and other fraudulent activities, contact your IT helpdesk.

IP Authentication can be controlled through the security policy section of the Email2SMS menu







For answers to common questions see the comprehensive FAQ section

Trouble Shooting

This section should be used to narrow down the reasons for any issues that may occur with the service. If these steps to not assist you in resolving your issue please see the 'Support' section of this document for information on who to contact.


Lost or Forgotten passwords

If you have lost or forgotten your password, there is a password reset option which will allow you to setup a new password.

This can be found on the Forgotten Password page and will send you out an email with instructions to reset your password. The email will be sent to the email address registered against your eTXT account.

All passwords are case sensitive e.g. a password of "Cu543cdg" must be entered as "Cu543cdg" and not "cu543cdg"


Changing a Users Password

If you have not forgotten your password and are able to login their is two ways to change a users password

If you wish to change your own password this can be done through the settings page by following the following steps

  1. Go to the Settings page through the drop down menu in the top left of the menu bar
  2. Click on the "Change Password" link next to your username
  3. Enter in your current password, a new password and confirm your new password
  4. Once your password fits your companies password policy the "Save" button will become enabled
  5. Click the "Save" button

If you want to change another user in your companies password this can be done through the User Management section. Through here you can either change your own or your users password

To update a password follow the following steps

  1. Go to the Company Settings page through the drop down menu in the top left of the menu bar
  2. Click on the "Edit" Button  next to the user you want to edit
  3. Enter a new password and click the "Save" button

Bounced Emails

Messages may be 'Bounced' back to the sender for a number of reasons. Contact Spark if your messages start to be 'bounced'.

  • System Limits have been reached. This setting is for the entire (web and email) system for your Company. The limits may be for the number of messages per day or per hour.
  • The email to SMS feature has been disabled for the Company.
  • SMS via email functionality is not enabled for the specific login.
  • Incorrect details stored in the online Address Book. Login and confirm the phone number is correct for the Alias you are using.
  • Messages to phone numbers are bounced. Your Security settings may not allow you to send SMS to phone numbers, the recipient will need to be configured in your online Address Book.
  • Network Limitations. Some networks cannot receive SMS messages from the system. Changes to these Network limitations will occur over time.
  • Replying to a Group Email, from your email client, (Reply To All) that included some email to SMS recipients in the To or CC fields. This will send an Email to the system, which will try and assign it to your account so it can use the Alias or Phone number. If this Alias match fails the message will get bounced.

It is possible that the same alias is used by two Accounts for different people. This could mean that the incorrect person receives the Reply To All email.


Messages not received

  1. The service follows RFC-2822 guidelines for message format. Messages that do not conform to RFC-2822 may not be processed or may be processed incorrectly.
  2. If the message status in the web message log is RECEIVED, check that the correct phone number is stored in the online address book for the Alias that was used.
  3. IP Authentication failed. You may be sending your email from an IP address that has not been authenticated by your Administrator. For information on a specific IP visit This site will tell you detailed technical information on IP's, domains and email addresses.
  4. Sender Email Address is not configured to use the system. Check with your Administrator that your address is assigned to an account and that SMS by email is enabled for BOTH the Company and the Account.
  5. If a sender account is unable to send SMS via email, check that email they are sending has the correct 'return-path' in the internet headers. In MS Outlook the headers can be found by opening the email message, and selecting view, options from the menu bar. The return-path is shown in the first line of the internet headers section.
  6. Messages forwarded from email are not delivered to the phone. Most email systems do not alter the internet headers of an email; therefore the 'return-path' of a message is the original message sender. Unless the original sender is also configured, the message will not be delivered.
  7. Messages sent 'on behalf of' another user via MS Exchange or Lotus Notes do not get delivered. Even though the user being 'sent on behalf of' is configured, the return-path is going to be the actual senders address. It is important that the senders address is configured in the system.
  8. Server alerts are not being delivered. Generally a server will use a default address when sending email. This address is generally one of the following formats, each address is invalid (does not meet internet standards) and will need to be changed to an address that is configured in the system.
  9. Server alerts from an internet standard address are not delivered. Some servers use the address format of ''. Whilst this is valid, it will need to be setup in the system before messages can be delivered. Each sub domain (in this case '' needs to be configured separately. If it is not possible to reply to the required verification email from the server address, Level 1 System Administrators (CSR1) can set the address to verified. If you need this to be done please contact Spark.
  10. Some message delays may be experienced due to Network loading.
  11. The original message may be delayed on an email server (ISP or corporate).

This service should not be relied on to deliver important or time sensitive information. This is due to the limitations of email routing and delivery systems as well as the architecture of SMS message delivery.


Replies to emailed SMS messages are not sent back to the correct Address

  1. Check your Email settings for the Sender Email address. Generally, it is this sender address that translates to the 'return-path' internet header that the system uses to sends replies to.
  2. Each Email System will have a different way of configuring the Sender address. If you need assistance, contact your I.T Manager.
  3. If the (mobile) user has stored the number of a message they received from the system on their handset, this my no longer be correctly routed. We use patentedmTagTMtechnology that utilises temporary reply paths for sending messages and routing replies. They do expire and may route to different accounts at that time.


Incomplete Message sent to Recipients

  • SMS messages are limited to 160 characters per part for up to 3 parts. The system takes the Email Subject Line and appends as much of the Email Message as it can, up to 480 characters.
    160 characters is about the length of the following paragraph.

    It's important 2 note that the length of the subject line determines 
    the amount of message sent to the phone. Try 2 Limit spaces & abbreviate 
    or the message wi

    As you can see from the example, it is easy to start a SMS email and run out of space before the main point of the email is made.

  • If you need more you can change your SMS messages to handle up to 3 parts or 480 characters. 480 characters is about the length of the following paragraph

    It's important to note that the length of the subject line determines 
    the amount of message sent to the phone. Try to Limit spaces & abbreviate or the message will end up being cut short. Ensure that if you want longer messages you have 2 or 3 part messages enabled to allow up to 480 characters. This will give you a lot more room to write in to make sure you can fully express the message you are trying to get across. This is a 3 part message which gives you a lot more room be
  • Messages contain my subject line and "(email message unreadable - HTML)".
    The 'text-plain' section of your email is extract for processing. If your email does not include a 'text-plain' section (eg HTML only) then the service will send your subject line, if one is used, and the text "(email message unreadable - HTML)".


More Information

For more information try one of the following resources or email Spark or call 0800 GET ETXT.

For Support Queries call 0800  438 3898

  1. eTXT Website
  2. eTXT Terms and Conditions
  3. eTXT FAQ

Copyright Spark New Zealand Limited All Rights Reserved

Support Queries

If your answer can't be found in this document please call the eTXT help desk at 0800  438 3898


  • None