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Quick Notes on How to Avoid Spam Words and Phrases
Quick Notes on How to Avoid Spam Words and Phrases

Spam triggers are words or expressions that service providers use in their analysis of text messaging compliance

Georgiana Mirita avatar
Written by Georgiana Mirita
Updated over a week ago

What is a Spam Trigger?

Spam triggers are certain words that carriers/providers consider red flags. These terms are frequently present in sent content that recipients mark as spam. Sometimes the words on their own are innocuous, but in combination with other words or depending on frequency of use, it can trigger the spam algorithms. Carriers identify repetitive words or phrases as spam triggers.

We cannot provide entire lists of spam triggers because it is dynamic and defined at the individual carrier level. However, this article helps you understand the types of words that can trigger a spam designation so you can be sure to compose messages in a way that is viewed as legitimate..

You should know that even if a plain ol' English word is not a trigger, repeating the same words and phrases in your content can be suspicious for providers and carriers.

This article was constructed based on FTC regulations and Carriers' guidelines available to customers. Many of these are publicly available and we encourage you to do your own research.

You must adhere to all federal and state laws that may apply in your region.

Spam Trigger Categories

Some of the most commonly encountered spam triggers fall under these categories:

🚨 Urgency- Use of obtrusive language

πŸ”ž Shady- Words that are illegal or unethical, such as those relating to drugs

🎁 Overpromise - Inflated boasts

πŸ’Έ Money- Everything regarding money or offers in general

πŸ‘Ύ Unnatural- Words or phrases that don’t feel natural or that are difficult to understand. Or even an oddly familiar tone.

Phrases like Urgent or Pressure

Even though messages are crucial to every firm, content should not be pushy. A client has signed up in order to receive intriguing content tailored to their needs. Do not force your offer on them, and stay away from absurd assertions.

Avoid phrases containing: now!, today!, urgent!, Don't hesitate/delete/miss!, expires!, click now/here! especially used in combination, they will be deemed suspicious and are not going to be ignored. (Maybe only by your contacts, but not by the receiving carriers!)

Terms that suggest sleazy, spammy, or unethical activity

Spam filters are activated and your content is routed to the spam box rather than the inbox if it includes spam trigger words or behaves in a spammer-like manner. If you show proof of unethical activity, your content is sleazily written, or it contains repetitive or flagged words, be sure that your message will not reach your intended audience. This includes messages that are clearly intended for financial gain.

Avoid phrases containing: congratulations!, mass/bulk email/SMS, no cost/credit/fees, no spam/scam/junk, no interest, debt, investment, deal, obligation, and any repetitive combination that will trigger the spam mark.

Inflated Claims and Promises

When your content emphasizes the wonders of situations or scenarios that are too good to be true, repetitively uses exclamation marks, excessive capitalization, and is sent to multiple recipients, this can be considered a red flag, and your content can be marked as spam.

Avoid phrases containing: join millions/billions, giveaway, bad credit, wonderful, bargain, guaranteed, increase (sales), gift, extra, winner.


It's okay to use words like free in genuine contexts. However, if you use it repeatedly or combine it with other words like free bank account or free housing, spam filters may be triggered and prevent your content from reaching the inbox.

Avoid phrases containing: discount, 100% free, income, investment, card, rates/mortgage rates, score, trial, unlimited, warranty, for just $ (amount), money, dollars, or fast cash.

Jargon, Legalese, or Unnatural Language

It's crucial to follow the rules because failing to do so can result in fines. Keep your content clean and protect your business. Keep yourself away from jargon or faux legal terms, and do not use unnatural language. Respect your targeted audience and respect your brand.

Avoid phrases containing: billing, bonus, one-time message, certified, fantastic, luxury, dear (right or wrong name), satisfaction, teen, wax, vape, cigs, miracle, wife, MLM, marketing.

Content Delivery Tips to Avoid Spam Triggers

Common sense and honesty should be the keys to a safe delivery.

Long story short, when creating your content for your target, avoid tones such as:

πŸ₯² Needy - Avoid using words that make your speech sound desperate

😈 Manipulative - Avoid using words that create a false sense of urgency

😏 Sleazy - Never use words like hot babes, adult content, cannabis, prescription drugs

🚨 Please keep in mind that some of these triggers can also result in account suspension, depending on the policy violation that was made.

Moreover, some of these violations can also attract fines.

Of course, the main path to avoiding spam triggers is to respect the law and active regulations, both in your region and in the receiving contact's region.

We cannot emphasize enough: consent, correct and truthful information, not misleading your receivers, and opt-in/opt-out options (also quickly honoring those opt-out choices) are some of the most valued assets in business relationships. As well as just being human in your interactions!

🧠 Tips!

Moreover, add these tips to the list above, and you should be good to go:

  • πŸ“ Proficient grammar and text segmentation. Proofread!

  • πŸ” Engaging content tailored for an audience

  • πŸ’₯ Don't bulk send the same content; play with it and make it dynamic for your receivers

  • 🎯 Target your audience and send relevant content

  • 🫡 Keep it short and the subject on point

  • πŸ†— Avoid excessive capital letters - no one enjoys somebody yelling at them, even via text!

  • ❗ Avoid colors and too many exclamation marks

  • πŸ”— Clean content and correct links (not broken or sketchy websites)

  • πŸ“€ Make it easy to unsubscribe/opt-out

πŸ’‘ Keep your calls compliant β‡’

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