This is the place to find news, hints and stories about Taykt.

Taykt lets you create a text-in word, so that anyone who texts your word to 82958 will get your message straight back to them.

Great for putting on posters, or anyplace that someone might want to act on your word there and then.

Get started at http://taykt.com/

Taykt is a UK-only service at the moment.

Monday, 14 December 2009

Use Taykt to Receive Texts.

Taykt has been great for getting your message, more information, specific details to people straight away: they text your word in to 82958, we send back your message. But what if they have more to say to you? Well, now we've added the ability to have the full text message forwarded on to your email address.

What this means is you can now say "text HI to 82958 followed by your message" for example and you'll get the message forward to you. (If there's no message, you'll still get an email telling you a text was sent).

Here's some ideas of where you can use this:
  • If you're running a live event, use Taykt to receive requests and comments via our short code, 82958.
  • If you're a store that closes, why not set up a Taykt word and put it in your window to let people take your opening times with them, plus ask you questions.
  • Use it as a way to start a conversation: ask for a name, postcode, contact details... whatever you need.

Turn email forwarding on at the Settings page at http://taykt.com. You'll find it on the left: just press the "turn forwarding on" button.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Treasure Hunt

You can use Taykt to set up a nice automated Treasure Hunt (sometimes called a Scavenger Hunt). The idea is that teams are given clues and then have to go to particular locations and figure out the answer to get the next clue. That leads to another, and eventually to a goal.

By SMS the hunt is for words. If you were organising the competition, you'd give the teams the first word. Maybe it'd be "GO" and when they text GO to 82958 they'd get the first clue. Perhaps it'd be a cryptic clue that would lead the teams to a famous name on a plaque. So you'd set up the plaque name as a keyword too, and the message would be the next clue. The idea is each clue should lead to a word or number that the teams can text to 82958 to get the next clue. If you're cruel, you might even set up near-miss words with messages that taunt the teams if they text them in.

For the final text, set the message to be something that causes the teams to rush back to you. "Congratulations! You've solved all the puzzles. Now claim your prize: first team to find me back at base and show me this text is the winner. Run!"

As the organizer, you can sit back watching your Taykt.com dashboard, and the count incoming messages against each word will tell you how the treasure hunt is progressing.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

How estate agents might use Taykt

We don't sell houses, but if we did, we'd use Taykt. First, we'd realize that people might take interest in a house for sale, and want a few more details, but maybe don't want to get into a conversation right now or get calls later if it turns out not to be the place for them. This is a great fit for Taykt because Taykt protects the house-hunter's identity, but allows the estate agent to gently introduce themselves.

So there's a place for sale. We'd create a word, and provide a few details. Maybe it's "Flat 4, Some Street", so we'd pick the word "FLAT4" which anyone walking by could text in. Then we'd enter the message you'd get back, something like: "Flat 4 is a 2 bedroom flat, modern kitchen, finished to a high quality with shared garden, ample parking Call RSK, 8am-8pm, to find out more 02088407677".

The word and the text number are what we need to include on the sign outside the property.

(Hopefully it's obvious that this image is photoshopped - we don't know RSK, and we're just using the image as a suggestion of what could be done.)

When someone texts FLAT4 to 82958, they'd get back our message. They don't have to remember to check the property out later, they don't have to remember who it was for sale through: they get that information in their hand immediately.

What we've done with our message is hand over the basics, and given that prospective buyer our contact details on their phone there and then. Maybe we'd include the price, maybe a link to the web site, perhaps a more personal message from a particular agent. But when that buyer is chatting about the property later, or maybe doing a bit of searching for more information, they have the starting point on their phone ready to go. And they can select your number and call.

As an estate agent, we get to gauge interest from the stats on the Taykt dashboard. And, importantly, we can change the message any time we want: "Sorry, Flat 4 is now under offer. Flat 7, in the next street, may be of interest: 2 bedrooms, view across the park. Call RSK, 8am-8pm, to find out more 02088407677".

Of course, we could get fancy with the API and let our developers plug into Taykt to create words for us when we enter new properties on our sales and letting systems, but that's a something for another day....

You can get started with Taykt.com now and give your customers instant access to information they can take away with them.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Did you know you can use Taykt to run a poll by SMS?

Well, you can. It is quick to set up and incredibly flexible. Below are the steps involved in running a mobile poll on Taykt. For our poll, we'll consider whether people prefer Ant or Dec (a silly example as of course everyone prefers Ant. No, wait, is it Dec?).
  1. Create an account, if you don't already have one, providing your first option as your text-in word and the reply people will receive when voting for this option. We'll start with Ant.

  2. Now, create your other poll option, Dec.

  3. Advertise your poll

  4. To check how your poll is going, simply log in and your dashboard will show how many votes the different options have received.

  5. When the poll is complete you can update the reply message so people know the poll is closed.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

We've added email reminders

We now send an email reminder on Friday mornings of words which are due to expire in the next 7 days and links to renew them for another month. Words receiving texts will automatically roll their expiry date for another month and so they will not appear in the email.

To unsubscribe from these mailing, there is a link at the bottom of the mail each week or you can log on to Taykt and disable the mailing on the settings tab.

Let us know what you think.

North Atlantic Radio

North Atlantic Radio, a podcast by Brian Suda and Matt Riggott has a great review of Taykt and our API. You'll find it in Episode 7.

Friday, 9 October 2009

Website Changes

We've been working with Danny Hope to improve the user experience when visiting Taykt, and Ellen de Vries to improve the copy in places. To date this has involved an initial set of user testing to get a baseline of what people understand of the service, a rather major redesign of the site to vastly simplification of the look,feel and user interaction, and a second set of user testing plus some final tweaks.

We're happy with the progress so far and have really enjoyed working with Danny and Ellen. We're going to stand back from making anymore changes for a little while and concentrate on some other areas.

If you have any feedback, positive or negative about the site, we'd love to hear it.

Thursday, 17 September 2009

Web Hooks

Taykt now has Web Hooks!

What is a Web Hook?
A Web Hook provides a way to call to other web services or applications when an event occurs.

How does this help Taykt?
In the case of Taykt, this is useful as it allows you to dynamically respond to texts as they come in. You don't need to rely on the static message provided when you created you text-in word.

How does it work?
When someone texts-in, we look to see if the matched word has Webhooks enabled. If it does we POST the message contents and an identifier to the WebHook URL. The service exposed by the URL can then use this information to dynamically create a reply.

What is the identifier?
When someone texts-in for the first time we assign their phone number an identifier which we send with every Web hook request. This allows you to customize the reply you send to people based on previous correspondence. For instance, if you were trying to provide more than 160 characters of information. You may want to provide the ability for people to text in the same word and get different content. Or if you are providing a key of some kind, you may want to give a single key per phone number. After the initial text, you may want a "Sorry, you are only allowed one key, per mobile number".

How do I get started?
To start using Web Hooks with Taykt, you'll first need to enable them. This is done on the Settings page, simply click the "Developer mode" button. Once Web Hooks are enabled you'll see another text field when creating/editing your text-in words.

More about Web Hooks:

Friday, 4 September 2009


Taykt now has a RESTful API to enable interaction with other services - Mashups. The initial version of the API supports creation and deletion of words and updating the message of a word.

You can find out more at api.taykt.com.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Taykt at £5 App Event

I spoke for about half an hour about Taykt (where we are, where the idea came from) to an audience in Brighton on 11 June.