How to navigate global business messaging challenges

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This is part 2 of the State of Messaging 2023: Realization.

Want a stat that’s out of this world? 5 billion people globally send and receive SMS messages. That’s about 65% of the world’s population! Going global is undoubtedly an alluring opportunity if you’re a business ready to scale its messaging. However, like any significant new endeavor, evaluating the considerations and challenges is crucial for success. As a global leader in this space, we recommend looking at both the benefits and challenges of global messaging.

The benefits of global messaging

Advantages of Over-the-Top (OTT) Application Messaging

How annoying is getting a ‘Not Delivered’ text notification? (As a mobile user, business message deliverability is an entirely different issue!) When sending messages over data, there’s always a chance to run into that possibility. However, Over-the-Top (OTT) Application Messaging can be a great alternative. OTT apps and services use the Internet rather than traditional wireless, wireline, or cable operators’ networks. 

Benefits of OTT Application messaging include:

  • No fixed file size for multimedia images: Better visually engaging content. 
  • Group messaging: Allows multiple people to communicate at the same time and place. 
  • Audio and video calling: Seamless quality without worrying about data disruptions. 
  • Highly accessible: The popular OTT, WhatsApp, is available in over 180 countries!

The global opportunities of SMS

As impressive as OTT can be for messaging worldwide, it’s not without its hiccups. For example, the apps are only available from iOS or Android app stores, which can create a host of problems from a logistical standpoint they are closed ecosystems and require your customers to have them installed. That’s why it is wise to consider all options, and SMS can be an exceptional tool for messaging in most countries. 

Benefits of global SMS include:

  • Massive reach: Connects with your customers worldwide with one of the simplest and most effective messaging channels. 
  • Ample availability: Allows the sending of SMS/MMS on any cell phone. It can even work on 2G networks, which expands your audience. 
  • Popular communication channel: SMS remains a top three channel in every region worldwide, including Europe, Eurasia, North America, Latin America, the Middle East, North Africa, Africa, India, and Asia-Pacific.

The challenges of global messaging

International regulations 

Each country has a different outlook on what should and should not be regulated. On top of this, political and economic unions can affect which countries are regulated under laws applicable to that territory. For example, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) applies to all European Union member states and has inspired similar data protection laws worldwide. 


Going global is highly appealing but also comes with many obstacles. With the growth of mobile technology and accessibility worldwide, SMS opportunities are lucrative. But in 2023, requirements are very complex, which can cause total befuddlement after navigating the complex telecommunications ecosystem.

At Bandwidth, we call this state of mind telecomplexity. Don’t panic, though! We can help guide your communications across borders as you look to grow!

Next steps for international messaging

Going global is highly appealing but comes with many obstacles. With the growth of mobile technology and accessibility worldwide, messaging opportunities are lucrative. But in 2023, requirements are very complex. Here at Bandwidth, we are experts at helping folks solve telecomplexity. We can help guide your communications across borders as you look to grow.

Whoever said, “It’s a small world,” clearly didn’t venture out much. Messaging has connected people from near and far, and SMS has an open rate of 98%! It makes sense that many businesses want to scale their messaging internationally. Remember that due diligence makes all the difference, be sure to consider the channels, the varying regulations, and telecomplexity -trust us, it makes a world of difference! ?

2023 is the year to take your business messaging to the next level – don’t forget to check out the 2nd blog and 1st blog. For a more in-depth view, check out all our findings in the annual State of Messaging ebook.  Also, be on the lookout for our webinar, where you can learn from leading experts in the messaging industry.