Get Started with Voice Alerts/Notifications Broadcasting Using Node.js

    Overview

    This guide shows how to broadcast voice messages to multiple recipients at once. You can play recorded audio when the call recipient answers or use text-to-speech, as we show here.

    You can use voice broadcasting for use cases such as:

    • Bulk voice calling campaigns
    • Emergency notifications
    • Survey campaigns
    • User feedback
    • Announcements
    • Promotions and special deals
    • Reminder campaigns

    You can broadcast voice alerts either by using our PHLO visual workflow builder or our APIs and XML documents. Follow the instructions in one of the tabs below.

    To implement Voice Survey use-case, you can create and deploy a PHLO with a few clicks on the PHLO canvas. PHLO also lets you visually construct your entire use-case. With PHLO, you only pay for calls you make/receive, and building with PHLO is free. You can refer to the below instructions in the Using PHLO tab to begin your implementation.

    Outline

    Broadcasting- Call Flow

    Implementation

    In this section, we will guide you to create a PHLO to implement Voice Survey use-case.

    Prerequisites

    1. Create a Plivo Account(if you don’t have one already): You can sign up with your work email address and complete the phone verification step using your mobile number.
    2. Set up your Dotnet dev environment: To set up your dev environment in your .NET(C#) programming language, please refer to the instructions available in the Set up Your Dotnet Dev Environment section.
    3. Buy a Plivo number(optional): You must have a voice-enabled Plivo phone number if you are willing to receive incoming calls. You can purchase numbers from the Numbers section of your Plivo Console. It is also possible to purchase numbers using the Numbers API.

    Create the PHLO

    You can create a PHLO by referring to the below instructions to implement Voice Survey use-case:

    1. On the top navigation bar, click PHLO.The PHLO page will appear and display your existing PHLOs, if any exist. If this is your first PHLO, then the PHLO page will be empty.
    2. Click CREATE NEW PHLO to build a new PHLO.
    3. From the CREATE A NEW PHLO window, select Build on a blank canvas, and then click CREATE PHLO. The PHLO canvas will appear with the Start node. Note: The Start node is the starting point of any PHLO. You can choose between the four available trigger states of the Start node; Incoming SMS, Incoming Call, and API Request. For this PHLO, we will use the API Request trigger state.
    4. Click the Start node to open the Configurations tab, and then enter the information to retrieve from the HTTP Request payload. For example, this could be a list of numbers to call.
    5. Click Validate to save the configurations for the node.
    6. From the list of components on the left-hand side, drag and drop the Initiate Call component onto the canvas. This will add a Initiate call node onto the canvas.
    7. Connect the Start node with the Initiate Call node, using the API Request trigger state.
    8. Configure the Initiate Call node to select the From and To numbers from the Start node.Note:
      • Enter two curly brackets to view all available variables.
      • The values for the From and To numbers are picked from the HTTP Request Payload. Make sure to clearly define the variables in the Start node.
    9. Rename the Initiate Call node to Call_Customer. Note: You can rename the nodes as per your requirements. We are using specific names in this example to help you relate to the different nodes used in this use case.
    10. Click Validate to save the configurations for the node.
    11. Similarly, create a node for the IVR Menu component and connect it to the Initiate Call node using the Answered trigger state.
    12. Click the IVR Menu node to open the Configurations tab.
    13. Configure the choices for the IVR Menu from the Configurations tab. In this example, we will select 1 and 2 as the allowed choices and enter a message to play to the user.
    14. Rename the IVR Menu node to Question_1, and then click Validate to save the configurations for the node.
    15. Similarly, create another IVR Menu node and rename it to Question_2.
    16. Connect Question_2 node to the Question_1 node using the 1 and 2 trigger states.
    17. Configure the choices for Question_2 from the Configurations tab. In this example, we will select 1 and 2 as the allowed choices, and enter a message to play to the user.
    18. Enter a message in the Speak Text field. The caller will be greeted with this message. Note: You can also configure the Language and Voice for the message.
    19. Click Validate to save the configurations of the node.
    20. Create a node for the Play Audio component.
    21. Rename the node to Acknowledge_Participation using the Configurations tab.
    22. Connect Acknowledge_Participation node to the Question_2 node using the 1 and 2 trigger states.
    23. Configure the Acknowledge_Participation node to speak a message to the customer.
    24. Click Validate to save the configurations for the node.
    25. Next, create a node for HTTP Request component and rename it to Handle_Callback.
    26. Connect the Handle_Callback node to the Acknowledge_Participation node using the Prompt Completed trigger state.
    27. Configure the **HTTP Request_1 **node to post the survey results to a website.
    28. In the Params tab, add answer1 and answer2 as Key.
    29. For answer1, enter two curly braces and select Question_1.digits.
    30. For answer2, enter two curly braces and select Question_2.digits.
    31. Click Validate to save the configurations of the node.
    32. After you complete the configurations, click Save. You can trigger your PHLO using the PHLO URL to test it out.

    Set up Your Node.js Dev Environment

    You must set up and install Node and Plivo’s Node SDK to implement Voice Survey use-case. Here’s how.

    Install Node.js

    Operating SystemInstructions
    macOS & LinuxYou would already have Node.js installed, you can check this by running the command node --version in the terminal. If you don't have it installed, you can install it from here .
    WindowsTo install Node.js on Windows you can download it from here and install.

    Install Plivo Node.js Package

    • Create a project directory, run the following command:

      $ mkdir mynodeapp
      
    • Change the directory to our project directory in the command line:

      $ cd mynodeapp
      
    • Install the SDK using npm

      $ npm install plivo
      

    Trigger the PHLO

    Once you have created and setup your Node.js dev envrironment, you can go to your Plivo Consolse and copy the PHLO_ID. You can integrate a PHLO into your application workflow by making an API request to trigger the PHLO with the required payload.

    With Static Payload

    You can choose to either configure the mandatory params required for a PHLO while creating the PHLO itself or, you can pass the params as payload while triggering the PHLO from your app.

    Note: When you configure the params while creating the PHLO, the values are hardcoded, and they act as static payload.

    With Static Payload

    Code

    Now, create a file called TriggerPhlo.js and paste the below code.

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    var plivo = require('plivo');
    var PhloClient = plivo.PhloClient;
    
    var authId = 'auth-id';
    var authToken = 'auth-token';
    var phloId = 'PHLO_ID';
    var phloClient = phlo = null;
    
    phloClient = new PhloClient(authId, authToken);
    phloClient.phlo(phloId).run().then(function (result) {
        console.log('Phlo run result', result);
    }).catch(function (err) {
        console.error('Phlo run failed', err);
    });
    

    With Dynamic Payload

    To use dynamic values for the parameters, you can use the liquid templating params while creating the PHLO and pass the values while triggering the PHLO.

    With Dynamic Payload

    Code

    Now, create a file called TriggerPhlo.js and paste the below code.

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    var plivo = require('plivo');
    var PhloClient = plivo.PhloClient;
    
    var authId = 'auth-id';
    var authToken = 'auth-token';
    var phloId = 'PHLO_ID';
    var phloClient = phlo = null;
    
    var payload = {
        from: '+14157778888',
        to: '+14157778889'
    }
    phloClient = new PhloClient(authId, authToken);
    phloClient.phlo(phloId).run(payload).then(function (result) {
        console.log('Phlo run result', result);
    }).catch(function (err) {
        console.error('Phlo run failed', err);
    });
    

    You can get your Auth_ID and Auth_token from your dashboard AUTHID

    You can find the PHLO_ID on the PHLO Listing page. PHLO Listing

    Test and Validate

    You can save the file and use the below command to run your code.

    $ node TriggerPhlo.js
    
    Note: If you are using a Plivo Trial account for this example, you can only make calls to phone numbers that have been verified with Plivo. Phone numbers can be verified at the Sandbox Numbers page.

    To implement Voice Alerts/Notifications Broadcasting use-case in the traditional API/XML way, you can refer to the instructions in the below section to begin your implementation.

    Outline

    Outbound- Call Flow

    Implementation

    In this section, we will guide you in setting up an app using Plivo’s API/XML to implement Voice Alerts/Notifications Broadcasting use-case. First, let’s make sure you meet these prerequisites before we dive into the code.

    Prequisites

    1. Create a Plivo Account(if you don’t have one already): You can sign up with your work email address and complete the phone verification step using your mobile number.
    2. Set up your dev environment: To set up your dev environment in your preferred programming language, please refer to the instructions available in the Setting up the Dev Environment Guides.
    3. Buy a Plivo number(optional): You must have a voice-enabled Plivo phone number if you are willing to receive incoming calls. You can purchase numbers from the Numbers section of your Plivo Console. It is also possible to purchase numbers using the Numbers API.

    Prerequisites

    This section will guide you through how to use Plivo APIs to make voice calls from your application. First, let’s make sure you meet these prerequisites before we dive into the code.

    • Plivo Auth Id and Auth Token: You will find your Plivo Auth Id and Auth Token on the home screen of your Plivo Console. Click here to sign-up for a Plivo account if you haven’t already!

      Find Your Auth Credentials on Plivo Console

    • Plivo Phone Number(Optional): You can purchase numbers from the Numbers section of your Plivo Console and use the same as the caller ID for the outbound call. This number will also help you receive incoming calls as you must have a voice-enabled Plivo phone number to do the same. Please note that you can also purchase numbers using the Numbers API.

      Buy a New Plivo Number

    • Answer Url: When a call is answered by the destination_number, you can control the call flow with the help of the answer_url set in the API request. Plivo will invoke the answer_url specified as soon as the call is answered and expect a valid XML response with instructions to handle the call. For example, you can use https://s3.amazonaws.com/static.plivo.com/broadcast.xml as answer_url to test your first outgoing call. The XML response of this is:

      <Response> 
      <Speak>Congratulations! You are offered a promotion and press 1 now to take advantage of this offer before it expires.</Speak> 
      </Response>
      

      As you can tell, the XML above holds instructions to say ‘Congratulations! You are offered a promotion and press 1 now to take advantage of this offer before it expires.’ to the callee. You can find the entire list of Plivo XML verbs and their details in the XML Reference section of the website here.

    Set up Your Node.js Dev Environment

    You must set up and install Node and Plivo’s Node SDK implement Voice Alerts/Notifications Broadcasting use-case. Here’s how.

    Install Node.js

    Operating SystemInstructions
    macOS & LinuxYou would already have Node.js installed, you can check this by running the command node --version in the terminal. If you don't have it installed, you can install it from here .
    WindowsTo install Node.js on Windows you can download it from here and install.

    Install Plivo Node.js Package

    • Create a project directory, run the following command:

      $ mkdir mynodeapp
      
    • Change the directory to our project directory in the command line:

      $ cd mynodeapp
      
    • Install the SDK using npm

      $ npm install plivo
      

    Create the Voice Broadcasting App

    Once you have the above prerequisites set, You can follow the below instructions to create an app implement Voice Alerts/Notifications Broadcasting use-case and leave a text-to-speech message once the call recipients answer the call.

    Now, create a file called Broadcast.js and paste the below code.

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    var plivo = require('plivo');
    
    (function main() {
        'use strict';
    
        var client = new plivo.Client("<auth_id>","<auth_token>");
        client.calls.create(
            "+14151234567", // from
            "+14157654321<+14157654322", // to
            "https://s3.amazonaws.com/static.plivo.com/broadcast.xml", // answer url
            {
                answerMethod: "GET",
            },
        ).then(function (response) {
            console.log(response);
        }, function (err) {
            console.error(err);
        });
    })();
    
    Note:
    • Replace the placeholders auth_id & auth_token with your credentials from Plivo Console.
    • We recommend that you store your credentials in the auth_id & auth_token environment variables, so as to avoid the possibility of accidentally committing them to source control. If you do this, you can initialize the client with no arguments and it will automatically fetch them from the environment variables
    • You can use process.env to store environment variables and fetch them while initializing the client.
    • Replace the placeholder +14151234567 with the Phone number which you have purchased +14157654321 and +14157654322 with the phone number you will be making calls to.
    • Both +14151234567, +14157654321 and +14157654322 should be in E.164 format

    Test and Validate

    Once you have created the Voice Broadcasting App, You can save the file and use the below command to run your code.

    $ node Broadcast.js
    
    Note: If you are using a Plivo Trial account for this example, you can only make calls to phone numbers that have been verified with Plivo. Phone numbers can be verified at the Sandbox Numbers page.