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Creating an IVR Interface
Creating an IVR Interface
Bryan Nye avatar
Written by Bryan Nye
Updated over a week ago

MetaLocator provides the ability to search your location data using a touch-tone phone.  This system can deliver results via an automated text-to-speech engine that allows you to configure your dialog without hiring voice-over talent.  MetaLocator's IVR (Interactive-voice-response) system is an Add-on to the base subscription plan.  Only users with the Add-on will be able to access the IVR configuration.   Learn more about the IVR system capabilities.

MetaLocator IVR and SMS services are available in the United States only at this time.

Like most options in MetaLocator, the IVR options are contained within an Interface.  The IVR interface can be created by creating a new Interface using the default settings, then click "Change Layout" and choose IVR Interface as shown below.


Expand the IVR Settings group to reveal the options available when configuring your IVR Locator.

IVR Interfaces provide a phone-based gateway to another, standard MetaLocator interface.  This means that two interfaces work together to provide a complete IVR locator solution.  The IVR interface contains the configuration options related to how the IVR system behaves and also contains a setting to designate which other standard Interface will support the logic behind the search results.  This allows you to filter or change the search rules used in the IVR interface just as with a traditional interface.

After adding the IVR add-on to your account, the help desk will provision a custom telephone number for your IVR Interface.  If you have specific needs regarding the area code or other aspects of your provisioned number, contact the help hesk before adding the add-on to your account.

Text2Voice Engine

When authoring the IVR settings and choosing the language script, think less about the proper spelling of words and more about the proper pronunciation.  To make the voices correctly pronounce uncommon words – especially those unique to a particular industry – we can switch specific words for their phonetic spellings.  For example, the acronym "POTUS", when spoken by the Text 2 Voice engine sounds more like "Paaht"-"US".  To force the correct pronunciation we instead would use 'poe tus', yielding the correct pronunciation.

IVR Settings

  • Initial greeting:  This is the first greeting spoken to the customer.

  • Prompt 1: This contains the postal code search prompt.  Be sure it instructs the user to press "1".

  • Prompt 2: This contains the operator connection prompt.  Be sure it instructs the user to press "2".

  • Error or Non-response: When a user does not respond to a prompt, or presses an invalid number, this string of text will be spoken.

  • Search Results Message:  The language spoken just before reading off the first search result.

  • No results message:  When the user's search did not yield any results, this language will be spoken.

  • Search Prompt:  After pressing 1 after "Prompt 1", this text is spoken.  Ensure it instructs the user to search for a postal code and complete their entry with the pound key.

  • User Text Message Prompt:  The text spoken to prompt the user to have a text message sent to their phone.

  • Result Template:  This template controls the spoken format of search results.

  • Phone Result Template:  If the result has a phone number populated, this text is spoken just after the Result Template.

  • SMS Text Message Format: This template controls the content of the SMS Text message.

  • Goodbye: This text is spoken in cases were the phone tree has run its course.

  • Allow the user to request a SMS Text of the location data:  After returning the search results, this option will prompt the user to optionally request the data via SMS Text.

  • Allow the user to request to be connected to the requested location's Phone.  This option will prompt the user to connect to the phone number stored with the location.  The number must be in the location's "Phone" field and must also include the area code.

  • Allow the user to search again?: Prompts the user to perform another, additional search.

  • Allow the user to hear next-closest result?:   Optional prompt to allow the user to hear the next-closest result.

  • Allow the user to request that the information be repeated?:  This prompts the user with an option to re-state the location details.

  • Operator Number:  In "Prompt 2" above, the system will connect the user to this number.

  • IVR Number: This is provided by the MetaLocator help desk.  This is the number to call to access this IVR Interface.

  • Secondary Language Prompt: If provided, and the Secondary Language Interface is also provided, this option will be spoken as the initial prompt to press 3.

  • Secondary Language Interface:  Another IVR Interface to which this call will be redirected after pressing "3" as prompted in the "Secondary Language Prompt".

  • Secondary Interface Language Code:  The language code  that should be used when speaking the Secondary Language Prompt.  Possible values include en, en-gb, es, fr, de, it.  These language codes do not translate the prompts, they only inform the text2voice engine as to the intended dialect.

  • Interface for Search Rules: Choose an existing MetaLocator Interface.  This interface will be queried for the search results.

  • Language:  The intended language of this Interface.  Possible values include en, en-gb, es, fr, de, it.

  • Voice: The voice to use in the text2voice engine.


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