While working on applications for real estate brokerages, BetterVoice founder Lyle Pratt identified a need for improved voicemail services for real estate agents who operate principally from their cell phones. His customers needed an easy way to build a customizable, complete voicemail system that would flexibly handle incoming calls with voice, SMS, and email messages. Information from calls needed to be automatically extracted, integrated with existing CRM and other systems, and prioritized for response.


Using all of Twilio’s features (SMS,MMS, voice, client and SIP) BetterVoice developed a drag-and-drop call flow builder that offers voicemail transcription, call information capture, dynamic call handling, CRM integration with more than 250 systems, call prioritization, outbound VoIP forwarding, and SMS messages.

To start, BetterVoice users select an available local or toll-free phone number from Twilio’s worldwide pool of SMS-enabled phone numbers. A default call flow consisting of a greeting and voicemail is automatically configured, but may be easily changed using their built-in Template Wizard. Through simple drag and drop actions, customers configure a call flow with recorded or text-to-speech greetings, menu branching based on caller key presses, voicemail, call forwarding, and SMS responses. Powerful conditional actions allow special call flows based on callers’ menu selections, caller identity, time of day, and caller identity. Conference rooms come free with every BetterVoice account and can even be established on the fly.

Unlimited length voicemails are automatically transcribed to text. Voicemail notifications are delivered via the BetterVoice app, via text messages, or in an email. Voicemails are saved in the cloud and accessible from the web.

Twilio was chosen as the communications cornerstone for BetterVoice because of the breadth of its offerings: a pool of available phone numbers, automated call flows, call recording, voice to text transcription, SIP integration, and SMS messaging. BetterVoice chose Twilio after considering in-house development and competing solutions.


“Twilio had the REST API that we needed. With little telephony experience, it was a no-brainer to use Twilio,” said Lyle Pratt, Founder and CEO of BetterVoice. When using Twilio, BetterVoice found that they didn’t need to be telephony experts – that they could concentrate on their application and rely on Twilio to provide a robust infrastructure. BetterVoice built and improved their products as Twilio expanded its feature set. Among the unique aspects of Twilio that BetterVoice uses are its broad range of available phone numbers, worldwide SMS operation, and iOS/Android voice clients.

As BetterVoice was generalized and added more features, its client base expanded from real estate agents to a wide range of professionals that rely on cell phones for their business. Users find that it allows them to improve their customer relationships, saves time, and closes more business. BetterVoice says that its customers report 100% increase in professionalism, 90% less time wasted listening to voicemails, 75% improvement in callback efficiency, and 50% more sales conversions.

The Children of America Schools, for example, needed 62 custom IVR for their school system. They needed call recording, an easy-to-use dashboard, and quick setup. BetterVoice built their system for just $35 per IVR.

Scalability is also a significant benefit for BetterVoice customers. The Goodlife Team Real Estate Brokerage was able to give all 50 of their agents and all new agents a customizable work phone number that is integrated with their CRM system.

Working with Twilio as a partner has been a rewarding experience for BetterVoice. Benefits include early product betas, ability to influence Twilio features, sales leads, and closer participation in the Twilio community.

BetterVoice continues to improve its features and functions. They intend to increase the power of their smartphone app to become a complete IP phone comparable to the most advanced wired phone system.

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