Gone are the days when your Facebook messages were exclusively for friends and family, with more and more brands sliding into your messages in a big way. With Facebook private message evolving into an instant chat service, it’s natural for brands to grow right along with it – giving you instant access to brands and companies during their designated business hours and brands taking advantage of the service as both a customer service platform as well as a distribution channel.
Whether you use the desktop client that pops up when you log into Facebook or the standalone chat app for mobile devices, having on-the-go access to your favourite brands is more important than ever before.
Depending on what your brand is all about, you might be a publisher or news-based blog that replies on clicks, reads and shares to function. Sometimes you might miss important updates and articles on the newsfeed thanks to algorithms, but taking the messenger approach lets brands connect directly with their audience. Publishers should consider an approach that lets users subscribe to these direct updates instead of bombarding users with messages they might not have wanted in the first place. Since messenger is still a personal spot for so many Facebook users, approach this method with caution
The most common use of the Messenger service is for customer service and client relations, replacing the sometimes cold email responses and FAQ website sections. Allowing customers to interact via instant Messenger creates a more human connection between brand and client – as they can see when their messages are being read and being responded to. Having these conversations private but easily accessible makes them easier for the client to refer back to, instead of sifting through dozens of emails in a long chain. Brands can also use it to diffuse tense situations with a client who might be frustrated and making public posts about said frustrations. Using Messenger allows brands to handle complaints in a timely and private manner all within the same platform the complaints originated.
In the early days of Facebook, it would have been impossible to fathom that you would eventually be able to make purchase or order service through it – but that’s exactly what Messenger can be for brands. In recent months, Facebook has been testing “M”, a virtual assistant of sorts that can order food, track shipments, book hotel rooms, shop online and so much more. They plan to change the way users interact with brands, so it’s important to make your service available for any type of development that comes from it. Brands can send receipts or manage other requests through the Messenger service, not to mention answer last minute questions about a product or service.
Set It All Up
On brand and company pages, Facebook now makes it possible to add details about when messenger is online and available for instant chat, so customers can expect to interact with brand page being manned by a social media manage or team member and now wait for a reply. Facebook is also allowing brands to send initial introduction messages to customers when they first connect with them on the platform, making things a bit more personal from the get go.