What We Learnt at The Facebook Partner Summit
Over the last few years, Facebook has been pivoting its focus from public social channels to private communication. From the Whatsapp acquisition in February 2014, to opening up Messenger for brand to consumer communications, and then, at the last F8, announcing the merger of their three main private channel interfaces - Messenger, Whatsapp and Instagram.
Well, just last week, I was in attendance at the Facebook Global Partner Summit, held at the iconic Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco, and this key theme continued. Facebook is investing further in private messaging.
I also had the pleasure of presenting the work that we have been doing with Volaris, a Mexican low-cost airline, who are leveraging messaging channels to drive contact center efficiency and improve customer satisfaction. You can read more about some of their outstanding results here.
Facebook’s latest research shows that there are now more messaging users than social users globally. On their platforms alone; Messenger, Whatsapp and Instagram; they have a combined total of 3.8 billion active monthly users.
The tech giant reported that the majority of consumers now want to utilize messaging throughout the customer journey. They split this into three key areas:
- Discovery: 84% want to use messaging to make an initial inquiry
- Drive business: 74% want to use messaging to make a purchase
- Care: 76% want to receive customer service via messaging
To support this, Facebook is rolling out a range of new functionality. Catalog for Whatsapp will enable brands to showcase products within the app and payments will allow consumers to make purchases within the channel. With Whatsapp for Business already helping brands to deliver customer service, the platform will soon be able to provide a seamless customer experience from product discovery to purchase and aftercare.
Finally, if there was ever any doubt as to whether consumers really want to message brands in the same way they do their friends and family, these findings from Facebook make things crystal clear:
- 67% of respondents say they will message with businesses more frequently over the next two years
- 53% say they are more likely to shop with a business they can contact via a chat app
I’d say that’s a pretty compelling case for messaging!
The New Facebook Messenger Tags
While the partner summit was all about the future, this is all about the here and now. Facebook has released a range of new tags for brands to utilize on Messenger which will open up a whole host of new possibilities on the platform.
The four tags are:
1. Confirmed event update
Send the user reminders or updates for an event they’ve registered for. For example, if they have a dinner reservation that day.
2. Post purchase update
Notify the user of an update to a recent purchase. For example, if their order has been dispatched.
3. Account update
Notify the user of a change to their account or an application. For example, if they’ve been accepted for a credit card.
4. Human agent
Allows human agents to respond to user inquiries. Messages can be sent within 7 days after a user message.
Being able to initiate these kinds of conversations within Messenger is huge news for brands. It also demonstrates Facebook’s shift in focus to move marketing efforts into messaging channels and away from public social media. This is just the beginning though, what other functionality would you like to see adopted into Messenger?
The New York Incite Customer Service Summit
Another week, another big date in the Conversocial calendar. I have the pleasure of speaking at this year’s Incite Customer Service Summit in New York on October 23rd. There’s always a real buzz around the room at this event and I can’t wait to catch up with some of our friends in the industry, as well as meeting a host of new faces too. So, if you’re in town and stopping by, make sure you give me a heads up!
And that’s it for another Conversation Round-Up. I’m still fine-tuning the exact format of these posts and weighing I should use this platform for, so if you have any thoughts of what you’d like to see included or want to hear more about anything you’ve read today, make sure you continue the conversation over on @IdoHacohen.