With Facebook’s latest update to Messenger, it’s clear the company has its sights set on becoming a lot more than a tool marketers use to get cheap clicks. It’s no surprise that Facebook is already a great platform for advertisers—with over two billion monthly active users, you can’t beat Facebook when it comes to overall reach and in-depth targeting.
In addition to segmented audiences and a wide array of retargeting options, Facebook allows you to customize the advertising objective of each individual campaign and drive users to a wide variety of destinations, now including Messenger.
While Messenger may not be the first thing you think of when somebody brings up click-through rates or customer support, Facebook’s latest updates to its versatile communication platform make a pretty compelling argument for businesses to start getting involved.
Natural Language Processing and the Customer Chat Plugin
Back in July, Messenger was updated to support built-in NLP (Natural Language Processing) and make it easier for businesses to create a natural dialogue with users. From launch, Messenger’s built-in NLP can detect locations, dates and times, greetings, amounts of money, phone numbers, emails, and URLs.
Messenger v2.2 was updated to include a new tool Facebook is calling the Customer Chat Plugin. While it’s still in closed beta, developers can apply for access at any time.
The Customer Chat Plugin allows businesses to connect with customers through Messenger directly on their website. The plugin adds a small icon similar to any other support service that allows users to quickly connect with a business using their existing Facebook profile.
Messenger’s new Customer Chat Plugin gives users the ability to start a conversation from the website, close it, and pick it up from an entirely different device. Giving a conversation context is a huge part of increasing your overall engagement—and that’s just the start.
Facebook Messenger offers a whole host of other benefits for businesses looking to generate leads towards the top of their marketing funnel and create a more organic customer support experience.
Traditional Customer Support Chatbots Are Pointless
There’s a large selection of support chatbots already on the market, but nobody has perfected the messaging experience quite like Facebook.
With over 1.2 billion monthly active users, Facebook’s biggest advantages over its competitors are its extensive reach and seamless integration. Instead of requiring users to create a fresh profile whenever they want to use the support chat on your website, Messenger allows users to log in with their existing profiles and take their conversation between devices.
Creating a chatbot with Messenger allows you to lift user details and build a long-term marketing funnel without much extra effort.
Messenger Is About to Dominate Customer Service
The days of forcing users to create separate accounts just for customer support inquiries are finally over. With Messenger, when a customer visits your website, they’ll be greeted with the familiar blue Messenger icon and their Facebook profile photo.
With amazing NLP and payments already built-in, Messenger is continuing to dominate the landscape when it comes to streamlining the process of connecting businesses with their customers. With the Customer Chat Plugin, users will finally be able to start their support conversation from one device, leave the site, and resume from another—increasing engagement and reducing the likelihood that they’ll abandon their request.
On the business end, using Messenger for customer service significantly reduces the delays and disorganization associated with traditional email support systems. Chatbots are easy to setup, and with Facebook’s latest version of NLP, they’ll be able to handle a ton of various customer support requests. Instead of waiting hours for an agent, chatbots may finally enable customers to get answers immediately.
Use Messenger to Generate Leads and Increase Retention
Email marketing campaigns are on the way out. Let’s face it: when was the last time you made a purchase because of a newsletter that came to your inbox? While email isn’t showing any signs of dying in the near future, email marketing has been seeing a steady decline in engagement for a while now.
On the other hand, Messenger is fresh—you can grab the viewers attention without being overbearing. Chatbots built on Messenger are a significantly more engaging way to build subscription-based content. Hubspot recently tested it and found their Messenger broadcasts saw a 47% increase in open rate and 11% increase in click-through rate.
You can’t argue with the results—people are more engaged in content when it comes through Messenger. If you’ve got a lot of content with outbound links or rich media, consider switching over to Messenger for delivery.
Messenger is also great at streamlining offline and online communication at live events. From sending out information like meeting times and locations to submitting questions and leaving reviews, a Messenger chatbot is a perfect way to interact with event attendees without overwhelming your inbox.
Get Rid of Traditional Landing Pages and Forms
Similar to Facebook ads with Messenger as the destination, using Messenger as an alternative to a landing page is a great way to decrease bounce rates and generate more leads. Another added benefit of Messenger is that you can deliver downloadable content directly in-chat.
It’s common to use Facebook ads and landing pages to collect user data and build a mailing list, but it’s not ideal considering you have to send the user away from Facebook. As a result, most of these landing pages suffer from incredibly high bounce rates. Instead of sending users to a bunch of blank text fields, try using a chatbot built on Messenger to collect user data in a more interactive way.
Using Messenger allows the user to fill out your form and get the downloadable content without having to leave Facebook. After testing Messenger, Hubspot saw a 477% reduction in cost per lead—prompting a serious discussion regarding whether or not businesses should be switching to Messenger as their primary content delivery channel.