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Facebook Messenger: Opportunities for Businesses

Facebook Messenger opened up for businesses, thus created a new channel for customer business interaction that has huge potential as businesses meet customers where they already are.

by Valerie Kolling

Facebook Messenger dominates the messenger market

1.2 billion worldwide users were actively communicating via Facebook Messenger in April 2017. In 2015 Zuckerberg announced that it is Facebook’s plan to “help people to communicate more naturally with businesses.” All aspects of business-customer-interaction, whether communication or transaction, should be tracked and displayed in the messenger. This would not only keep users even more engaged on the platform but also open up revenue opportunities for Facebook.

„Facebook’s plan: to “help people to communicate more naturally with businesses.”“

Opening up the messenger platform for third parties allows businesses to implement and integrate Facebook Messenger into various service processes, thus to simplify communication within. Users are not only used to communicate via messenger, but they also frequently use it throughout their daily routines and integrate the part that we call rich content. Rich content means anything that enhances written sentences such as pictures, videos, GIFs, emoticons or even PDFs. Numbers support this observation:

  • More than 17 billion photos are sent privately via messenger every month
  • Every day there are on average 22 million GIFs being sent - that makes 254 GIFs every second
  • Over 380 million emojis are being sent every single day

Putting Facebook Messenger into action there are various scenarios and use cases in the area of service, e-commerce and logistics possible. For businesses that means a flexible, personal and digital approach to communicating with their customers that ultimately results in a stronger relationship. Via messenger customers can, depending on the type of service or product, order, book or receive live updates.

Customers can, for example, buy a new pair of RayBan sunglasses on Facebook Messenger, just to give a simple example. While the business keeps them up-to-date on the status of their order, they can enhance the messenger communication with rich content.

Facebook Messenger for customer interaction

More than 1 billion messages are already being sent between customer and business. Implementing chatbots can increase efficiency for businesses. Since having opened Facebook Messenger for businesses there have been 18.000 chatbots developed and integrated. At this point, we would like to stress that first and utmost Facebook Messenger is one possible channel for communication between businesses and customers. The logic that lies behind any interaction such as dynamic product or service catalogs or payment processing still has to be developed by the business. Or they resort to service providers with expertise for business logic within Facebook Messenger.

Providers of chatbots are typically the first sort that come to mind to support businesses with messenger usage. They do simplify various bits and pieces but only within a holistic concept. (We already had a look at chatbots - check it out here)

With or without chatbot support, what we want you to take away is the importance of messaging for customer business interaction and conversational commerce as such. There has been a shift from classical call center and e-mail towards messaging and consequently a coherent shift towards personal and direct communication towards customers.

Customers clearly articulate their expectations towards businesses by rewarding those, that speak their language and meet them in their preferred way of communication. Currently Facebook Messenger should not be overseen.

Valerie Kolling
Valerie is part of Mesaic's communication and marketing team.

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