Page messaging helps businesses conveniently connect with people about everything from customer service requests to questions about their product, service, and business. Recently we launched new features for Pages messaging, including private and saved replies. As Page Admins consider turning on messaging for their Page or using new messaging features, you may wonder how best to use messaging as a business communication channel.
“Messaging from my business page would be really convenient.”
Anyone with a Facebook business page, or fan page, has the ability to send updates and correspondence to those who engage them directly from the page itself. However, it used to be a lot simpler than it is nowadays. A while back, business pages came with a Send a Message link that the owner could click on, directly from the page home screen. Facebook decided to go and update the process forcing anyone wanting to still be able to send messages in this way, to dig a little deeper.
“Well, that’s annoying.”
Tell me about it. It takes a few extra steps than it used to but the process is still a simple one. In order to access the message system for the fan page, you’ll need to be an admin of the page that will be sending out the message. This is important as only an admin will have the permissions to enable messaging in the Settings.
Sending Messages From A Facebook Business/Fan Page
Page messaging is a feature that allows page admins to communicate directly with their more vocal followers. Once the feature for page messaging has been turned on, those individuals currently following the page will be expecting all messages to have a response attached. So it would be wise to only have the feature enabled when you have the time available to respond to incoming messages.
Responding in a timely manner, something like 90% of all messages receive a response within a five-minute timeframe, will reward your page with a “Very responsive to messages” badge. This badge will let visitors know that you can be reached effectively through messaging as doing so will likely garner a response.
Though it is not expected that every business page meets this threshold, a quick response is highly recommended in order to build rapport and trust with visitors and potential customers. Just remember that only the messages you respond to will count toward your total response rate.
By performing the below steps, you as the page admin will be able to send out and receive private messages from “fans” who have posted on or sent a message to your page. These particular messages can be found in the inbox for the page. Private messages are also enabled for responding to comments made on a page’s post. You cannot send a message directly to any user unless they’ve contacted you first. This includes even those who may have “liked” your page but didn’t leave a post.
Once you’re ready to open up communications between your business and your customers, you can follow these steps:
- Log in to your Facebook account and swap over to the business page you want to enable/disable messaging on.
- Click Settings, which can be found at the top of your page.
- From the “General” tab, click Messages.
- You can now check or uncheck the box next to “Allow people to contact my Page privately by showing the Message button.”
- Finish this up by clicking Save Changes.
Though you can send messages to users who have already engaged in correspondence with your page, you cannot send messages from one page to another. If your page has already been blocked by a user, you will not be able to send them a message either.
Setting a business schedule for your page will likely help with your response time rate. By turning off messaging during your business’s off hours, you can control the influx of messaging to ensure that your visitors’ messages are answered in a timely manner. Thus securing your site a nifty little response badge.
If you do receive messages while away you can always set up an Auto-Reply. A popular feature for Facebook Business pages, this allows you to let a prospective customer now you’re away at the moment, but you will respond as soon as you’re able to.
To set up an auto-response:
- Click ‘Inbox’ located in the upper left-hand corner of your Business Page.
- Click the ‘Automated Messages’ icon in the lower left-hand corner.
- Toggle ‘Instant Reply’ on.
You can customize your message by clicking the ‘Edit’ button.
Messaging Advice For Page Admins
It pays to keep your tone both friendly and respectful when using the messaging feature on your business page. Messaging is a direct and personal communication channel, so write to your customers in the same way that you’d speak to them in person. Context is also important to think about prior to replying back with a message. Being that most messages can be interruptive, it may be best to use the messaging feature only for matters that require immediate attention.
Clear, Concise, and Personable
Though Facebook messages don’t have a character limit, it is still recommended to keep all correspondence short, sweet, and to the point. Ensure that the message you intend to convey is clear and any questions being answered are obvious and easy to understand. Give step by step instructions on your recommended plan of action so as not to leave customers confused. The less reason for the customer to have to respond an additional time, the better your business appears in their minds.
When finalizing your reply, leaving just a business name at the end of the message is too impersonal. Instead, you should think about providing your signature to close out your response. This is a great way to personalize the message and will also help in building trust and rapport with customers.
Quick Reply Feature
As a business, you’re likely to get asked the same questions more than once. Facebook provides a saved replies feature that can help out page admins with quick responses to high volumes of messages that ask similar questions. This gives you the opportunity to save the answers to frequently asked questions and use them to respond without the need to type them out every single time.
Remember that this feature is only recommended for responding to messages inquiring about frequently asked questions. For any one-off questions that a customer may ask, a personal reply is the better way to go.
Facebook allows admins of business/fan pages to reply privately to posts left on their page. This can help page admins to respond more effectively to personal requests made by customers as well as handle customer-specific information.
This is especially helpful in the aid of more private information such as billing questions, sensitive customer complaints, the statuses of orders made, and any other inquiry that includes a customer’s personal information. When it comes to more broad questions that would pertain to the general public and likely help out other page visitors, you should continue to post this information publicly.
Edit Page Notification Settings For Received Messages
When you don’t turn off page messaging, you may find yourself receiving messages at different times throughout the day. Chances are you’re not sitting in front of your computer staring intently at your Facebook page awaiting every question that rolls in.
This is where Page Notification Settings can come in handy. By enabling them, you can receive a notification every time your page gets a new message. This is remarkably helpful for those admins wanting to stay on top of things like quick response times and customer engagement.
Editing the Page Notification Settings not only provides message notifications but can also provide you with:
- Notifications on Facebook each time there is page activity, or every 12 – 24 hours on all activity.
- The type of activity you want to be notified about.
- An email or text each time there is activity on your page.
- The ability to turn off all notifications.
Understand that when you decide to edit any of your notification settings for a page that you help manage, none of the other admins who also help manage the page will be affected. This means each page admin has access to their own notification settings. All other page admins who work on the same page will still only receive the notifications about the page based on the settings they’ve chosen for themselves.
To change your notification settings for a business/fan page:
- Click Settings at the top of your page.
- Click Notifications in the left column.
- Edit your notification settings.
All of your notifications can be viewed by clicking on Notifications located at the top of your page. From here, you’re able to mark all notifications as read by clicking Mark All as Read. In the unlikely scenario where you enable notifications but still aren’t receiving them, you may have inadvertently disabled them on your mobile device.
To correct this:
Try tapping Settings > Notifications on your mobile device and make sure your notifications for Facebook are set to On.
You should also receive email notifications so long as you have them enabled. This is just an extra added feature to ensure that you never miss customer inquiries and feedback.