I find myself laughing at the overabundance of communication methods as I juggle texting, phone, multiple email accounts, instant message, Facebook chat, Twitter and Skype. I constantly wonder if there’s a way to streamline my communication. How can I simplify?
Well, Facebook is attempting to become the hub of all that communication. The new Facebook messaging system, known as “Messages,” is a one stop shop modeled after instant messaging or chat. Facebook Messages wants to be the main platform of communication.
The three main components of Facebook Messages are:
- Seamless Messaging is a convergence system that allows you to send messages through your preferred medium, such as SMS, chat, email or Facebook Messages. The recipient will then get your message through whatever method of communication they prefer as well.
- Conversation History is an attempt to get rid of the conversation threads, like you have in email and text messages today. Instead of threads, all messages through all mediums will can be stored and viewed in one place. Sounds jumbled? It might be. We’ll have to wait and see.
- Social Inbox helps to filter out what you don’t want to read and give priority to the things you do. To do this Facebook Messages has set up a three part messaging system: Priority, Other, and Junk.
The good, the bad, and the ugly truth for businesses
The good news is with Facebook Messages businesses have the opportunity to build a more intricate relationship with customers by delivering information directly through Facebook. The bad news is the Facebook filtering system could mean your important information ends up in a junk folder that will never be read. Even worse, customers can easily block you from delivering information at all. In reality many businesses that offer quality information that a customer finds valuable will still only end up in “Other” – meaning they may or may not ever get to you.
One way to be promoted from “Other” to “Priority” is to offer incentives. Use the fact that Facebook Messages operates in real time to your advantage. Do this by offering timely rewards. For example, if a customer clicks on your newsletter within an hour of you distributing it then give them something in return. The more timely clicks you receive mean your customers consider you a priority.
The new Facebook Messages feature, which was announced earlier this month, is currently being rolled out by invite only. Will Facebook Messages be the answer to the overcrowded inbox? I doubt it. Will it have an impact on marketing with Facebook? Most definitely.