Stepping on the road of promoting our platform I engaged myself in several thematical Facebook groups. Quite often people ask there for advice on how to start with social message marketing as they are not happy enough with the results of cold emailing.
As this is quite a new marketing approach I do lots of explaining how social and messaging apps are designed, how they struggle with spammers, meticulously and carefully protecting own users from intrusions of those “gentlemen of the road” pitching their stuff.
Everyone has his story to tell but today’s was quite interesting. Let’s call the guy Robert.
So Robert bumped with me in one of the comments thread and then PMed me asking why his response rates in Facebook messaging were far lower than in LinkedIn.
In the beginning, I thought Robert is an owner of Facebook Business Page engaging with his customers via messages. But after some discussion, I understood that Bob was exactly the opposite: he was trying to offer his services as a digital marketer to Facebook Business Pages hustling businesses from his personal profile.
Having found a target Page he checked the condition of it and then hit standard “Send a Message” button to start his cold pitch.
To pay respect to Robert he was well prepared: he pointed out for real problems with the Page, content, and necessity to do FB Ads. To support his professionality and to drag the attention of his potential customers he was sending short videos directly via Messenger.
The only problem was that he faced the anomality in Facebook — after around 10 daily “blind” contacts his messages were “delivered” but not “read” by the Pages he prospected to.
I told Robert this was a limitation of Facebook as they track the messaging activity of each user: it does not matter if you are an ordinary user or a Business Page. If you are sending same repetitive messages, Facebook thinks you are a spammer (I kinda agree with them) and your messages just “not shown” to the final destination. It is delivered but never seen by the recipient.
Robert was a bit shocked as he said that in LinkedIn almost 80% of his “repetitive template” video messages got a response. Looks like LinkedIn does not pay so much attention to this type of cold-selling. But Facebook does and this sales strategy does not seem valid in the long run.
Then I explained to Robert how principles of messaging are designed in social and messaging apps:
- A person (user, customer) has to send a message first.
- In Europe with strict GDPR Business Account has to get opt-in consent from a user to send him/her each type of outbound messages (just news updates, or service notifications like for order tracking or abandoned cart tricks, price lowering alerts, etc.)
- Only after that business will be able to message his subscriber back. Moreover, there are strict timing and message quantity limits! In Facebook, there is a 24-hour window which gets re-opened to the next 24 hours after the Customer replies. Otherwise, the person will not simply see the messages as they do not get through the “window”.
So message marketing might seems tricky. But after all torments, there are rewarding sky-high open rates of at least 90%. Email marketing can’t even dream of such rates :) Surely there are tricks to avoid the window being shut (like sending scheduled engaging messages with buttons) but that is a topic for a separate post (or you can PM me if you are interested).
Getting back to our Robert… After he understood the “white way” I described he replied:
“Yeah, I feel my way would be faster to get clients which are kind of what I’m after. Your way is great when you are building a personal brand and have a baseline of clients so you don’t need to do the cold stuff.”
A while after our talk I discovered a “hack” that might help Robert and similar digital hustlers in the long run. Even though I am not welcoming such unexpected cold activities the feasible way for long-runners might be:
- Create a Business Page on Facebook with your name. Like, create a Business Page named “Robert Robertson”.
- Post good relevant content and promote it organically in Groups, your landing pages, wherever you do. Start building an image of the professional in what you are selling. Anyway, when you are doing cold contacts you have to look professional so show it on the “Business Page of your name”.
- Start engaging customers so they subscribe to your social messaging channels (including “your name” Facebook Business page).
This way you will build a subscribers’ base. These are the customers that are not in pain at the moment, and thus they are not buying from you. When they are ready, when they face difficulties for which you can help them, then you have a customer!
- Start doing message marketing to your subscribers with good proper regular content. Bring something useful to the table. People will get loyal and, at that very moment, they will know who will solve their problem. You!
- Doing messaging one should be careful to avoid blocks for spam, use techniques to keep the window open, bring value with rich interaction. Specialized platforms like Easyping.me can help you with that for a decent cost.
- Success won’t be long to come!
Two more benefits of this hack:
- Imagine you have cold-prospected some Business pages via Messenger. They did not respond to you right away (one of the reasons is that actually there is an ocean of businesses with the Pages that almost never check their messages). However, on one day they saw your message and decided to find your profile and get in touch with you. So having yourself a business page will enable you to place a “Message me” button. Ordinary user profiles can’t do this. A tiny thing but still decreases the number of clicks for a customer to make.
- Even if you are working in the digital agency as an employee all your customers collected with “Your name” Business Page will remain with you. Not for the employer. And this is already a good pricey asset if you are a success-minded professional ;-)