Introducing Messenger Platform 1.3

For the first time ever, businesses can drive targeted audiences to Messenger and keep them engaged with new tools.

Here’s another update on the Messenger Platform. It’s been six months since launch and this feels like a good time to reflect on what we have have learned and the progress we’ve made collectively.

Three areas are starting to emerge as early success stories on the Platform:

  • Bots that complete a business objective better than a mobile website:
    • Brand awareness and engagement (Absolut, Tommy Hilfiger, Burberry, Activision’s Call of Duty);
    • New experiences as an onramp (‘s Meetic, Icon8);
    • Extension of their current app experience (American Express);
  • Subscription services (The Score, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, Yahoo! Weather, TechCrunch and The Weather Channel);
  • Customer service (Rogers Wireless, Globe, L’Oreal and Sprint).

We’ve been partnering with the community building experiences for Messenger and things are starting to take shape!

Check out some of the experiences here:

Since the opening of our Platform in April, many companies have started building solutions for businesses and brands to enable them to create their Messenger experience. This ranges from partners that help with customer service such as Salesforce and ZenDesk, along with Sprinklr, Lithium, and Conversocial to partners like Pullstring, & Chatfuel helping build compelling on ramp experiences. Together partners have provided us an essential step to building a thriving ecosystem on Messenger, and we feel very lucky to have such a great growing roster to share this ride with.

Our work with our now 34,000-strong developer community is accelerating our learnings. These have informed the new capabilities we’re launching today.

New Ad Formats and Tools

One of the most important requests we received from developers and businesses building on the Messenger Platform is the ability to promote their experience. This is why I’m thrilled to announce the roll-out of News Feed ads that open Messenger conversations.

This is exciting news because now everyone can combine the powerful audience targeting and selection capabilities of ads on News Feed, and the identity and canonical nature of Messenger conversations. We believe that as examples such as Absolut Vodka, Tommy Hilfiger and Activision have shown, directing people from a News Feed ad to Messenger can lead to increased conversions.

But driving people to a Messenger conversation isn’t enough. We want to make sure businesses and brands building for the Platform can manage the entire lifecycle of their customers. This is where sponsored messages come in. Sponsored messages enables businesses that have threads opened with their customers to reengage them in a very efficient way. Of course, people using Messenger shouldn’t worry about getting spammed, because the starting principles still remain: businesses can’t send a sponsored message to threads that weren’t previously opened by their customers or prospects, and users have full control to block messages or people/businesses they no longer want to hear from.

We believe that the combination of driving people from News Feed into a Messenger experience, and having an additional opportunity to re-engage with sponsored messages is a game changer, and we’re thrilled to roll this experience out starting this week.

On top of new ways to get distribution and engagement, we’re excited to announce Messenger Platform Version 1.3

This release includes some crucial features that help build better experiences, but also give developers more ways to drive people to their bots for Messenger:

  • Reference Params for Referral Links: Developers can now add reference params to their vanity link, allowing them to determine where their bot traffic is coming from.
  • Deep Linking for Referral Links: With the new reference param, developers can also deep link someone into a particular bot experience. For example, if someone clicks on the link from a particular section within a website, a developer can now send a message that references that section.
  • List Templates: Developers can now leverage new list templates, which showcase information in an easy-to-digest list. You can add a CTA or image to items in the list to customize the look and feel of the template.
  • Pre-Checked Plugin: Developers can now add a checkbox plugin to easily allow customers to opt into a Messenger conversation with their business.
  • Improvements to Search Results: We’re also releasing improvements to our bot search results, which will make it easier for people to find and discover bots.
  • More here.

To conclude, we know how important it is to bring people to the right content, in the right way, that feels just right to them – and we’re excited to see the Messenger Platform continue to thrive for businesses and developers alike. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

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