Facebook has long been known for its ability to reach out to the masses. It has managed to garner more than 2.4 billion active users in the second quarter of 2019, capturing 130 million users in Indonesia alone. Indonesian Facebook users form the third highest number of users in the world. The social network giant has managed to extend its reach beyond the platform itself, having made its mark by now owning subsidiary products such as Instagram and its proprietary Facebook Messenger.
It is not surprising then that Facebook has revolutionised how businesses and customers transact especially with the advent of chatbots by the company in 2016 to its Messenger platform. Chatbots, with its Artificial Intelligence (AI) affordances coupled with natural language processing, have been a game-changing addition to the development of communication tools for marketing products and services. In this article, we highlight several brands and companies who have leveraged on Facebook Messenger as a marketing platform to promote their products.
We will be categorizing these stories into three types of uses cases:
- Cases A: Direct Sales through Messenger – How messenger is used for marketing products and services
- Cases B: Increasing brand awareness and engagement, which indirectly lead to sales of products and services
- Cases C: Using Messenger for customer engagement, which then also encourages customers to place an order via Messenger
Cases A: Direct Sales Through Messenger
The online transportation giant, Uber, is already integrated on Facebook Messenger. Its integrated services include pick-up status as well as receipts, which can be accessed from your Messenger chat screen. In addition, determining the location is also done directly through Messenger by utilizing common features such as location sharing. Besides being able to order an Uber car through personal chat on Messenger, Uber can also be ordered through the group chat window. Uber has even introduced a feature called “Share ETA”, which is certainly very helpful for you to track your friend’s or a family member’s position.
SnapTravel, just like in its tagline, makes travel bookings a simple and magical experience on Facebook Messenger. Utilizing a combination of Messenger and bots, it offers solutions to search hotels according to your preferences. After searching for hotels, you will then be assisted to book and make payments, even until you finally check out of the hotel. The bot also functions like a hotel front desk, which you can ask about hotel facilities, WiFi availability and breakfast. Just through this strategy, SnapTravel has managed to earn a30% increase in the number of users, making its presence on Facebook one of the most effective channels.
HealthTap is an online doctor application designed for daily health-related consultation, tips, and information on diseases. More than 100,000 doctors from 141 different specialties are ready to answer your questions. Besides, customers also can choose to consult via video, chat or audio visits. HealthTap Facebook Messenger uses a chatbot which operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This is also an advantage where users can receive answers to simple questions instantly while complex questions can be answered by doctors. As a result of their presence in facebook, they just get 31.81% increase in downloads.
While Dominos Pizza had started the first trend of allowing customers to order their pizzas via Messenger, Pizza Hut Australia upped the game by releasing its Pizza Hut Au Instant Ordering Facebook page. By using Messenger, customers can order pizza either for takeaway or delivery. If you prefer to take away, it will automatically order from the closest store to your location. Without having to leave the Messenger application even when determining your location, the map will appear on your Facebook Messenger web display and is extremely helpful for users to track their delivery.
Messenger has also been used by event organizers to sell tickets, which was what Brighton Boundary did exactly. To achieve the targeted number of ticket sales, Brighton Boundary turned its Facebook page into a Messenger audience. They then displayed information such as the line-up of performers and the number of tickets available for their events. They also did a limited presale at a low price through this page, which they sent directly to their subscriber channel via Messenger and made 500 tickets run out in just three minutes. 1500 tickets were sold just on the first day. In terms of marketing, this is very effective with messages open rate by the receiver reached 96% which 70% among them led to ticket purchases.
Cases B: Improving Engagement & Brand Awareness
The following cases show how engaging loyal customers and increasing brand awareness to new customers can increase the profitability of a business.
Whole Foods Market
In 2016, the Whole Foods Market launched the Whole Foods Messenger bot. Through this bot, you can search for recipes, ingredients, and inspiration all in the Messenger application itself. Not only that, you can also find culinary-related topics that interest you. Apart from just selling items, Whole Foods succeeded in increasing engagement and interacting with customers in different ways which brings new and loyal customers back again and again
Wall Street Journal
The online media has long disrupted the sales of physical newspapers. Realising this, the renowned news media company Wall Street Journal (WSJ) has leveraged on chatbots to bring the news onto their Facebook Messenger account. Once you are logged on to their Messenger channel, you will find the following functions available to suit your news consumption habits:
- Breaking News Alerts
- Daily News Digest
- Company News Alerts
- Portfolio Alerts
- Link to Subscribe to the WSJ Podcast
By sending alerts, WSJ encourages its readers to forward the news they read to both friends and colleagues. For portfolio and stock news, you can manually add the name of the company you want to hear from.
Jordan by Nike
In 2018, the Air Jordan brand from Nike presented the Nike Air Jordan Facebook Messenger. The Air Jordan Messenger marketing campaign was designed to attract the attention of Jumpman fans. With more than 9 million followers on its Facebook page, this chat window will appear when users visit its Facebook page. It is also assisted by bots who send regular offers through frequent notifications, such as the weekly ones. It turns out that Nike’s Messenger marketing campaign resulted in an open rate of 87%, which was four times better than what Nike normally sees from their email campaign.
Golden State Warriors
The Golden State Warriors, one of the clubs owned by the NBA, launched a Messenger equipped with AI that allows fans to receive updates about the team. The Golden State Warriors interacted with fans on Messenger to increase their brand awareness. There are also bots that complement the Messenger, allowing fans to check statistics for the game currently played or from the past, following player statistics and, of course, helping fans buy their favorite Golden State Warriors merchandise.
Cases C: Engaging Customers While Encouraging Sales
These use cases highlight how customers can be constantly engaged as well as promote sales of products and services; a combination of A and B.
After launching a bot on Facebook Messenger, Sephora used its Facebook page as an advertisement media. When the user clicks, it will go directly to Sephora’s Facebook Messenger Live Chat. Assistant Sephora then welcomes you and gives you a series of services to choose from; try outlooks, order makeup, and skincare services or give store feedback. The Sephora Assistant is equipped with functions that greatly overcome the buyers’ turmoil of wanting to know how your face will turn out. Sephora created a function that allows you to scan faces to virtually see the results of using a product on your face. After you click the “Buy Now” button, you will be automatically directed to the product page on the Sephora website. This method has happened to be so effective that there was an increase of 11% in terms of bookings compared to other channels and the average user spent more than $50 on bookings.
Ralph, a chatbot, acts as Lego’s virtual assistant to help customers choose a gift for their little ones. Ralph will ask the customer questions before giving recommendations on a suitable gift. Ralph will also enquire the customer’s origins, his or her budget and other information about the gift’s recipients. Besides providing recommendations, the data Ralph receives will help Lego to extract information needed to build a buyer profile for Facebook Messenger users. This will make it easier for them in planning their promotional marketing materials especially during festive seasons. As a result of this campaign, Lego obtained 3.4 times higher profit on “Click to Messenger” ads compared to their regular Facebook ads. Costs were also 71% lower per purchase and this increased the value of purchases by 1.9 times.
HiSmile is a teeth whitening product which started a campaign on Messenger to retain customer loyalty. Its aim is to attract customers who have liked its Facebook page to purchase its products again. To ensure this, HiSmile personalizes every message with the customer’s name and includes a beautiful picture and a discount code with a limited time validity to create a sense of urgency for these potential returning customers. Messages were sent out on weekends or nearing the dates of special events. Before the discount code period ended, Hi Smile would also send a reminder message. With this method, the cost per purchase was 11 times lower compared to other channels, with 9.92 times return on ad expenditure and, of course, with a Clickthrough rate that increased by 21 times more than other platforms.
It is clear that with a well thought through strategy, leveraging on the capabilities of using Facebook Messenger for sales and marketing of brands and products can be immense and bring tremendous profit and brand recognition. Qiscus understands how chatbots and Facebook Messenger can be a valuable addition to your branding and retaining your customers. If you are interested in finding out how you can leverage on Facebook in your marketing and sales strategies, chat with us at Qiscus, a leader in the chat and call industry. Simply email us here: [email protected]