Facebook Messenger has been around as a standalone app for sometime, but leveraging Facebook Messenger marketing is still a relative newcomer in social media marketing. After all, for many years after Facebook first launched even your friends had to go into an “inbox” to see the messages you’d sent them. Messages didn’t go onto your smartphone, or do anything other than generate an email from Facebook that you got a message. In other words, messaging on Facebook was originally like email. Now though, this has changed. You can use Facebook Messenger to communicate with people who aren’t even on the rest of Facebook! It’ a separate app on your phone or tablet, too. With these innovations, we marketers have a tool that we can use effectively to reach the masses, and Facebook Messenger bots allow us to automate and scale in a unique way, assuming we are using one of the Facebook Messenger management tools I will describe below.
Before we get to the list of tools, for those not so familiar with the topic, let’s go through some of the basics to help you better leverage these Facebook Messenger management tools.
What is Facebook Messenger marketing?
Facebook Messenger marketing is both an alternative method of content distribution and a great way to do customer service. That’s because, like with Twitter, Messenger allows you to interact with consumers in real time. Does a customer have a problem? If you set it up properly, they can message your profile on Facebook and get a response back. That could either be through a human employee or a chatbot. Either way, this is a very effective way of reaching out to customers.
Why is this form of marketing still relevant today?
Even though Facebook Messenger has matured as a form of communication, using it to market remains relevant. In fact, it can be argued that the medium as a whole is underutilized and from a marketing perspective, we are still in the early adoption stage. From a consumer perspective, however, Facebook Messenger is easy to use and can help increase customer satisfaction through near-instant gratification. Content distributed through Messenger also has a much higher open rate than email, and helps marketers learn more about individual users. This isn’t a medium we marketers can afford to ignore!
What’s the Difference Between Facebook Messenger Marketing Bots and Chatbots?
When most of us think about chatbots, our conception is one of those pop ups on various websites that send us an automated messages. Truth is, these are everywhere, and most of us will ignore those bots unless we want to communicate with a business. However, for those who are truly interested in certain products and services, chatbots are a great way to get basic answers to common questions without having to wait in line to get a “real human.” Let’s face it, waiting can be a huge pain sometimes, so these bots provide a valuable service by reducing waiting time.
Marketing bots are a little different. Sure, they can do many of the same things as traditional chatbots. For instance, they’re used on Facebook to great effect for customer service tasks. But Facebook Messenger marketing bots do more: You can use them to send marketing information to interested customers, gather useful information about your lead, and direct them to the right humans as necessary. For example, a marketing bot can send a useful piece of content to your lead. Or, they can determine that an angry customer needs to talk to a live person about a refund. Marketers have found the use of these devices highly useful in many situations. Best of all: they’re cheap to use.
The List: 12 Facebook Messenger marketing tools to try today.
Ready to give Facebook Messenger marketing a try? Want to “up your game” in this marketing modality? Here are some Facebook Messenger management tools that can help you achieve your goals.
Need an AI-based chatbot for your ecommerce or customer service tasks? ActiveChat is built for these types of chatbot usage. Developers say that building your chatbot is as easy as building with Lego blocks. If you’re trying to sell things on Facebook or do customer service through your company page, this is a good way to do it. Besides Facebook Messenger, ActiveChat bots work with Whatsapp and Twilio SMS for customer service. Ecommerce versions are compatible with Shopify and Woocommerce.
Pricing: limited free version, which doesn’t do ecommerce. Paid plans start at $9 per month, per bot, based on number of subscribers.
Like Sequel, Botsify makes bots with more personality than the typical machine. However, Botsify is primarily intended to build customer service bots. Botsify bots have the ability to handle more than one language. Another great feature is the ability of these bots to facilitate a seamless human takeover. If the bot doesn’t understand a customer question or can’t answer it, the bot will connect the conversation over to a real person as seamlessly as possible.
Besides Facebook Messenger, Botsify accommodates other platforms. There are bot versions available for Whatsapp, Slack, and other websites. In addition, there is an education version of Botsify, along with a checkbox plugin that allows users to subscribe to your content.
Pricing: After a 14-day free trial, you can choose a self-service plan for $50 per month, or a fully-managed plan at $300 per month. If you have over 30,000 users, you must choose fully-managed.
Want your customers to feel like they’re talking to a live human? ChatBot, which operates both as a drag-and-drop and open API chatbot development program, specializes in making their bots seem human. Even better, it’s easy to make a bot with their platform. These bots can even mimic human resources personnel to help recruit new workers, so if you’re running an ad campaign for recruitment, ChatBot has a great solution to help. You can use this to build a chatbot for your website, even if it isn’t WordPress-based. Bots can be used for Slack, Facebook Messenger, Livechat and Zapier. Lastly, the programs interface with CRM software and analytics.
Pricing: It’s free for 14 days, then starts at $50 per month for a single bot and limited chats. Prices go up from there.
Want to automate customer service? ChatFuel is the leading Facebook Messenger bot-builder. This program is great if you’re hoping to deliver personalized marketing messages and perform automated customer service tasks. ChatFuel is known for providing good customer support. Another feature of theirs is that they integrate well with other parts of Facebook, such as interacting with people who like or comment to Facebook ads. For this reason, several large companies use a ChatFuel bot for Messenger-based customer service.
As great as ChatFuel might be for Facebook Messenger, this is the only messaging platform it works with.
Pricing: ChatFuel does have a limited-feature, limited-follower service plan. As your business grows, paid plans start at $15 per month and up, depending on your subscriber count. Keep in mind that there’s also a deluxe paid plan, but pricing is on request.
If you want seamless integration with a CRM and live chat, Cliengo bots are a great option. That’s because Cliengo offers more than just a chatbot. Clients get a free CRM that helps gather sales leads from the results of customer chats. Something else to note: Cliengo is intended to do a lot more than just Facebook Messenger: it interfaces with over 1,000 outside applications. Talk about flexible!
Pricing: Cliengo offers an extremely limited free version. Then, plans start at $24 per month and $90 per month, depending on what features you want and your level of traffic.
For businesses that just need to replace web forms and reduce their reliance on human order-takers, collect.chat is an option. This super-simple chatbot application is intended primarily for collecting customer information and providing basic customer service functions when your employees aren’t available. From there, information gathered can be interfaced with a wide variety of other software and Web services. Naturally, that includes Facebook messenger and ad campaigns, so this is a very versatile tool. Nothing fancy here. You can even build the chatbot without coding or involving computer geeks.
Pricing: If you only have a handful of messages to send, it’s free. Paid plans are based on the features and number of monthly responses, starting at $24 per month, then increasing to $49 or $99.
For businesses that would like to accept payments from their chatbot, Flow XO delivers. Other distinctive features include the ability to show customers around your website, and being clever enough to make customers laugh. In addition, there are a wide variety of integrations supported, including CRM and email applications. Messaging app options include Facebook Messenger, Twilio SMS, Slack, Telegram and email.
Pricing: free for the first 500 interactions, then plans start at $19 per month.
For bot-based customer retargeting on Facebook and its subsidiaries, I AM POP is your go-to application. This application is specially designed for industries such as travel and entertainment. That’s because bots can be trained to send “thank you” and follow-up messages surrounding the purchase of services or digital products. It’s also designed to completely integrate with your advertising campaigns within the Facebook family: Messenger, Whatsapp and Instagram. And, these are the only social networks or messaging apps that you can use with I AM POP bots.
Pricing: Talk to 100 or fewer people every month for free. After that, the first paid tier is $29 per month for 5,000 users.
Since this company was started in 2015, the key to ManyChat’s business model has been the idea that you can create a chatbot without coding in five minutes. The platform also supports live human input. ManyChat makes this type of internet tool accessible to a wider number of business owners. It also facilitates both customer service and advertising uses.
Other platforms supported: ManyChat was originally built for Telegram messaging, then expanded to accommodate Facebook Messenger, which is now its main usage. According to their website, they can integrate with Paypal and Stripe for payments, Hubspot, MailChimp, Shopify, Google Sheets, and many more.
Pricing: There’s a limited-feature free version, then paid plans are priced based on the number of subscribers with a $10 monthly minimum. Fees also apply for emails sent to customers.
Need an all-in-one chatbot and SMS solution? MobileMonkey was designed to help marketers and business owners create chatbots for all the messaging platforms currently available. To that end, you can use this app in WeChat, Facebook Messenger, custom website-based chatbots, and a wide variety of other locations. There’s no question but that this is a very versatile choice for your bot needs.
But the company doesn’t stop there: MobileMonkey even supports SMS communications with your own SMS phone number. They also integrate with most email marketing applications, CRMs, and Web payment providers.
Pricing: A limited-feature free plan is available. After that, the least expensive plan (supports 2,000 followers) costs $19 per month. Need help building your bots? Consulting and training are available for an extra charge.
For agencies, Quriobot has a special skill: allowing you to make the bots for your clients, and control multiple client’s bots through a single account. Another feature is the ability of the bot to start a conversation with your client in one place, then move it to the chat platform of their choice. Analytics and “behavior” reports are offered, as well. Quriobot can work within your own website, plus Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, Slack, Skype, and other platforms. Email integration is also included.
Pricing: limited-feature free version, then paid plans start at around $21 monthly (19 Euros) on up, depending on number of chats required. Agency plans have different rates.
Want something with personality? Sequel was the original bot-making service to allow users to design a bot with their own personality, beating Google. Currently, Sequel allows users to add emojis, video, GIF’s, and other add-ons. Sequel bots have found a wide variety of uses: publishing content by broadcasting it to interested users, answering fan questions on behalf of influencers or celebrities, and even playing games. Finally, Sequel bots are compatible with Facebook Messenger, Skype, Slack, Viber, Twilio, Kik and Telegram. That’s a lot of platforms. Price: Sequel says you can get started for free. I didn’t find any other pricing information.
What’s your favorite Facebook Messenger management tool? Let me know below.