17 Oct Facebook’s New Feature for Business: Response Assistant
Without much fanfare Facebook has revamped the “instant response” feature it brought out this time last year. With some new features and a new name to boot, lets dive into what Response Assistant can do and how it can be seriously helpful managing your business page.
First of all you can access these new features by heading to your business page and then hitting the Settings at the top of the page. Then select the Messaging tab and you will be greeted but Messaging Setting.
You will see General Settings and then underneath… Response Assistant – bingo! Now there are several options under Response Assistant, we will go through each of them in turn
This option is fairly self explanatory and is best left to automatic so you can show of your businesses attention to customer service. Should you however wish to set a lower level of expectation amongst customers they contact you to reduce pressure and workload then picking another option from the list may be of benefit to you.
Don’t see this screen? If you have been a little bit tardy with your message responses then Facebook will show you a greyed out notitifiction of the following, time to get replying!
Enable Away Messages
Facebook defines this option as “Create a message that’s automatically sent to people when your status is set to “Away” or it’s outside your business hours’. This can be incredibly useful to make sure your customers still feel attended too, even when they decide to get in touch in the wee hours of the morning or during peak times of the day when you are busy attending to the day to day needs of your business.
Thanking the customer for making the effort to get in contact is important but also let them know when they can expect a reply from you, i.e. during business hours or in the next 24 hours etc. Their expectations will then be managed in a way that is achievable for you provide. Highly recommended!
Send Instant Replies to anyone who messages your page
This feature is defined as “Instant Replies are a good way to let people know that you’ll respond soon” is similar to away messages but on a more permanent basis. Every time you get a message to your page a response goes out and while this might seem like a handy tool it can leave customers feeling like just a number and create laziness in providing prompt responses to customers.
Would only recommend use if you are going away on holiday or if you no longer use that particular Facebook page and need to re-direct people.
Show a Messenger Greeting
Facebook describes this feature as “Create a greeting that people will see the first time they open a conversation with you on Messenger”, what a great way to entice people to contact you! All business owners should be utilising this feature to make customers feel welcomed and convinced that contacting you is a fantastic idea.
Make sure your automated responses don’t sound robotic, put some personal touches in and use your natural language. The fact that you (the business owner) are taking the time to reply to these messages is an advantage, it creates the sense that you provide personalise, high quality customer service to your customers. All that is lost if the customer feels like they are talking to a machine from the Terminator.
So why is setting up Response Assistant important for you businesses page? In this fast pace world customers are more often than not expecting speedy responses to their enquiries, it has almost become an expectation no days.
However it is also in your own best interests to respond to your customers promptly, studies have shown that waiting a couple of minutes can drastically decrease the potential of making a sale, you can read more here. So while it may seem that Facebook is trying to push for businesses owners to be constantly on their platform, which would be at least some of motivation of these changes, they are trying to help small businesses win more customers too.
If your business needs assistance setting up Response Assistant or any other feature of Facebook or social media marketing please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us.