In the digital age, we’re used to instant results – instant coffee, instant online purchases, and with the Internet at our fingertips… instant answers. Likewise, fans of your business on Facebook expect nearly instant responses when sending you a private message. But before you speedily type out that reply, there are a few key ideas to consider.
Beware of Spam
Before opening all messages, notice the user’s name. If the name reads “Facebook user,” do not open the message. Facebook’s preview of the message from this type of user should show you what looks like normal text, but if you open the message, you’ll often see no text there at all. This is a sign of a spammer and can possibly risk exposing you to information hacking. Mark the message as spam and avoid opening the message.
If you do find a credible user to respond to, it’s a good idea to click the link on their profile name to quickly view their Facebook profile and learn where they are based and what their general interests are. Understanding your fans can teach you not only who you are speaking with on a personal level, but also how you should respond to them. Some accounts may appear to have a normal name but can reveal themselves to be fake accounts upon checking the nature of their Facebook profile.
Maintain Your Brand’s Voice and Values
Depending on the content of the message – a question about your brand’s products, a customer complaint, praise or a desired collaboration – your response can vary. It’s important to stay true to your brand’s core voice and values. Make template responses to different types of messages, but sew into each message threads that reveal your brand’s authentic voice. Use mottos or expressions representative of your brand in your message templates. Sending messages that are professional and personalized to your brand will enforce your brand’s credibility.
Response Rate and Response Time Matter
Your Facebook response rate and response time can build a public reputation for your brand. Develop a scheduled time of the day when you will respond to Facebook messages. Checking them daily is highly recommended, and if you can schedule a second time in the day when you check back and respond again, you will increase your response rate.
Once you reach a response rate of 90% and a median response time of 5 minutes within a 7 day period, Facebook awards you with “Very responsive to messages” badge. Don’t worry if you do not yet have the badge, only people who manage your business page can see the statistics of your message response rate and response time. Once you do receive the badge, it becomes public. This tool builds credibility for your brand and increases trust in your fans.
Keeping the door open for communication with your fans is important, and with Facebook private messaging you can easily answer their questions. You can also read about how to contact and respond to a user privately who commented on your Facebook publically.
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