How to Promote to Messenger Subscribers Outside of 24 Hour Window

Hey Facebook marketer, Brad here from MSGHero.

If we were to award prizes for the most common (and confusing) questions being asked about Messenger marketing here at MSGHero, this would win first prize.

“How do we promote to our Messenger subscribers without breaking terms of service?”

What’s the use in building a Messenger subscriber list if you can’t sell to them, right?

I hear ya.

The problem is that Facebook limits how we use Messenger to run promotions to our audiences. It’s an amazing platform for reaching audiences, but how quickly do you think it would go down in flames if everyone starting using it to send “buy my stuff now” messages?

The way they limit this is by placing a 24-hour window on promotions. This means you can only send promotional messages to people who have interacted with your Facebook page inside of Messenger in the past 24 hours.

This is an ongoing 24-hour window. So if someone responds to a question you broadcast to them, they will be triggered back into the 24-hour promotional window.

Other messages (non-promotional) can be sent freely.

So the real problem people seem to have is they don’t know how they can promote and monetize their Messenger subscriber lists OUTSIDE of the 24 hour window.

Our Secret Sauce

That’s exactly what I’m going to be showing you how to do today. This guide is going to show you how to use a very unique strategy to monetize your subscribers outside of the 24-hour window (while of course complying with Facebook’s Messenger policies)

The first step, is to start growing your Messenger subscriber list. We’re obviously a little biased although our platform, MSGHero, is the go-to platform marketers. This is because we allow you to track leads, sales and ROI down to the exact message in your messaging funnel. No other platform offers these metrics.

So the first step is to setup your Messenger chat bot. (Click here to start a free trial for MSGHero).

Secondly, you’ll want to grow your subscriber list so that you have people to promote to. There are so many ways to do this using growth tools:

  • Comment-response campaigns
  • Messenger ads
  • Button widgets on your website
  • Customer chat widgets on your website
  • Reference URL campaigns
  • & more

Once you’ve got a decent subscriber list, it’s time to test it out!

Conventional Promotion Strategy

I have to write about this first, because this is how most people are currently using Messenger to promote to their subscribers.

All third-party Messenger platforms allow you to promote to your subscribers from within their apps. You simply insert your messages, select that you are sending a promotional message and they automatically segment your subscriber list into people who are inside of the 24-hour window and voila. Your broadcast is sent.

What about the other 90% of your subscriber list that wasn’t reached? Did you waste your time and money building this list?

The answer is a hard NO. No you didn’t 🙂

Unconventional Promotion Strategy

The way you can promote to 100% of your subscriber list outside of the 24-hour window is by using Messenger the way Facebook wants you to. The way they’re going to reward you for using it.

…and somehow, it’s slipped under the radar for most marketers.

The way Facebook wants you to use Messenger is for engaging with your audience. 80-90% open rates and 5x CTR’s are exciting and thrilling metrics when used for promotions.

However, those numbers won’t stay that high if you’re constantly blasting promotional messages (who would’ve thought?).

To keep those numbers high (and stay on Facebook’s good side) you need to send good, engaging and valuable CONTENT to your subscribers.

What is good content?

This could be it’s own blog post, but this depends on your niche and business model. For our business, for example, it could be a blog post like this. Or a video showcasing a new strategy. Maybe a case study. Here’s a summary to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Short tips
  • New strategies
  • Case studies
  • Interviews/podcasts
  • Content pieces (blog posts)
  • YouTube videos

Anything that is relevant to your niche and provides value to your subscriber. This is going to keep your open rate and CTR healthy as well as keep Facebook happy.

How do promote outside the 24-hour window?

The hot topic of this blog post. Without further ado, let’s jump into it:

 

Step 1: Send an engaging broadcast to your subscribers

As mentioned earlier, you need to send a broadcast to your subscribers. A broadcast is a message that you can send directly to the main Facebook inbox of all your Messenger subscribers. All Messenger platforms allow you to do this. (Click here to start a free trial for MSGHero).

This message should contain the good, valuable and engaging content we spoke about above.

 

Step 2: Pixel that traffic

This is a key step, and one that will differentiate you from your competitors. In fact, I’d say it’s the single most important step when doing Messenger marketing (if your goal is to monetize). Everything you do prior to this step is groundwork (creating a chatbot, growing the subscriber list, sending content etc).

This is where things get fun. This is where you can make money.

You need to make sure your pixel is placed on the page where you are sending your subscribers to. For example, if you were sending a case study to your subscriber, you’d want to make sure you have a Facebook pixel placed on that page.

How to find your Facebook pixel:

  • Copy this code to your clipboard and place it in the <head> tags on your page.
  • To test if the pixel is working correctly, we highly recommend installing the “Facebook Pixel Helper” chrome extension.

Once your pixel is placed, Facebook will be able to track everyone who has landed on your page.

This brings us to step 3.

 

Step 3: Create custom audiences

I’ll break this section up into 2 different steps because there are two different types of custom audiences you can create to engage with your Messenger subscribers. We’ll refer to the first as “pixel traffic” and the second as “engagement traffic”.

Firstly, what is a custom audience? A custom audience is a segmented group of people. For example, we can set up a custom audience for people who have visited our website, who have purchased from us, who have refunded purchases, who have cancelled subscriptions, who have engaged with our Pages etc etc…)

The custom audience we’re creating in this instance will keep track of the people who trigger the pixel on our website (it’s going to keep a record of everyone who visits our pages).

Custom audiences can be created for different actions (website visitors, people who engage with our Facebook page, people who purchase from us, etc etc).

So why do we want to create custom audiences? Custom audiences allow us to segment our Messenger subscribers into highly engaged audiences that we can promote to.

Basically, we’re spreading out the ways through which we can reach our audience, using content as the backbone.

People who regularly consume and like our content (via Messenger) are added to a custom audience and those people (warm traffic) are then promoted to.

Now we have these people inside Messenger AND within a custom audience. From there, we have an amazing opportunity for omnipresence on Facebook in the form of Messenger presence as well as paid advertising presence.

 

  • Pixel Traffic

Now that we’ve placed our Facebook pixel on our website (or any page where we will be sending our Messenger subscribers to from our messaging funnels and broadcasts), we need to create a custom audience.

Firstly, go to: https://www.facebook.com/ads/manager/audiences/manage/

Then, you’ll want to click on “Create Audience” in the top left corner.

Select “Website Traffic” from the pop-up.

Next, you’ll want to click on the “All website visitors” drop-down menu and select “People who visit specific web pages” as your criteria. From here you can specify a timeframe going back up to 180 days (how long you want Facebook to keep this person in your custom audience after they have viewed your page).

Enter your page’s URL into the field.

Lastly, insert a name for your audience (for personal reference) and click on “Create Audience”.

That’s it.

Now, Facebook will track and add anyone who visits the website URL you specified in your setup into this custom audience. Remember, this URL must be where you are sending people from your Facebook Messenger messages.

 

  • Engagement Traffic

The second type of custom audience we’re going to set up is an “engagement” custom audience.

Firstly, go to: https://www.facebook.com/ads/manager/audiences/manage/

Then, you’ll want to click on “Create Audience” in the top left corner.

Select “Engagement” from the pop-up.

Select “Facebook Page” as your option from the pop-up.

Next you’ll want to click the drop-down menu of “Everyone who engaged with your Page” and select “People who sent a message to your Page”. From here, you can specify a timeframe going back up to 365 days (how long you want Facebook to keep this person in your custom audience after they have sent your Facebook page a message).

Lastly, insert a name for your audience (for personal reference) and click on “Create Audience”.

 All done! 🙂

Now Facebook will track anyone who sends your Facebook page a message (AKA your Messenger subscribers) and add them to this custom audience for you.

 

Step 4: Run retargeting ads 

This is where the real power of this strategy comes to light and where everything comes full circle and starts to make sense.

Now that we have our Messenger subscribers (and people who click through our Messenger messages) in our custom audiences, this is another medium through which we can reach them!

This is the part of the process where we are able to sell to our Messenger subscribers outside of the 24-hour window.

So whatever it is you are selling, whether it be a membership, SaaS platform, info product, consulting or anything else – this is where we sell it in the form of a retargeting advertisement.

Now, don’t freak out.

This is the cheapest traffic your money can possibly buy, with the highest ROI possible.

Remember, we’re not advertising to COLD traffic who know nothing about our brand/product/service.

These people in our custom audiences (whom we will retarget) know our brand, know our product/service, have interacted with our Messenger chatbot and have received our content via Messenger broadcasts.

They are highly-engaged and this makes the sale so much easier (and the ad costs so much cheaper).

Why are the ads so much cheaper? Well instead of being in a cold traffic bidding war for prime ad placement real estate with competitors (a general audience), you’re running ads to a smaller, engaged audience.

This means your ad costs are super low.

The beauty of this is that we don’t even NEED a big audience to see a large ROI. We pay next-to-nothing for ads, see a high ROI and can continue investing in growing our chatbot and the rest of the process is automated for us (once set up). 🙂

Here’s how to set up your retargeting ads:

Firstly, go to: https://www.facebook.com/adsmanager/creation

Now you want to create an ad with either a “Traffic” or “Conversions” marketing objective.

Next, you’ll want to name your ad and click through to the next step.

Facebook will direct you to your ad set up and here is where you can set your ad options.

The main thing that I’m going to show you is where you can find the custom audiences you created (remember, what don’t want to target cold audiences, we’re here to target our Messenger subscribers). In other words, we’re setting the audience that will see our retargeting ad for our product/service we are selling.

Scroll down to “Audience” and click inside the “Custom Audience” field as shown below.

When you click inside this field, your list of custom audiences will automatically show up below the field.

Simply select your created custom audience and Facebook will know to show this ad to these people.

Continue setting up your ad to sell your product or service (or anything else) as you usually would.

 

Step 5: Analyze results

As with any strategy, it’s important to oversee your results and adjust/tweak to see if you can improve conversions. Set up split-tests of your retargeting ads and monitor which ones are performing the best!

This is where the two different custom audiences come in handy. You can split-test your ad targeting between the two custom audience types and see which one converts better.

 

Step 6: Scale

Once you’re seeing a healthy positive ROI, the next logical step will be to continue growing. There are two ways you can scale this strategy.

The first strategy would be using lookalike audiences. A lookalike audience is a feature Facebook offers where they’ll create a ‘lookalike’ audience of your existing custom audience. Basically, they search and detect people who are similar to people in your custom audience and insert them into what they call a “lookalike audience”.

This will help you scale because you now have a bigger audience to target with your ads!

The second strategy would be to increase the growth of your messenger bot. This can be done using any of the several MSGHero growth tools included in your account (click here to start a free trial for MSGHero).

Everything after the point of acquiring a new Messenger subscriber is automated. Powerful, right?

Once setup, all you need to do is focus on Messenger subscriber growth and the rest acts as a sales funnel (custom audiences are automatically synced, retargeting ads are automatically served to these audiences, sales come in etc).

Summary (TLDR;)

Step 1: Send an engaging broadcast to your subscribers

Step 2: Pixel that traffic

Step 3: Create custom audiences

Step 4: Run retargeting ads

Step 5: Analyze results

Step 6: Scale

 

Use-Case: Messenger Sales Funnel?

I hope you’ve enjoyed this guide so far, but we’re not done quite yet!

You see, this essentially operates as a sales funnel.

Bear with me:

  • You build a Messenger chat bot using any platform (MSGHero, for example)
  • You grow your subscribers with the platform’s growth tools
  • You send engaging, content-fueled broadcasts to engage subscribers
  • Custom audiences (once setup) grow automatically as part of your sales funnel
  • Retargeting ads automatically served to your highly engaged, warm subscribers (super cheap traffic)
  • Sales come in 🙂

See how it acts as an automated funnel? Keep pouring in subscribers, and the rest is automated.

All that’s left to do is to keep oiling the machine.

This is one of the more creative strategies when it comes to Messenger Marketing in our opinion and one of the best ways to use a chatbot to grow your business while staying compliant.

Have any questions or insights to share? Feel free to comment below 🙂

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