News: Sponsored Ads Come to Facebook Messenger
Last week Facebook launched its chatbot platform for Messenger, allowing businesses to connect with users through the Facebook messaging app. That means automated customer service, content delivery and interactive experiences can now all take place within Messenger – it’s a question of how far developers can take the platform now.
Sponsored ads bringing in the money
The other big question on everyone’s mind was how does Facebook plan to monetize these chatbots? And the unsurprising answer is that sponsored ads will be coming to Facebook Messenger as part of the deal.
You may have already seen some of these ads during the testing stages. Sponsored ads basically appear like any normal conversation in Messenger:
— Michael Lin (@linmichaelj) April 1, 2016
These sponsored messages are added to the existing “Click To Message” ads that now appear in the News Feed. Both can pull users into an automated conversation with Facebook chatbots.
Facebook finally monetises Messenger
As Josh Constine put it in his article for TechCrunch, “Imagine if instead of clicking an ad and then having to guide yourself around an unfamiliar e-commerce website, you could just tell the bot your preferences and it could show you relevant products you might want to buy.”
The downside, as with many of the new features coming out of Facebook is it keeps users locked into the apps and potentially away from your website. If sales are quicker and increase by quantity, thanks to these chatbots, nobody will be complaining. The danger is you could miss out on secondary or follow-up conversions if that traffic spends less or no time on your site. So keep that in mind if you delve into Facebook chatbots. It might not be a problem, but it’s something you should be aware of.
More importantly for Facebook, though, is that it’s finally found a way to monetise its Messenger app, which is estimated to have 900 million users. Now it has the challenge of doing so without pissing too many of them off.