Use Instagram Direct Messages successfully for customer service
Using Instagram direct messaging for customer service is an important step for direct customer engagement, and can give your business that crucial social media boost.
Short and to the point: Instagram direct messages for customer service
- Claim: The ideal channel to build a loyal community.
- User numbers worldwide: 1.2 billion active monthly users (as of May 2021).
- Target group: Young adults. Most users are between 25 and 34 years old.
- Special fact: Customers want and seek direct contact with companies.
- Advantages: Direct messages are very versatile, promote trust and generate leads.
- Disadvantages: For large accounts, responding to Instagram direct messages becomes a challenge for customer service
In this post, you’ll learn:
- Things to know about Instagram messaging for customer service
- Instagram direct messaging for customer service: Here’s how your business can benefit from it
- Software for Instagram messaging? Messenger API support is coming!
- Conclusion on the potential of Instagram direct messages for customer service
With one billion users a month, 90 percent of whom follow at least one company, Instagram is undoubtedly one of the most important social media channels for businesses. This is also because users find it overwhelmingly positive when businesses are active on Instagram.
In a Facebook survey, 78 percent of users said they perceive brands as popular when they see them on Instagram. 74 percent find brands particularly relevant as a result, and 72 percent think brands that have a presence on Instagram are more engaged in community building.
Engaging with users on Instagram is, therefore, an important element for companies’ customer service. After all, a positive experience with a company on social media can not only improve its image but also increase customer loyalty and convince new customers of its brand.
Crucial to this is communication, and not just posting content for the community, but also direct exchange with the community. Instagram Direct messaging in particular can be crucial for customer service.
This is due in part to the fact that users on Instagram actively seek out exchanges with companies and even actively contact brands themselves via direct messages.
According to Instagram, around 150 million people use Instagram direct messages to communicate with a company at least once a month.
For companies, this in turn is an opportunity to seek direct customer exchange in the protected space of private messages.
For those who have not noticed the launch of Threads at alls not: Don’t worry, most haven’t. Threads is a messaging app separate from Instagram Direct messaging that allows you to communicate with your closest friends (based on Instagram’s close friends list).
The only difference from the Instagram Direct inbox is the status updates that Threads displays. The app automatically creates these based on location. For example, the status updates show something like “at home,” “moving,” or “low battery.” While this feature can be turned off and users can also manually set a status, this is the only feature that still differentiates Threads from Instagram Direct Messaging.
A major advantage of Instagram Direct Messaging for customer service is that it is very versatile and offers companies many different communication options accordingly.
Instagram Direct Messaging is comparable to other messenger services in which two or more users send private messages to each other.
In addition to classic text content, these messages can also contain photos or videos in order to send users important information or entertaining content, such as in a Messenger newsletter.
However, it is also possible to send entertaining GIFs as well as your own Instagram posts or stories via direct message. Posts from other users, such as collaborators or brand ambassadors, can also be sent via direct messages on Instagram.
But that’s not all. Instagram Direct messaging also allows communication via voice messages or video calls, and group chats are also possible. Another special feature is the ability to send location pins so users can find a store or event, for example.
Thus, Instagram direct messages open up many possibilities for companies’ customer service.
In fact, it is foreseeable that direct communication with the community on Instagram will become more important for companies in the future. This is because Instagram has expanded its social commerce functions over the past year, especially with the introduction of Instagram stores or functions such as “Shoppable Products”.
It is, therefore, to be expected that more users will also contact companies on the platform where they became aware of a product or bought it. Individual product advice and service (“conversational commerce“) can be offered in direct conversation.
Stories, reels and feedpost inspire + Instagram Direct messaging informs and converts!
While companies may hesitate to personally address users via direct messages on other social media channels, on Instagram this is a form of communication that many followers desire and even initiate themselves.
In fact, there are many different reasons why users write directly to a company on Instagram. These range from positive feedback to service requests to job searches, as a survey by the consulting firm Sprout shows.
This makes Instagram Direct messaging an ideal channel to seek, expand and promote direct customer exchanges.
Problems with a product or service are one of the most common reasons why users write to companies on social media channels via messaging. This is exactly where brands can stand out from the competition by responding quickly and helpfully.
⏰ As with all customer issues, responding quickly to customer service via Instagram Direct messages is key. Depending on the company and the number of inquiries, it may be worthwhile to set up a special service department or even rely on chatbots – of course with a human take-over option – to be able to resolve recurring inquiries more quickly.
It is, therefore, all the more important to be well-positioned as a company here and to solve customer problems efficiently. Surveys show that customers who have had a positive experience with a company’s customer service have a more positive brand image and are more likely to recommend the brand to others.
But Instagram Direct messaging is not only effective for customer service, it can also generate sales as well as new leads.
This can be done, for example, by sending promotional material, such as a call via direct message to participate in a raffle or by sending exclusive coupon codes. Companies can thus generate new leads and sales via messaging.
The customers who feel a special connection to a company become loyal and returning customers. And it is the interactive exchange with these customers, especially via direct messenger communication, that promotes this trust-building.
For example, companies can use direct messaging on Instagram to get feedback from customers, launch surveys on new product ideas, or even ask customers directly what offerings they would like to see from the company in the future.
Back on October 19, 2020, Facebook said, “Today we’re excited to announce several updates to the Messenger API to support Instagram messaging. This will give businesses new tools to comprehensively manage their customer communications on Instagram.”
👉 At MessengerPeople, we’re excited to offer Instagram Direct messaging as another messaging channel since June 2dn 21. The updates to the Messenger API for Instagram are part of our efforts to provide businesses easier access to their customers across all their touchpoints.
Instagram direct messaging is a worthwhile channel for customer service.
Not only does it provide companies a variety of ways to communicate with customers, but it also allows them to build a loyal community, help improve the company’s image, and can also generate new leads and more sales.
With the expansion of e-commerce functions on Instagram, it is also expected that customer service on Instagram will become even more important for companies in the future.
You are interested in using Messaging for your business?! Get our Messenger Playbook with over 10 Best Cases!