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Facebook says instant messaging an emerging tool for transactions

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FACEBOOK PHILIPPINES said its messaging platform Messenger is starting to gain credibility as a channel for business transactions, noting it is recording more than 10 billion messages between individuals and businesses on the platform every month.

In a media briefing at the Facebook Philippines headquarters in Taguig City on Friday, the firm’s country director John Rubio said businesses must learn to adapt to the changing consumer landscape that now links customers to a brand more easily through an instant messaging platform.

“Messaging is happening really fast in the Philippines because of three reasons: because it’s instant, it’s direct and it’s personal… And because of that, the expectations of Filipinos have changed as well. The way we interact with our closest circle is how we want to interact as well with brands and companies or groups,” he said.

“Because of that shift, these companies need to think through how they leverage these platforms, these connections across that channel of discovery, consideration, transaction, purchase and connection,” Mr. Rubio added.

Citing a Facebook-commissioned study by Nielsen in March 2016 — the Facebook Messaging Survey which was conducted in 14 markets — the social network said 64% of respondents from different age groups spanning baby boomers to millennials prefer instant messaging over making a call or sending an email.

It added that people are becoming more inclined towards use messaging apps to reach out to businesses, with 53% saying they are more likely to shop with a business they can contact through a messaging app.




Facebook said out of the 2.3 billion active monthly users on its platform, the top activity for those in the Philippines are chatting and messaging (81%), followed by browsing and posting (77%) and watching videos (49%).

“Messaging is growing at a global scale and transforming expectations of businesses of any size to be more responsive, and build more meaningful connections with their customers… With messaging, we see an opportunity to connect more meaningfully with things that people are passionate about,” Mr. Rubio said in a statement.

Another Facebook-commissioned survey by Sentient Decision Science in June 2018 titled Motivations, Mindsets and Emotional Experiences in Messaging (vs. Feed), which covered more than 8,000 individuals from Brazil, India, United States, and the United Kingdom, showed 81% of the respondents use Facebook Messenger to inquire about a product, and 74% to make a purchase.

“The minute you tell them something, people want to be able to communicate with you as a business at that point in time,” Mr. Rubio said, noting the importance of jumping into the instant messaging platform than relying solely on traditional methods such as voice call and email. — Denise A. Valdez

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