The keynote started off with Mark Zuckerberg (Founder & CEO of Meta) highlighting the changes in direction of communication and interaction in our day-to-day lives as well as how businesses are in need of transformation to adapt to this evolving trend.
Zuckerberg also hinted to updates on WhatsApp, Messenger, Instagram, and Meta’s latest CRM platform: Kustomer (with a K), we’ll get into that interesting news later in the article!
“The best business experiences meet people where they are”Mark Zuckerberg, Founder & CEO of Meta
People Behavior and Trends
You might have noticed in your daily-phone-scroll routine that your favourite social media platform seems to have developed its own version of messaging in these past few years, but did you know that accumulated through WhatsApp, Instagram DMs, and Messenger alone, the number of messages sent each week exceeded over 1 billion texts.
Each keynote speakers shared shifts in behavior on how people no longer wanted to wait hours on end to talk to a business’ customer service agent, instead they want to communicate to business on a faster and more personal level – adding that human element. This is clearly shown through the uprising trend of chat commerce with volumes of daily conversations between people and businesses growing immensely over 50% in the last year alone. Thus, showing customers that your business knows what they need is now the new standard of expectation.
The faster businesses can adapt, the more customers they will be able to capture. Brands that have made the adjustments have seen gains in customer satisfactions, agent efficiency, and improvement in marketing & sales. By optimizing your call centers to upsell and cross sell, your business will be able to replace a cost center to a profit center.
Start, Scale, and Delight!
This was the main narrative of the conference; you can check out the short summary here!
First, starting conversations with your customers has always been easy, but Meta has now made it easier and more inclusive across its platforms. Users can send messages to Facebook and Instagram from websites and apps using weblinks, chat plugins, and QR codes. This combined with the right online advertisement can drive more leads and sales to your business.
After customers have reached out to you, it’s now time to scale your business through conversations. How? Simple – the answer is automation. With automation your business can promptly respond to simple and repetitive customer inquiries within a second, therefore optimizing your human resources to focus and provide services to the more complex conversations.
Lastly, delighting your customers with a seamless experience through a personalized messaging thread. Meta is now developing and improving features for users to shop, receive relevant updates and notifications, as well as the voice and video capabilities within its chats. For customers; a delightful and easy-to-use interface, and for businesses; a single view of its customers all in 1 channel.
“Messaging needs to be the cornerstone for your next chapter of digital transformation”Matt Idema, VP of Business Messaging, Meta
WhatsApp is getting a new upgrade by offering businesses the ability to customize a large variety of features on its platform (via WhatsApp Business App for small businesses& WhatsApp business platform API for corporates). The highlighted feature mentioned is the e-commerce capabilities of the application where users can pay for their purchases easily within the chat.
But that’s not all, WhatsApp will also be easier for businesses to manage – you and your team can easily administer a chat across over 10 devices. Advertisements on Facebook and Instagram can now direct customers straight to WhatsApp through the new click to chat link option, guiding customers to start a conversation with you!
Messenger and Instagram DMs
Though getting a little less focus than WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Instagram Direct Messages’ updates are absolutely not forgettable. The two exciting upcoming features consist of recurring notifications and appointment booking tool.
With recurring notifications, users will be able to decide if they’d like to get occasional in-chat updates from their favourite brands, they will have free control on how often they want the updates and even when they’d like to stop! As for businesses, this feature provides a more personal communication channel to its customer allowing for a higher open rate than the old traditional email subscription.
You will soon be able to RSVP appointments easily through chats with the appointment booking tool. This feature allows customers to receive reminders and view details of their upcoming arrangements. They can even add the appointment to their calendar applications!
The only time you should text and drive
Okay of course you should never text while driving, however at Uber, you might be surprised to learn that messaging and communication is one of the core parts of this world-renown platform.
Dara Khosrowshahi (CEO of Uber) shared that messaging takes center stage in its operations, whether it’s informing riders of a driver’s location or updating the status of your food delivery. This is highlighted through Uber’s entry to India, where WhatsApp quickly became the number one communication platform among users, and with the new customization tool, users are able to access new and helpful features such as the ability to call drivers straight from the app!
What’s also astonishing to know is that Uber was able to gain a significant number of new drivers via its collaboration with WhatsApp, a number that was stagnantly changing prior, with most being from the younger generation. Likewise, the riders Uber gained from the partnership and additional marketing strategies have trended towards the mentioned age group as well.
Before ending the keynote, Khosrowshahi left a little advice to business of all sizes: ‘Hurry up, it’s happening!’
Is this a new trend in Thailand?
Though messaging is obviously not an entirely new trend, Meta’s Conversation conference marks the first formal discussion from one of the world’s most influential brand on the topic. The awareness on the trend is now spreading faster than ever throughout businesses all around the world.
However, from a perspective in a country where its citizens’ social media and online messaging hours are through the roof, therefore pushing businesses to adapt quickly, many features mentioned such as chat automations, e-commerce capabilities, and advanced AI tools used to optimize chat experiences are not entirely a new concept.
But it does spark the curiosity of what the next leap in messaging will be and how it will affect the country going forward. Will Thailand be able to keep ahead of the trend or will we start falling behind? How can we utilize this upper leg in the race to position Thailand as a key player in messaging innovation? And the most important question… is messaging here to stay or will it fade over time like the others?