The policy changes will now go into effect in March.
Messenger are making some changes to the way you will be able to send out broadcast messages to your audience. They are trying to ensure all messages are relevant and timely:
"The Messenger Platform’s policies are designed to help people and businesses connect effectively through Messenger to achieve meaningful outcomes. At the heart of this is the understanding that people and businesses need a seamless, reliable way to get something done - whether it is getting a question answered, making a purchase, or communicating important and relevant updates. We know people expect businesses to respond quickly, and businesses who respond to users messages faster see better business outcomes. The policies are designed to encourage businesses and developers to:
Respond to customers in a timely fashion when they reach out
Share important updates that are personally relevant to their customers"
So, what are these changes?
Here is the list of the revised policies that will take effect on March 4th, 2020:
“24+1” rule is getting trimmed to just “24”, so the “+1” follow-up is going away
Subscription Messaging is being deprecated even on the Page-level and will be available only for News Pages
Message Tags are being streamlined from 17 tags to 4
Businesses will have up to 24 hours to respond to a user. Messages sent within the 24 hour window may contain promotional content. So if someone has engaged with your bot, for example hitting a button or triggering a keyword, you will be able to send them a message up to 24hrs after this event.
Subscription messaging allowed you to send relevant messages to your audience. This is the method we have been using for broadcasts on The Bot Platform. You were able to send non-promotional content out to anyone who had subscribed.
It used to be that a platform like us could get app-level subscription permissions and pass it on to Pages (businesses). This allowed us to provide a seamless experience to the businesses that we serve. There will be a couple of alternatives to this as noted below.
Messenger recently announced that with the new changes on January 15, 2020, subscription messaging permission is going to be available only for News Pages and deprecated for other types of businesses.
Messages Tags are a way for businesses, including those who are not a news page, to reach their customers after the 24-hour window is over. Each message tag is designed to support a specific use case: confirmed event reminders, shipping updates, account notifications, etc.
There will be 4 message tags that you can use to send a broadcast message:
Confirmed Event Update: This tag is used to send reminders or updates for an event they have registered for (e.g., RSVP'd, purchased tickets). This tag may be used for upcoming events and events in progress.
Post-Purchase Update: This tag is used to keep someone up to date about a recent purchase they have made. It can be used for confirmation of shipment, notification of changes etc.
Account Update: This tag is for notifying customers about account updates like suspicious activity in the account, or that an application is pending more information.
Human Agent (beta): This is intended for human agent support issues that cannot be resolved within the standard messaging window (e.g., business is closed for the weekend, issue requires >24 hours to resolve)
What does this mean for you?
If you are a news page and are registered with the Facebook News Page Index, you can continue sending broadcasts in the same manner as you have been
If you are not a news page, you will be able to send a broadcast if it falls under one of the above message tags
If your use case does not fall into one of the options above, you can use sponsored messages
Sponsored messages allow businesses to send promotional content outside the standard messaging window. For those of you who are looking for a solution to broadcast targeted messages to many people, we suggest switching over to this method. You can set up sponsored messages from your Facebook Ads Manager.
Yes, it’s a paid solution, but once the end-user engages, the 24-hour rule kicks in and you’ll be able to message freely.
Remember that unlike the old broadcasts, sponsored messages can contain promotional content right from the first message which should raise your conversion numbers.