Facebook's New Message Platform Hurts Marketers

Facebook's new messaging platform makes it harder for marketers to get noticed, says a new report.

Facebook’s new messaging platform makes it harder for marketers to get noticed, says a new report.

ExactTarget Snapshot: Facebook Messages” says that the new platform results in marketers’ messages landing in people’s “other” folder, where they are most likely missed.

Only messages from friends or friends of friends land in the main inbox — and most users don’t even realize that the new messaging platform even has an “other” folder where communications from from marketers might land.

Also, all messages from the same user are consolidated into a single thread, which presents issues for marketers because there are no subject lines, no way for users to file or organize messages, users cannot determine the number of unread messages, and no matter how many messages are sent by marketers, only one spot in users’ folders will be occupied.

From a display perspective, users initially see only HTML code if a text version of the message is not included. Display was fine after users click “expand,” but links did not work all of the time unless users clicked “view as a webpage.” And that requires still more extra steps.

The report’s conclusion:

Despite significant barriers to deliverability, it’s far too early to sound the alarm on FBM. As of right now, a very small number of people have facebook.com addresses, and even fewer are likely using FBM as their primary or sole email address.

Readers, what do you think Facebook ought to do to help marketers get around their perceived obstacles with the new messaging platform?