While your dealership’s Facebook page continues to grow, you may notice that an increasing number of messages are hitting your Facebook Messenger inbox.
Unless you have a dedicated team or individual fielding those messages throughout the day, they can quickly pile up. Before you know it, you may find yourself with 50, 100, or even more unanswered messages.
What you want to avoid is going too long without answering your Facebook messages. Each message represents a prospective customer, and as you know, if you don’t convert those leads while they’re hot, you may not get another chance.
If responding to Facebook messages within a few hours—or even a day—isn’t practical or sustainable for your dealership, don’t worry: There’s a solution.
Facebook offers a few time-saving (and lead-saving) features to ease the burden of a swiftly growing inbox: Instant Replies, Away Messages, and Messenger Greetings. All are available within your Facebook page’s Messaging settings.
Here’s a breakdown of each type of auto reply.
Instant Replies of up to 250 characters are displayed to your customers as soon as they send you a message. Here’s an example of this type of reply from a major global online auction company:
Hello, we have received your message and will be with you shortly. In order to bid and buy in our auctions, you will need to be a member. If you are not already a member, register for free online at [URL].
Away Messages of up to 250 characters are displayed to your customers when you’re away from your computer or phone, based on a schedule that you determine.
Messenger Greetings of up to 160 characters are displayed to your customers the first time they launch a Messenger conversation with you.
With each of these features, you can add personalization so that before the message or greeting is delivered, Facebook dynamically pulls in the person’s name wherever you would like it to appear within the message.
In addition, you can choose to personalize any of these messages with your company’s website URL, phone number, or address.
Keep in mind that Instant Replies, Away Messages, and Messenger Greetings are not a substitute for actual one-to-one communication between your customers and you or your staff. You still need to find the time and resources to use Facebook Messenger for its intended purpose.
By implementing these three Messenger tools, however, you can provide a quick, personalized first touch that both leaves a great impression and potentially answers the exact questions your customers came to ask you in the first place.
Also, your use of these tools very well may position you ahead competing dealerships that haven’t yet jumped on these valuable social media features.
Kaci Schack is the senior marketing manager at Copart, a global leader in online vehicle auctions. For more information, or to become a Copart member, visit Copart’s registration page. Join the conversation and follow Copart on Facebook.