Facebook updated its Facebook Messaging policies on March 4th, 2020.

This article will summarize what those changes are, and how they'll affect Octane AI users.

What was the policy before March 4th, 2020? 

Any subscriber is able to receive promotional messages for 24 hours after interacting with your bot or your Facebook page. 

After that 24-hour period, one additional promotional message was allowed.

What's the policy after March 4th, 2020? 

As of March 4th, the extra promotional message allowed after the initial 24-hour window is no longer be allowed.

You can still send promotional messages in the initial 24-hour period, and you'll also have two additional ways of messaging customers outside of that: 

What does this mean for me?

Browse and cart abandonment features will still work!

The only change required here is that they have to be sent before the 24-hour period is up. Before March 4th, 86% of all reminders were already sent within the initial 24-hour window.

Here's a quick overview of the features that the update affects:

New Feature
One-time notification

Feature Updates
Broadcasts
Flows
Main Menu 

Removed Features
Smile integration
Out-of-stock notification

What are one-time notifications? 

One time notifications are a new feature that gives customers an option to receive a notification from you. If they agree, this will let you send them one notification outside of the initial 24-hour messaging period.

Note: customers have to opt-in for each one-time notification. 

To access this feature, you have to request permissions on your Facebook page for one-time notifications.

You can do this in your Facebook page's settings. Navigate to the "Advanced Messaging" tab under Settings to find this:

From there, scroll down until you see Requested Features: 

Once access has been granted, you should see this green checkmark: 

Can I use sponsored messages outside of the 24-hour messaging window?

Yes! Facebook's sponsored messaging lets you message outside of the 24-hour period. These can be set up within Octane AI or from Facebook ads manager.

You can also target any custom audience within Facebook ads with sponsored messages. 

This means sponsored messages will remain a highly effective tool at engaging your audience and increasing your opt-ins.

How were features affected? 

To make sure your bot complies with Messaging policies, there were a few other changes:

Broadcasts

Broadcasts were one-time messages you can send subscribers from Octane AI. 

  • As of March 4th, broadcasts have been deprecated.  

Bots created before March 4th will still be able to view their broadcast history, but won't be able to send any new broadcasts. If your page had access to subscription messaging, it will still be able to send subscription broadcasts.

Here's an in-depth guide to what's possible with broadcasts now.

Flows

Flows are automated Messenger sequences your bot can send to customers under certain conditions. As of March 4th:

  • Flows can only send within 24 hours of the last time a customer interacted with your bot. 
  • Customers can only receive follow-up messages from a flow within the 24-hour window.
  • Browse and cart abandonment messages only send inside of the 24-hour period.

Tip: here's a flow that offers a follow-up message when the customer clicks on a button. There are other triggers you can use for a follow-up message as well. 

Main Menu

The following options are no longer available for main menu customization:

  • Social waitlist
  • Subscription menu feed

Other Changes

Smile integrations and out-of-stock notifications are no longer be accessible. Any existing Smile integrations were be disabled.

These changes were made to ensure we comply with Facebook Messenger policies.

Can I still send promotional messages?

Although promotional broadcasts will be removed, you can still send promotional content in your messages through flows, sponsored messages and one-time notifications.

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