Posted December 19, 2011 2:50 pm by with 3 comments

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Facebook is one of the easiest ways to contact a brand, company, even a celebrity. Now they’re making it even easier to share your thoughts with Private Messages for Pages.

The feature is currently being tested in a small area, somewhere in Asia I hear, but it’s got the social media crowd — dare I say — all a twitter.

It’s big news for marketers, because it opens up a new line of communication between consumers and the brand. The downside is the extra time it’s going to take to respond and clear the inbox.

And knowing how caustic people can be in their public comments, it’s a little frightening to imagine what they’ll say in a private message. Double that, because the new system does not require the sender to “like” the page before shooting off their thoughts.

We Are Social has screengrabs of all the steps, but basically it works just like regular Facebook messaging, with one big exception. With Private Messages for Pages, it’s a one-way street. Admins cannot use it to initiate contact.

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Even with the extra time drain it’s likely to cause, this is a great new tool. Last week, I wanted to ask a company if their new promo could be applied to my previous order. I left my comment publicly on the promo thread, but would have preferred to ask privately. Same as when I wanted to lodge a small complaint against my favorite fast food chain. I wanted to inform the manager of an issue but didn’t want to point fingers in public. A private message option would have been the answer.

What do you think? Do you like the idea or do you see it becoming a haven for spammers and complainers?


  • Bring on the caustic, angry, bitter private messages!

    When something goes that wrong, they will (hopefully) find us by phone or email. And, yes, they WILL give us a piece of their minds whether or not Facebook allows it. When treated with an honest amount of respect, many of angry customers can become overnight fans of your business, too. When happens, I would just as soon have the “Like” button present.

  • It will definitely result in more engagement. Since people spend so much time on Facebook anyway it’s likely that they will send a private Facebook message instead of searching for a company email address. It’s one less step. Some people don’t feel comfortable sharing publicly, so this will eliminate that problem but will also lead to less activity on the actual Facebook wall, which is what keeps it interesting.

    • Cynthia Boris

      I’ve always been amazed by how hard it is to find contact info for a company. I’ve had faster responses to Facebook comments than emails, for sure.