Today, Facebook announced a deeper integration between their two most popular messaging apps: Messenger and Instagram. Here’s the breakdown.
TL;DR Scroll down to the video at the bottom of this post 👇
A New Way to Message on Instagram
An update to Instagram DMs announced today shows how shared Messenger features and cross-communication between the messaging apps will be rolled out gradually. Facebook's plan to unify the two chat platforms is now well underway.
Facebook's announcement refers to the update as a "new Messenger experience on the [Instagram] app." Instagram users will be prompted to update and if they do, they'll be able to reach Facebook users who don't have an Instagram account.
Similarly, Messenger users will be able to chat with friends who only have an Instagram account. The update will be rolled out to everyone who uses Instagram DM in the coming months. The new features on Instagram and Messenger are being rolled out to a few countries around the world, for now.
Three Interoperable Messaging Apps
The merger of the two messaging apps has been long in the works. Interoperability among the Facebook company's three messaging apps, Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram DMs is part of a larger vision that sees the future of social as private.
The first step towards this interoperability clearly lies in letting Instagram and Messenger users chat to each other freely, without leaving either platform. For now, however, WhatsApp will probably remain a separate, end-to-end encrypted, standalone app for a little while longer:
Take a look at what the shared experience looks like on the Messenger and Instagram DM apps:
Messenger Features on Instagram
Apart from the ability to chat to each other cross-platform, we'll also be seeing a few Messenger-based features available on Instagram. The features listed are the following:
- Communicate Across Apps
- Watch Together
- Vanish Mode
- Selfie Stickers
- Chat Colors
- Custom Emoji Reactions
- Animated Message Effects
- Message Controls
- Enhanced Reporting and Blocking Updates
Next: Commerce and Chat on Messenger and Instagram
Where Messenger already allows for elaborate automation on its chat platform, Instagram DM currently lags behind. However, the Facebook company has been heavily invested in bringing ecommerce to its social media platforms for quite a while now. Take a look at the recently released Facebook and Instagram Shops and integration with Shopify, for instance.
At the same time, conversational commerce is high up on the list of Facebook's vision of the future of commerce. The merging of Messenger and Instagram DM opens up even more space for conversational commerce to grow. Buying, selling, and servicing customers straight from chat, whether that be on one platform or the other.
The future of commerce and chat, then, is looking quite bright. Especially, considering Messenger's infrastructure already allows you to automate abandoned cart reminders, back in stock notifications, FAQs and much more. These features might also be available on Instagram DM soon.
Combined with the Shopify product infrastructure powering Facebook and Instagram Shops, and supported by Facebook and Instagram's news feeds and ad platform - that's a pretty hefty ecommerce ecosystem to take into consideration. What do you think will be next for conversational commerce?
Or why don't you connect to ShopPop directly through Messenger at https://m.me/shoppophq