Episode 141 | Posted on

Marketing 1-to-1 on Facebook Messenger at Scale: Mikael Yang

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ManyChat CEO @mikedyang is here to talk about scaling, automating, and best practices of Facebook Messenger marketing on the next @mktg_speak. Click To Tweet

This Week’s Guest:

If you think that email is the present and future of online marketing, think again. Facebook Messenger has over a billion active users, and their open rate is astonishing compared to other forms of communication. While this may not be a viable marketing method for those trying to handle every message themselves, using a bot can help you scale and automate your Messenger interactions.


Today’s guest is Mikael Yang, the cofounder and CEO of ManyChat. This is the leading Messenger marketing platform, with over 250,000 businesses in over 200 countries using its services. (I’m proud to add that I’m one of its happy users, as well.) Mikael will take a deep dive into marketing through Facebook Messenger. He’ll explain why it’s such a valuable marketing avenue and how best to take advantage of this opportunity to streamline communication with customers.

Find Out More About Mikael Here:

Mikael Yang on LinkedIn
Mikael Yang on Facebook
@mikedyang on Twitter

In This Episode:

  • [01:25]What is it about the Messenger platform that makes it so ideal for marketing?
  • [06:52] – Email as an industry is still growing despite all the negative decisions on how the system would work, Mikael points out.
  • [07:31] – Mikael talks about why we aren’t seeing the same sort of marketing on WhatsApp as on Messenger.
  • [09:39] – Learn about why Messenger is a better marketing platform than SMS or texting.
  • [12:22]What are some best practices, and some mistakes to avoid, if you want to scale and automate Messenger marketing?
  • [14:38] – Mikael talks about what he would say to naysayers who would say that Messenger will close down in a matter of time.
  • [16:55] – We hear about why SnapChat is struggling when Messenger isn’t having any of those sorts of problems.
  • [19:29] – Mikael circles back to talking about Messenger marketing best practices.
  • [21:21] – What are some of the big mistakes that Mikael sees with people who are using ManyChat?
  • [26:21] – Stephan remembers hearing from DigitalMarketer in 2016 about their uses of ManyChat.
  • [28:22] – How did Mikael end up creating ManyChat?
  • [31:33] – Mikael talks about what, exactly, a “bot” is in terms of his industry (as opposed to SEO, for example).
  • [33:18] – We hear about why someone might want to create a bot for their Facebook page rather than having a team of people manning it 24/7.
  • [36:54] – Mikael talks more about referral programs.
  • [39:47] – We learn more about how Mikael is integrating AI, or artificial intelligence, into the ManyChat platform.
  • [42:42] – Are there any cool AI things coming up on Mikael’s roadmap?
  • [46:41] – Mikael talks about what the differentiator is that would push a marketer to explore using Facebook Messenger with ManyChat.
  • [48:57] – Where can people go to try out ManyChat?

Links and Resources:

Your Checklist of Actions to Take

☑ Prioritize customer engagement. Find ways to connect with my clientele to keep them taken care of.

☑ Utilize ManyChat and take advantage of the growing number of Messenger subscribers.

☑ Provide my subscribers with the utmost convenience. Make it easy for them to reach out, conduct purchases, and send feedback.

☑ Wait for my customers to express interest in my business before connecting with them on messaging portals.

☑ Be systematic in my communication and eliminate interactions with poor leads. Use effective CTAs and curate auto-replies for better engagement.

☑ Make it easy for my contacts to unsubscribe. Even if I don’t want them to unsubscribe, it’s better to honor their request.

☑ Find out which other messaging apps work for my subscribers. See if they’re comfortable using Viber, Messenger, WeChat or Instagram.

☑ Integrate eCommerce into messaging apps with the help of tools like ManyChat and other bots.

☑ Automate my process to eliminate the need for constant monitoring. Determine my customers’ common needs and create auto replies to handle their requests.  

☑ Try ManyChat to reach out to my followers via Messenger in an engaging and interactive way.


S: Email marketing is great but Facebook Messenger has over 8 billion active users and the open rate is astounding. Often times, it’s 60%+. You can use bots like ManyChat, for example, to help you scale and automate these interactions that you have with folks through Messenger. It’s pretty incredible what you can accomplish with ManyChat. In fact, I’m one of its customers. Today, we have on this episode number 141, Mikael Yang. He’s the co-founder and CEO of ManyChat which is the leading Messenger marketing platform with over 250,000 businesses in over 100 countries using the platform. Mike, it’s great to have you on the show.


M: Hey, thanks for having me.


S: Let’s talk about Messenger as a marketing platform, first of all. Because I think folks tend to think of Facebook as a marketing platform, but not necessarily Messenger or even just like any of these messaging clients such as WhatsApp or anything. What is it about the Messenger platform that makes it so ideal for marketing?


M: That’s a great question. I think the thing that makes Messenger a great marketing channel is because there is over 1.3 billion people using it monthly and the audience is very engaged. For example, the difference between Messenger marketing and email marketing, we like to point out that we have over 70%, 80%, even 90% open rates on Messenger while on email you get usually 20%, 25%. In terms of CTRs, email is 1%, 2% CTRs and Messenger is like 10%, 20% CTRs. It’s a really engaging channel. It’s really hard for you as a consumer to not read that message. That is why we think it’s going to be the next big marketing channel. I can dive deep if you want to but I’m sure there’s many more interesting questions that you want to unpack.


S: Let’s just qualify a couple of things about what you’re saying. It’s hard not to read a message in Facebook Messenger–is that because it just kind of screams at you if you leave it as an unread message more so than an email or what is it about Messenger?


M: Yeah. Messengers came as a substitute for SMS–a lot of them came as a substitute for SMS. Not a lot of people from US know this but outside US, texts usually cost you money so there is rarely a concept of unlimited text. When messengers and mobile internet came along, messengers like WhatsApp were a great way to save money on texts. If you think about historical open rates of SMS messages, they’re actually over 95%. It’s very personal, it’s very private, and you’re trained to open messages on Messenger as a consumer and yes, it is really hard to not read any message there.

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