How to Get Facebook Subscription Messaging Permissions

5 min read
Messenger image

Facebook Messenger’s policy changes have gone into effect on July 31, 2019. We take the chance to look at why getting permissions for Subscription Messaging can be a massive win for your Messenger Marketing campaigns.


Update September 2019: please note that the this article is out-of-date as of September 2019. Please refer to our most recent article on Facebook's Messenger policies for a summary of the current situation.


Are you a Facebook Page admin? Do you want to use the Facebook platform for more than just standard messaging? Are you trying to get permission to send Subscription Messages?

If you missed the Facebook Subscription Messaging deadline, there’s no need to worry. You can still request permissions for your Facebook page.

Here’s why you should, and how to use Subscription Messaging when your page is approved. Make sure you use all of the advanced messaging features Facebook’s platform has to offer!

Direct messaging: the future of sharing

First of all, Facebook’s pivot to a privacy-focused vision for social networking is a strong indication that the future of social sharing is messaging. At the same time, Mark Zuckerberg explained earlier this year that this pivot is based on several principles:

  • Private interactions. This means simple, intimate, private communication.
  • Encryption. Offering secure, end-to-end encrypted messaging.
  • Reducing Permanence. Moving from a ‘town square’ social media model to ‘living room’ style sharing.
  • Safety. Protecting people’s private message data.
  • Interoperability. Employing end-to-end encryption across messaging services.
  • Secure data storage. Where and how private messaging data will be stored.

These principles are very much in line with the recent Facebook Messenger policy changes. Facebook wants minimize spam and safeguard people’s Messenger inboxes as intimate, private and secure spaces.

To facilitate this, the company removed Subscription Messaging permissions from being handled at an app level. Pages now need to apply for Facebook subscription messaging permission, individually.

These permissions allows a page to broadcast messages to subscribers, regardless of their level of activity, at any time, as long as the messages are non-promotional.

What’s most interesting about the above, is the interoperability Mark Zuckerberg mentions. Word got out recently that Facebook is taking the first major steps towards integrating Instagram Messaging with Messenger.

Facebook-Messenger-Instagram-Direct-WhatsApp-unified
Source: BBC.com

Facebook is planning to merge its three major messaging apps: WhatsApp, Messenger, and Instagram Direct. Applying for Subscription Messaging permissions now means you are future-proofing your business to operate across these three platforms in the future. As you will have access to the full suite of messaging features.

With these changes being so significant, the application process is, of course thorough. However, it is 100% possible to pass if you take the application process seriously. Simply put in the effort to convince Facebook’s review team that your use case requires Subscription Messaging permissions.

The great thing about using direct messages to connect with your audience is that it’s intimate, unfiltered and direct. Gone are the days of reaching just a fraction of your audience on social news feeds.

This is why open rates and CTRs are so high. Let’s keep it that way! You should be committed to keeping this form of communication consensual and solicited. So are we, and so is Facebook, of course.

With this mindset and the right use case, your case is extremely strong for Subscription Messaging permissions. This allows you to offer your subscribers a positive, enjoyable, spam-free messaging experience.


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How to use Subscription Messaging

The Subscription Messaging tag can only be used for messages that are non-promotional in nature. Facebook’s Messenger policy overview offers three use cases for this type of messaging.

Facebook-Messenger-policy-Subscription-Messaging-use-cases
Source: Facebook Messenger Platform Policy

It’s important that your use case corresponds to one of the above. When applying for permissions, make sure you use Facebook’s terminology, to make it easier for reviewers to handle your application.

You’re eligible when you plan to use Subscription Messaging to:

  • Inform people/provide information
  • Enable people to manage productivity
  • Enable people to receive and monitor information

This is opposed to using Subscription Messaging for promotional purposes and message your subscribers with deals, discount, or offers.

Facebook-examples-of-promotional-content
FB examples of how not to use Subscription Messaging

On top of following these simple rules, some best practices that will minimize your potential spam-levels include:

  1. Making it clear what users are opting into
  2. Making opting out easy and simple
  3. Adding unsubscribe options at the end of your broadcasts

Use Subscription Messaging to send out important news updates that are relevant to all your subscribers. For instance, the unforeseen cancellation of an upcoming event you are organizing.

How this would work

You have a timely, non-promotional news update to send. For instance, a news update on the weather conditions forecast for today’s big event.

Weather-conditions-subscription-messaging-sample-message
Make sure your subscribers are well prepared

Another great use case is when unforeseen circumstances lead to an event being cancelled. This requires all your subscribers to be contacted, and a direct message is the best way to do so.

Take a look at how Boardmasters festival got in touch with their Messenger subscribers to make sure everyone was up to date on the latest news regarding the festivals cancellation:

Boardmasters-festival-Subscription-Messaging-sample-message
Make sure your subscribers receive urgent announcements

This piece of essential, non-promotional content made sure that all subscribers were aware of the current situation. Push notifications and insanely high open rates meant maximized efficiency for the festival’s organizers.

Similarly, if you’re an artist applying for Subscription Messaging permissions, this would be a great sample message:

Artist-Subscription-Messaging-sample-message

Getting permission to send subscription messages could take some time. Get started now, so you can make full use of this advanced messaging feature as soon as possible!

Here's a concise support article with instructions on how to apply.


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Jonas van de Poel

Customer Success & Content Marketer at I AM POP. Poet, linguist, polyglot and wordsmith armed with fountain pen and ergonomic keyboard. Wears shades at night. Dreams in breakbeat at 174 bpm.