facebook-subscription-messaging-how-to-apply

How to Apply — & Get Approved! — for Facebook Subscription Messaging

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in July 2018 and updated most recently in June 2019 to reflect current Facebook Messenger policy and a change announced in May 2019.

The gist of the most recent Messenger policy update? If your Facebook Business Page is not approved for subscription messaging, then beginning July 31, 2019, you can not send chat blasts with the non-promotional subscription messaging tag.

Get your business page subscription messaging approved by Facebook; read this guide and download the cheat sheet to ace your application.

subscription-messaging-cheat-sheet-download

Today I want to talk about a pressing and important issue for Facebook marketers and advertisers— Facebook subscription messaging.

We’ll review what subscription messaging is, how to use it as a high-impact marketing tactic, and how to apply and get approved for Facebook subscription messaging so you can chat blast and do Facebook Messenger marketing with MobileMonkey.

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This guide covers:

Jump to each section with the links above or read on for details.

What Is Facebook Subscription Messaging?

The explanation starts with the 24+1 Facebook Messenger rule.

In the first 24 hours of a user opting in to messaging, you can send unlimited updates, promotional and non-promotional.

After 24 hours, you can send unlimited non-promotional updates and one promotional follow up. This is called the 24+1 Rule and what Facebook calls “standard messaging.”

When you create Facebook Messenger chat blasts, you pick a purpose of the blast. There are 17 messaging purposes, btw:

chat blast purpose

Promotional chat blasts are available to anyone, limited to the first 24 hours, plus one any time after.

You can also pay to send a promotional chat blasts any time via Facebook sponsored message ads.

Meanwhile non-promotional chat blasts are available to all businesses — except for one type: non-promotional subscription messages.

The non-promotional subscription message can be sent by businesses that have been approved by Facebook for subscription messaging.

How Is Subscription Messaging Changing?

Starting July 31, 2019, Facebook is requiring page-level subscription messaging permissions.

Previously MobileMonkey applied for subscription messaging permissions to enable all customers to do chat blasting in an unlimited way provided users adhere to restrictions for purpose categories. This is Facebook subscription messaging approval at the app level.

required-facebook-subscription-messaging-permissions
Source: Facebook for Developers

In short, rather than MobileMonkey’s subscription messaging permissions applying to all users, now page owners will subscribe on a company page basis.

How to Apply for Facebook Subscription Messaging in 2 Steps

The good news is that it’s quick, easy and free to apply for Facebook subscription messaging. I’ll show you how in 2 steps.

The trickier news is that Facebook has a manual review process for subscription messaging applications.

You’ll want to take special care and pay close attention in putting together a thoughtful application. Follow these instructions to get approved for Facebook subscription messaging.

Step 1: Request Subscription Messaging in Facebook Page Settings 

From your Facebook Page, go to Settings:

facebook page settings

Go to Messenger Platform:

settings-messenger-platform

And from Advanced Messaging Features, request subscription messaging:

request-subscription-messaging

Step 2: Complete the Short 3-Part Application for Subscription Messaging

The subscription messaging request has three parts — pick a category, describe the nature of your chatbot, and give a couple examples.

The three categories to choose from are:

  • News
  • Productivity
  • Personal Tracking

subscription-messaging-request-bot-description

For the most part, MobileMonkey customers will choose News.

The other categories are too specific to generally apply. Business bots help customers through relevant updates and industry information.

In the details section, describe the information and updates services your chatbot provides, like blog updates.

For MobileMonkey we said something like “MobileMonkey chatbot sends periodic alerts on important marketing industry news.”

Then provide a couple of examples of the helpful news blasts sent by your chatbot:

subscription-messaging-request-bot-examples

MobileMonkey’s examples were something like:

“Alert: GDPR regulations come into effect in 24 hours. Check the website for details.”

“The American marketing association has released their annual state of the industry study. Check website for details.”

When your Page has been approved, you’ll see this notice under Advanced Messaging Features:

subscription-messaging-approved

Tips for Writing a Facebook Subscription Messaging Request

By applying for subscription messaging, you’re agreeing not to send promotional messages under the non-promotional blast purpose.

It is important that you not send promotional stuff outside of the 24+1 rule.

The way that Facebook checks is with machine learning. If you sending too much promotional stuff you’ll get reviewed.

How long does subscription messaging review take?

Because the subscription request is a manual review process, the amount of time to be approved varies. We’ve seen approvals completed within days, or take months.

What happens if you don’t apply for Facebook subscription messaging?

We recommend all our customers apply for subscription messaging to get permissions to send non-promotional and 24+1 promotional messages.

If you don’t apply, or aren’t approved, you have the option to send sponsored promotional messages. You’ll basically have to pay for every message you send.

Do you have to request subscription messaging for every Page?

Facebook is switching to page-level approval, so yes, requests must be made for each Page. Go into each Page’s settings to find the request form.

How can I tell if my chatbot is a “News,” “Productivity” or “Personal tracking” chatbot?

The Facebook for Developers documentation describes the different chatbot categories.

“Productivity” chatbots use integrations for managing personal productivity like calendar events and reminders.

“Personal Tracking” chatbots are more specifically tied to “personal trackers” that give updates on individuals’ health, wellness, fitness and finance.

eligible-use-cases-subscription-messaging

As you can tell, subscription messaging is an important thing to apply for in your Facebook page. If you have any questions, join the community and ask in the Facebook group.

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Important next steps:

20 thoughts on “How to Apply — & Get Approved! — for Facebook Subscription Messaging”

    1. Virginia Nussey

      Hi @Precious. After Dec. 31, 2018, a page that isn’t approved for subscription messaging will not be able to send chat blasts under the purpose “non-promotional subscription.” These pages can send chat blasts marked as promotional and pay for messages sent to their contacts. You can still apply after Dec. 31, like new FB pages will still be able to apply.

      1. Virginia Nussey,

        Where do we find the option to pay for messages to our lists? And how much is FB charging?

        Will the “pay for messages” be an ad in the list of all messenger messages from everyone or will it be an actual message that delivers and looks like messages within the 24+1?

  1. Hello would please guide me if I really need the subscription thing?
    I sell real estate here in the philippines
    I would like to have some kind of automatic followup to them 1 day after they received my first message.
    Do I need the subscription?

    Sample

    Hi Mr/Ms. {{NAME}} are you interested in the property? or would you like to see more sample of houses.
    We are here to help you if you have any questions”
    BUTTON FOR CHATBOT ( YES SCHEDULE A FREE TRIPPING )
    BUTTON FOR CHATBOT ( I WOULD LIKE TO SEE OTHER HOUSES)

  2. do I apply for this even though I have just started with mobile monkey and not even up to sending our blasts yet?

    1. @Alyson Poole: If you are setting up one or more FB pages, go ahead and apply for permission for each page even if you aren’t planning to use it right away … you *will* need it as you go forward and want to reach out regularly to your list. As the article above mentions, you will still be able to do that after December 2018, but why not take advantage of the fact that you can get in early?

  3. How can I tell if I was approved? There’s a green check mark next to Subscription Messaging and no “Request” link. Does that mean it’s been approved?

  4. This is misleading, you should point out that the 24 hours refer to any last interaction with bot, not only the 24 after turning into a subscriber.

    for example, after 24 hours, you could send a broadcast asking a question, and if they reply, you have another 24 hours to send promotional content.

  5. Wiktoria Niedbala

    I tried to apply for the Facebook subscription messaging for all of my three accounts however only one worked. On the other accounts I am unable to click on the advanced messaging features as this tab has been replaced with subscribed apps.

  6. Hi there,

    Does getting approved for subscription messaging show the check mark on widget as pre checked in my online store ? if not is there any way to apply for it ? we believe it will be very beneficial for following up with customers who abandoned their cart!

    Apps say they can no longer apply on the user behalf, does it mean that here is still a way to get a pre checked widget if I applied on my own ?

    Thank you!

    1. Hey Miz – there’s no check mark for subscription messaging as far as a user will see. To apply for subscription messaging permissions follow the steps above. You can use MobileMonkey’s app-level subscription messaging permissions for the time being, especially since the deadline was extended.

  7. Hello! I did not see this information in time. Now I have requested permission 4 times from Facebook and it denies me. Even giving the same information that MM gave in your request Is there any way to get it?

    Do pages created after 01/01/19 can you get it?

  8. If I apply for subscription messaging can I still send promotional messages as a Standard message (eg I meet Standard Messaging guidelines and am inside the 24 hours since last interaction?)

    1. Daniel Threlfall

      Hey Gemma, if you are approved for subscription messaging, you can send non-promotional messages freely whenever you want.

      If you haven’t yet been approved, you can send as many promotional messages as you want within the 24-hour window.

      The only difference that this change makes is this: pages who are not approved for subscription messaging will no longer be able to send chat blasts.

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