Instagram DMs: A Channel Customers Love

Khoros Alumni (Retired)

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Trust us. You don't want to overlook Instagram.

If your brand is wondering whether they should turn on Instagram DMs via Khoros, first ask yourself, "Are your customers using Instagram?" 

ParkerH_2-1651000255184.png"Many of our clients are on Instagram and we needed to find a more efficient way to respond to the hundreds of inquiries we receive daily. The Messenger API for Instagram has enabled our team to easily resolve queries received via Instagram messaging, comments and story mentions within the platform, providing a seamless experience for the client.”

- Hilary Lin, Sephora



Give customers the private support they need in the channels they love.

A key factor in driving positive “voice of customer” brand loyalty and increasing the levels of customer satisfaction is having a plan and process in place to help customers from the get go. A simple IG customer Care playbook will make a massive difference in turning casual shoppers into customers for life. 

Consider the opportunities that Instagram DM provides to help your customer where and when they need it.

  • If someone is following your brand, they often expect to be considered a customer; this offers an opportunity for personalized support.
  • If you already know they are a customer, they expect you to handle any needs in any channel they are on, especially customer service.
  • Providing excellent support, both publicly and privately is a great way to build loyalty and brand awareness.

Whether it’s text, photos, videos, or voice chats, Instagram DM’s end-to-end” encryption means no one but your care team and your customer can see any data shared. This attention to the protection of privacy not only improves customer loyalty and trust, but ensures your data is equally secure. 

Customers want to feel valued and are more likely to promote and advocate brands that offer support in their channel of choice. The various forms of social media draw people in from all walks of life for meaningful connection. From liking and commenting on their friend’s vacation to shopping with your brand, Instagram DMs through Khoros could be the missing puzzle piece to providing a customer experience that genuinely fosters engagement.

Instagram DM provides opportunities to "get to know your customer" beyond Care.

  • If someone follows your brand, you already know they have some interest.
  • If they have already purchased from you, you can access their style.
  • If you follow them back, it is easy to see what interests they have to offer a personalized buying experience. 

Why not slide onto their DM and give them a discount code for their next purchase? Based on what you have observed about their interests and past purchases, you could even set up a new marketing strategy for social media with Instagram at its core.

With great information comes great responsibility. 

While you can access all of your customers' public Instagram data at the touch of a button, it’s important to balance your outreach with your customers. While some customers may love to have your brand’s DMs flash in their inbox, some customers might be turned off of your brand. 

  •  Try to avoid sending a mass DM to all your customers. A better strategy could be using the current customer data to send personalized DMs to only your most engaged customers. 
  • Depending on your brand, use call deflection strategies to get your customers the support they need as quickly as possible. 
  • Limit the amount of personal data you use to send messages to your customers. Too personalized of a message can easily dissuade a customer as it could increase engagement. 
  • In simple terms, everyone loves when their friend remembers their birthday. Few people love when their friend knows how they organize their sock drawer. 


Support customers in Instagram DMs, even if you have a small Care team.

ExampleIGDM2.pngInstagram direct messages (IG DM) could be considered less than ideal for your customer support systems from a business perspective. However, your customers are already liking, sharing, and posting about your brand in IG. If you plan on conducting any manner of business on IG, then chances are that your customer buying your product or service on Instagram will also seek customer support in the same place. 

At first glance, a tidal wave of volume may overload your team’s capacity to provide meaningful support. Despite the initial frenzy of a thousand messages, a beautifully simple trend will emerge via Khoros. 

Across your existing channels, you will discover that similar questions or brand topics repeat themselves. While utilizing the right tools for your brand, even a small care team can handle a thousand requests for support when the same six questions constantly repeat themselves. 

Your agent experience goes a long way in creating a positive customer experience.

  • Having tools and processes for agents to quickly find and use answers will make it much easier for your customers and create a more positive experience! 
  • Creating that positive experience can often be achieved via automation, bots and suggested responses, and an online Community.
  • Online Communities with public knowledge bases can significantly improve customer self-service and agent workload!


Change is only as complicated as you make it.  

No matter what it is, change can be a complicated process. The old saying, “if it’s not broken, then don’t fix it” can ring especially true here. Maybe your customer care team is new to Instagram or maybe it’s only been a few months since your brand as a whole created an Instagram page. It can be unnerving to change a working system and adding Instagram to your care system is a prime example of this. However, our world of customer engagement is changing and Khoros is here to help you change with it.

Using Change Management planning and optimizing existing processes, you can quickly begin to ramp up the tasks necessary to take on this new channel with as few change friction points as possible. Take advantage of your Khoros tools such as throttling, welcome responses, and priorities to reduce the workload on your Care teams. 

New to private messaging? Look at your public messages for the best initial strategyWith Khoros's analytics capabilities, you can provide personalized service while measuring response times to derive actionable insights.  

Based on your other social channels, you can anticipate the types of conversations your current user base will start and will be able to prepare your agents accordingly.

It is always a solid goal to prepare your agents for predicted volume, the actual amount of predicted volume for IG DM’s could go one of two ways. It will most likely follow the amount of volume in your channels. However, for a clearer picture examine the number of your engaged IG customers to better predict volume for your IG Care channel.

Whether conversations are via social, community, or call center, you can quickly determine your top call drivers and high-priority conversations. Based on this, you can begin to create your SLAs. You will soon notice that customers who receive accurate answers on the first try will create positive sentiment and improve CSAT.

This, in turn, makes for a more positive agent experience


You're ready for Instagram DM!

Be sure you've reviewed these necessary resources before authenticating an Instagram account.

Get a jump start on configuring your team flow. Khoros expert and product coach Lindsey will guide you through the various ways to use this new channel in Khoros the most effective way possible. 

If you are using Marketing Inbox for responding, the following video will help you enable the Instagram Direct Message Channel, add streams, and create Topic queues for Instagram Direct Message.