In the four years since Facebook acquired Instagram, the companies have shown little synergy. But that's about to change—for businesses, at least.
The social media giant this week announced an easier way for companies to manage interactions across Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger.
A new unified inbox is rolling out now to global users of the Pages Manager mobile app. To get started, simply connect your Facebook and Instagram accounts; those already synced via Instagram ads will receive the update automatically.
Organizations can now respond to enquiries within a single application: Quickly scan Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram channels individually or collectively for missed communications. Then reply to comments, visitor posts, reviews, and messages in one place.
"The updated inbox makes it easier than ever to communicate with customers at any time and in any location," Facebook's business blog said.
It also means consumers have more options for filing a grievance or sharing praise; the company is just as likely to see your message if it's posted as an Instagram or Facebook comment.
App users can also see basic information about customers by simply tapping the person's name to view their public profile and previous interactions with the business. According to Engadget, corporations may choose to apply labels—"urgent," "regular," "headache"—for easy identification.
"Use that knowledge to personalize your communications with them," Facebook suggested of the feature, currently available for all social network interactions in the inbox.
Over time, the company will add "additional engagement types" to improve speed and ease.
"We're committed to equipping businesses with the tools to have friendly, fluid conversations with people, and want to help you save time by making that process simple and easy," Facebook said. "We think that the updated inbox is bringing us closer to that goal."
There is no word on whether Faceboo will roll this feature out to its billion+ regular users who are currently forced to operate Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram separately.
The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.