People have held 17B video chats on Messenger so far in 2017

Brands take note: Facebook’s messaging service Messenger isn’t only for text-based conversations.

People held 17 billion video chats on Messenger between January and November 2017, the company announced on Wednesday. That’s twice as many video chats as they held on Messenger in all of 2016, and the influx of video calls is likely due to Messenger’s adoption of group video calling in December 2016.

The popularity of video calling on Messenger may entice brands to try their hand at hosting group video calls through their own Messenger accounts. Weird as that may sound, it’s not inconceivable that people would be willing to participate. Maybe they wouldn’t care to join a Messenger-hosted video focus group (they might), but they may be lured by the opportunity to have some face time with a celebrity spokesperson.

In addition to the video chat stat, Messenger put out some other figures that may be of interest to brands looking to make Messenger into more of a marketing vehicle.

On any given day, people participate in more than seven billion conversations on Messenger, 260 million of which are new conversations that were started that day. That indicates that Messenger’s more than 1.3 billion monthly users have not maxed out the number of conversations they’re willing to shuffle among, which could be an encouraging sign for brands looking to be among them.

If and when brands are exchanging messages with people, they may want to send messages that contain more than words. Through November 2017, people shared more than 500 billion emojis and 18 billion GIFs on Messenger.

But even if brands aren’t among the Messenger accounts that people are interested in talking with directly, their Messenger bots can still be in the mix through Messenger’s Chat Extensions feature that allows people to interact with a brand’s bot while in a conversation with one or more of their friends.

To that end, the more friends in a Messenger conversation, the better. On average, people are creating 2.5 million group conversations a day, and the typical group chat includes 10 people.


About The Author

Tim Peterson
Tim Peterson, Third Door Media's Social Media Reporter, has been covering the digital marketing industry since 2011. He has reported for Advertising Age, Adweek and Direct Marketing News. A born-and-raised Angeleno who graduated from New York University, he currently lives in Los Angeles. He has broken stories on Snapchat's ad plans, Hulu founding CEO Jason Kilar's attempt to take on YouTube and the assemblage of Amazon's ad-tech stack; analyzed YouTube's programming strategy, Facebook's ad-tech ambitions and ad blocking's rise; and documented digital video's biggest annual event VidCon, BuzzFeed's branded video production process and Snapchat Discover's ad load six months after launch. He has also developed tools to monitor brands' early adoption of live-streaming apps, compare Yahoo's and Google's search designs and examine the NFL's YouTube and Facebook video strategies.