Instagram Direct Messages

Updated 1 week ago by Zach Banov

The Instagram Direct Message channel lets you receive and reply to direct messages and story mentions from within Gorgias.

How do I know if I have access to Instagram Direct Messages?

As of June 3rd, Instagram only allows Instagram Direct Messages for Instagram Business accounts with 10,000-100,000 followers.

If your account meets this requirement and is not on a legacy plan then you will automatically be granted access to Instagram Direct Messages.

To check if you are on a legacy plan, visit your Facebook integration settings. If your settings do not include the Upgrade button shown below, then you are not on a legacy plan.

How to activate the Instagram Direct Message channel in Gorgias

You can add an Instagram Direct Message integration through your Facebook integration.

  1. In Instagram Business messenger, go to Settings -> Privacy -> Messages and make sure your Allow Access to Messages setting is set to Active if it is not, then toggle it to active.
  1. In Gorgias, go to Settings -> Integrations -> Facebook, Messenger & Instagram and click on desired Facebook page
  2. Click the green Reconnect button. This will take you to a Facebook page and ask you to reconnect the account again, so an admin of the Facebook page must do this step.
  3. Check the Enable Instagram direct message checkbox and click Save changes.

Once you save the integration updates, you should start receiving Instagram Direct Message tickets immediately.

Note that your Facebook page needs to be associated with an Instagram account. Please check the screenshot below.
  1. After following these instructions, you should see one of three options on your Enable Instagram direct message settings page.
If you see a different option than the ones shown below, you have likely missed a step in the activation instructions.

Access Granted: Account meets follower requirements and is not on a legacy plan

Access Denied: The account does not meet the follower requirements

If you don't meet this follower requirement, don't worry! Facebook will be granted access to all Instagram Business accounts over the coming months. More information regarding the estimated timeline can be found in the FAQ section of this article.

Access Denied: Account is on a legacy plan

If you are seeing an Upgrade button in your settings, you are currently on an outdated billing plan and do not have access to new features like Instagram Direct Messages. To gain access, you will need to upgrade from a legacy plan to one of our current plans.

Functionalities

When a customer mentions you in an Instagram story or sends you a Direct Message via Instagram, we will create a ticket in Gorgias. You can respond to this message the same way you respond to chats or Facebook Messenger tickets.

Please note that we cannot pull story content into Gorgias. Instead, we provide a hyperlink to the story. Responding to story mention tickets will open a direct message that references that story mention in the first response.

Responding to Instagram Comments via Direct Message

You can also privately respond to an Instagram comment, which will create a new Instagram Direct message ticket in Gorgias.

To do so, open an Instagram comment ticket, hover over the customer's message, and select the Direct message button, which is pictured below.

Selecting this button will open a pop-up text editor, which you must use to write out your first response and initiate the Instagram Direct message conversation.

Only the first Direct message response you send will be sent from the original Instagram comment ticket. After sending this first Instagram Direct message, you will be taken to a new Instagram direct message ticket in Gorgias, where you will continue the rest of the conversation.

The new ticket will be populated with a "Respond to an Instagram Comment" event, which will include the comment you were responding and a link to the Instagram comment ticket where you intiated the conversation. It will also include the Instagram Direct message response from the previous step.

The rest of the conversation will take place on the new Instagram Direct message ticket and will function the same as any other Instagram Direct message ticket.

Frequently asked questions

When will all accounts have access to Instagram Direct Messages?

The Instagram team has chosen to roll out Instagram Direct Message access in three waves, which are based on the Instagram Business account's follower count.

When a new wave begins, we will announce it and all newly eligible Instagram Business accounts will immediately have access to Instagram Direct Messages.

Wave 1: 06/03 -> All Instagram Business accounts with 10,000 - 100,000 followers can access Instagram Direct Messages.

Wave 2: (Estimated) Early July-> All Instagram Business accounts with 1,000 - 100,000 followers can access Instagram Direct Messages.

Wave 3: (Estimated) End of Q3 -> All Instagram Business accounts, including those with greater than 100,000 followers and less than 1,000 followers, can access Instagram Direct Messages.

The dates for Wave 2 and Wave 3 are rough estimations provided to us by Instagram and are subject to change. It's quite possible that these waves could begin earlier or later.

Regardless, we will announce when a new wave begins so you can start using Instagram Direct Messages as quickly as possible.

I have the right number of followers but I still can't turn on Instagram Direct Messages. What should I do?

There are a number of reasons you may not have access to Instagram direct messages, despite meeting the follower count requirements.

Issue 1: Error messages falsely states that the account doesn't meet follower requirements

If you have the right number of followers but see the message above, there are two reasons this may occur.

1. You haven't changed your Instagram settings to give us access to DMs. To fix this, you need to repeat step one in the installation guide, changing your privacy settings in Instagram. Once changed, you must then click the reconnect button in the bottom right of the screen, which should remove the error.

2. You are not using an Instagram Business account. Unfortunately, Instagram does not currently allow you to connect Instagram accounts that are not Instagram Business accounts. If this is the case, then you will need to create an Instagram Business account to use the integration.

Issue 2: Error messages say you do not have the neccesary permissions to access Instagram direct messages

If you see two warnings, one on top of the settings and one beside the Instagram Direct Message settings page, then you need to update your permissions to use this feature. To do so, visit this url, delete the Gorgias app on that page, and then click the green Reconnect button.

Issue 3: Error message says you need to reconnect your integration to check for eligibility

If you only see one warning with the text "Reconnect your integration to check your eligibility for the Instagram Messaging API", then you need to click the green button titled Reconnect below the Facebook channel settings options.

Issue 4: Instagram feature is blocked by a paywall

If you see an orange paywall button, titled Upgrade, to the right of the Instagram direct message setting, then you are currently on an outdated plan and will not gain access to new features.

To access Instagram direct messages, as well as upcoming features like the helpcenter, voice, SMS, and more then you must upgrade from your depreciated plan to the current version of that plan.

Why do some of my messages contain the following message: "Media not available due to new privacy rules in Europe"?

Due to new privacy regulations, Instagram limits the ability to send media to and from EU countries. If either the Gorgias user or the customer is located in an EU country and they send a message containing a photo or video, the following error message may be displayed. This is a temporary policy by Facebook and full media capabilities will be accessible to EU users once this policy is revoked.

When I open a Direct Message in Gorgias, will the customer see a read receipt on their end that we have opened it?

No, opening an Instagram Direct Message ticket in Gorgias will not trigger a read receipt for the customer.

Can I like story mentions or Instagram Direct Messages?

This feature will be arriving in the V2 of the Instagram Direct Message integration, which is coming soon.

Will Instagram Direct Messages be shown on the top left of the navigation bar like chat and Facebook Messenger tickets?

Yes, Instagram Direct Message ticket notifications will show up on the navigation bar, similar to chats and Facebook Messenger tickets. You can distinguish between them and chat or messenger tickets by the channel icon, which appears as an Instagram logo with a small badge indicating direct messages.

Can I import previous Instagram Direct Message history?

Unfortunately, this not a feature that we currently offer. That being said, if we see significant interest, then we can definitely pursue it. If you'd like us to start building this feature, then you can submit the request to our public product roadmap and we will start looking into it!

Can story mentions be shown in Gorgias instead of having to click a link and view them in a separate tab?

Unfortunately not. Instagram API specifically prohibits us from rendering the story inside the application. Once they open up the ability to render the story in-app, then we will absolutely consider building out this feature, based on interest.

Will Instagram DM tickets be separated into Primary and General like they are in the Instagram app?

Not at the moment due to limitations in the Instagram Direct Message API but it is something we are very interested in pursuing. Our engineers are currently researching more creative ways to find that information but it is not specifically offered in the documentation.

Can I initiate an Instagram Direct message conversation?

Right now, you can only initiate an Instagram Direct message conversation in response to a specific Instagram comment. If this is a feature that you would like, please submit the request to our public product roadmap and we can start looking into the feasibility of this feature.


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