“Many people no longer communicate via Facebook, but via WhatsApp“
Original article: Lasse Rouhiainen on Pw20
These are news headlines that I have read lately in the press and it is true that the use of WhatsApp and instant messaging is growing very fast. According to Internet trends analyst Mary Meeker, in the future people will prefer to communicate with small groups using WhatsApp or similar applications, rather than messaging their friends on Facebook and Twitter. This is one of the reasons why I strongly believe that it is a great communication tool for many companies.
In recent times, WhatsApp has become the main means of communication for many people due to the great possibility of quickly sharing texts, photos, videos and audio messages. Many of us communicate with our family and friends through this messaging application because it is the fastest and most efficient way to share information.
I have personally been using it for the past 4 years, not only to communicate with my family, but also to be in contact with collaborators, clients and friends from all over the world. In recent months, several entrepreneurs and business owners have told me that they have started using WhatsApp to communicate with their customers and suppliers and have obtained great results.
In this article I share some reasons why WhatsApp is so recommended for many businessesI also share some interesting success stories.
In this list you can see some interesting data about the growth of WhatsApp and some reasons why I think it will be one of the most important communication tools:
- It currently has more than 500 million users and a large number of them use it daily.
- WhatsApp works with all mobile operating systems and that is why it is so popular.
- Facebook paid 19 billion when it bought WhatsApp in February 2014
- In many countries people no longer use SMS text messages (they are usually paid), but communicate by instant messaging since they can send messages for free.
- In particular, I think that SMS text messages will continue to be used in the future, but only for very specific areas, such as for authenticating your mobile number, for example when you register as a customer at a bank.
- Whatsapp is the leader in mobile instant messaging companies.
- There are people who check their messages more than 100 times a day.
- It is very easy and fast to use
- Curiously, there is much talk about the fact that WhatsApp is a threat to social networks, since people use it more frequently and prefer to communicate with WhatsApp instead of sending messages through Facebook, for example.
These are just some of the many reasons why this system is going to be used more and more as a communication channel.
For your business: WhatsApp Bot Strategy
The benefits of WhatsApp for companies
Today practically all types of companies need to improve their communication with their current clients or their future potential clients. Most of these companies have a difficult time capturing consumers’ attention as there is so much information and so much competition.
Additionally, more mobile phones and tablets are used than before, and that is why companies have to establish a method of mobile communication with their customers.
Why is WhatsApp so effective as a communication channel?
WhatsApp offers a wide variety of benefits for companies:
- Speed: WhatsApp is one of the fastest and most interesting ways to communicate.
- Opening ratio: Messages have a very high open rate while emails have a relatively low rate.
- Frequency of use: As I mentioned before, WhatsApp users check their messages many times during the day. According to some experts up to more than 100 times a day.
- Communication quality: Many companies that I am now advising on WhatsApp marketing confirm that the queries that come through this means are usually of better quality than the queries that come by Email.
- Channel preferred by consumers: From the customers point of view, it is much simpler and easier to send an instant message to a company, instead of calling or sending them an email.
Use of WhatsApp in society and in everyday life
In this list you can see some interesting uses that different organizations make with WhatsApp:
- Rescue teams use it in the mountains of Madrid
- In Asturias, Spain “a telephone is enabled so that deaf people can give warnings through written messages”
- In India police use WhatsApp to communicate better with citizens. This is something that I personally believe will be done in Spain and Latin countries in the future.
Which are the local companies that are already actively using WhatsApp marketing?
A large number of companies are already using WhatsApp as a communication channel. These are micro companies and freelancers who normally have to use their mobile a lot. These are some of the companies that are already using it daily:
- Plumbers, carpenters, mechanics etc.
- Taxi drivers
- Delivery and courier services
What are the companies that are now starting to use WhatsApp Marketing more?
Personally, I believe that in the fall of 2014 and during 2015, a large number of companies will start using WhatsApp as a communication channel, mainly because consumers prefer to contact this way instead of making a call or sending an email.
In this list I share some of the sectors where it is already used.
- Use of WhatsApp in the banking sector: Openbank is the first bank that allows its clients to contact them via WhatsApp
- In the tourism sector: The Barceló Illetas Albatros hotel in Mallorca in Spain provides an exclusive service for its guests where they can communicate with the hotel instantly during their stay at the hotel. This is an excellent example of how to differentiate yourself and offer something totally exclusive for your customers. You can read more here.
- WhatsApp in the media: The media has to innovate and find new ways to capture the attention of consumers. An example of good use of Whatsapp marketing It is the one from Radio Intereconomia that has a WhatsApp broadcast list to keep up to date with economic news. In Latin America, many media outlets will begin to offer a similar service in the future. A few days ago, the newspaper El Día de Argentina, started a service where readers can communicate with journalists through WhatsApp.
- For web stores and E-commerce: There are already many online stores that advertise on their page that the customer can place their order by instant messaging. This option gives confidence to the customer and it is easier to stay in touch after the purchase as well.
- WhatsApp for SMEs: All types of SMEs are beginning to use the application as a communication channel with their current clients and also the web ecommerce are beginning to use it as a means of quick and instant communication for clients. Personally, I think that WhatsApp is a secret weapon for many SMEs who want to continuously innovate and to differentiate themselves from their competition.
Additionally, many companies that have a commercial network usually use WhatsApp groups to facilitate communication between their workers. These are just some of the examples of use for companies, obviously there are more uses that all types of companies can benefit from WhatsApp Marketing.
Even companies that sell to other companies (B2B) will have a great opportunity and can make a profit when they use it correctly.
However, a recommendation to keep in mind for companies is that they should totally avoid the use of WhatsApp to send spam or unwanted messages. For this reason, I recommend that companies start using it to communicate with their current clients, to practice and gradually expand the audience.
WhatsApp Marketing success stories
Additionally, there is a great business opportunity advising and educating companies on the correct use of WhatsApp marketing. Obviously companies are going to make a lot of mistakes when applying instant messaging marketing and that is why there is a real demand to train companies. Some of the most common errors that I see are:
- Misuse of groups
- Misuse of broadcast lists
- Not planning how to establish communication
- Being impulsive and not using it correctly
Here you can see a comment from one of my clients who already uses the application to communicate with their clients and also from some business consultants who advise companies to apply marketing with WhatsApp:
“80% of the communication of our company is carried out through WhatsApp and it helps us to retain our customers and offer them a good personalized service, which Whasapp provides. We could not carry out the activities of our company without it and I highly recommend it for all SMEs that want to increase their number of clients.”Montse Suárez, Mallorca, Spain – ..org
“I currently use WhatsApp Marketing techniques for one of my clients who has an online wine store, and now they receive orders in this way and they find it a very effective resource for their business. Personally, I think that WhatsApp is the fastest and most efficient system in the world and now I am applying it with my clients to promote events, since for that it works much better than Facebook and helps me differentiate myself as a consultant.”Albert Hatero, Barcelona, Spain
The market opportunity to work with Whatsapp marketing This moment is extraordinary and you have a perfect occasion to claim your part in this boom that IM marketing is experiencing.
Now it’s your turn. Have you seen examples of communication with WhatsApp? and what do you think of this opportunity?
He is an international expert in video marketing and social media marketing, a regular speaker at business schools and universities on various topics of online marketing specializing in YouTube, Facebook, and social media marketing. He has helped hundreds of companies and entrepreneurs from more than 30 countries in promoting their businesses on the Internet through the implementation of social media marketing and video marketing.
Amazon Bestseller Two Book Cars: 101 Video Marketing Tips and Strategies for Your Business and Smart Social Media: Guide to Becoming a Successful Social Media Consultant.