Top 5 reasons why you should start selling on WhatsApp

Introduction

There are 2 billion people in the world that use WhatsApp every month [1]. They use it to keep in touch with family and friends, send memes, and, maybe, naughty pictures too.

But there are few businesses in the world that use WhatsApp to sell to their customers. The main two reasons why businesses haven’t started selling before on WhatsApp are data protection and customer habits.

Data protection can be ensured by being transparent and getting customers’ consent. Consumer habits need time to change. Customers need time to adapt to this new way of interacting with companies online and businesses need time to adapt their processes to a change in consumer habits. 

That’s why WhatsApp hadn’t built or had its API (a “bridge” businesses can use to retrieve/send information) locked until 2018, when they opened it for a few pre-approved businesses [2]. Ever since then, WhatsApp has launched some experiments in Brazil, India, Indonesia, and Mexico to slowly implement new features. For example, a product catalogue, payments, message templates, automated answers, and more. Today, almost every business can access the WhatsApp API and there are a bunch of StartUps building software to help businesses sell on WhatsApp. The 2020 pandemic has helped accelerate this adoption process and change in consumer habits.

But now you might say something like: “WhatsApp shouldn’t have annoying ads”. And… you are right. 

On the one hand, we will most likely never see pop up ads in WhatsApp like the ones that appear on Google or Youtube. Because if Facebook, now Meta, allowed this to happen, people would massively migrate to other messaging apps. But on the other hand, Meta acquired WhatsApp for 19 billion (that’s nine zeros after 19) in 2014 [3] and you have to understand that they will want to – and need to – monetize this investment. In fact, they are already trying to do it.

How are they doing it? They are allowing companies to contact WhatsApp users and send them reminders, promotional content, and or other types of messages with their consent.

To sum it up, WhatsApp Marketing is inevitable. But we have an opportunity to change the way we do marketing and adapt it to this new channel. A second chance. A more transparent, personalized, and simplified way. Much better than the intrusive Social Media ads that rise anxiety levels or the annoying Emails that flood your inbox.

Let me give you the top 5 reasons why your company needs to start selling on WhatsApp today.

Top 5 reasons

1. BLUE OCEAN OPPORTUNITY.

This is literally a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to enter a new channel with few competitors and put your brand out there for doing something different. Not to mention the high ROI. 

Just think about the first people who did Email Marketing and Social Media Paid advertising. Those people are probably millionaires now. They aced a skill before anyone else did. Their businesses grew extremely fast. The rest is history.

WhatsApp today is like Email Marketing in the early 2000s or Social Media ads in the early 2010s.

2. MORE INTERACTION.

Brands not only need organic engagement to build a community and increase sales, but also to get feedback about the experiences of their clients to improve their products and services.

And this engagement needs to happen in a frictionless way. No landing pages. No long surveys. No 1000 questions.

The only sustainable and frictionless way to do this is as if we were talking to a friend. Sending a WhatsApp message.

3. MORE PERSONALIZATION.

Quit selling the wrong products to the wrong type of customers. Not only it’s purposeless, it also makes your brand look bad.

Personalization is not the future. It’s already the present. 80% of the adult population want and expect personalization from retailers [4]. We have tons of data available. We need to learn how to use it in our favor while being transparent and adapting to our customers’ preferences.

Cut the bullshit of Email Newsletters. Send personalized information directly to your customer’s DMs.

4. SIMPLIFY. LESS IS MORE.

Quit SPAMMING. Skip the unnecessary bullshit. We have a really short time attention span. According to Statista [5], in 2021 we spent – on average – 10 seconds looking at promotional emails. But anyway, who reads promotional emails every day?

Just get to the point. Send only relevant information in an easy-to-understand format. Combine short videos, text, and images. WhatsApp is perfect for that.

5. BE REAL.

Be transparent about your values. Integrate the identity of your brand in your WhatsApp messages. Use this channel to share information that lets your customers know who are the people behind your project. It’s an opportunity to connect. But, don’t forget the points above. Be brief. Personalize this information.

Remember this:

Customers buy from people, not from brands.
People buy from friends, not from strangers.

 

On a final note, my name is Alberto Lazarov. I’m the founder of Palumba Digital Marketing and I can help your company sell on WhatsApp.

No bullshit. Just results.

If you want to know whether your business is fit for WhatsApp Marketing, book a meeting with me. 

See you soon! ;P

LINKS

1. We Are Social, & Hootsuite, & DataReportal. (January 26, 2022). Most popular global mobile messenger apps as of January 2022, based on number of monthly active users (in millions) [Graph]. Statista. Retrieved October 03, 2022, from https://www-statista-com.ie.idm.oclc.org/statistics/258749/most-popular-global-mobile-messenger-apps/

2. Constine, J. (2018, August 1). WhatsApp finally earns money by charging businesses for slow replies. TechCrunch. Retrieved October 3, 2022, from https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/01/whatsapp-business-api 

 3. Olson, P. (2014, October 6). Facebook Closes $19 Billion WhatsApp Deal. Forbes. Retrieved October 3, 2022, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/parmyolson/2014/10/06/facebook-closes-19-billion-whatsapp-deal/?

4. Lindecrantz, E., Pian Gi, M. T., & Zerbi, S. (2020, April 28). Personalizing the customer experience: Driving differentiation in retail. McKinsey & Company. Retrieved October 3, 2022, from https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/retail/our-insights/personalizing-the-customer-experience-driving-differentiation-in-retail

 5. MarketingCharts. (October 29, 2021). Average time people spend reading brand emails from 2011 to 2021 (in seconds) [Graph]. Statista. Retrieved October 3, 2022, from https://www-statista-com.ie.idm.oclc.org/statistics/1273288/time-spent-brand-emails/

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