Found in 180 countries and boasting over 2 billion users, WhatsApp is the messaging market leader in 133 countries. Especially in countries such as India, Brazil, The Netherlands, Spain, and Italy, the most popular messaging app is WhatsApp. South Africans will not be surprised to learn that Africa is so dominated by WhatsApp that it has increased the continent’s internet usage. (WhatsApp is responsible for 50% of data usage in Zimbabwe!)
It is no wonder, then, that businesses have wanted to get in on the action as part of their digital marketing strategy.
WhatsApp for Business
Launched just over two years ago, in 2018, WhatsApp Business is a marketing tool which is:
- Highly targeted. The WhatsApp Filter Tool can filter one million numbers in a just few minutes.
- Accessible. A perfect example of “mobile-first” design. The WhatsApp location service allows you to send a map with your location to people on the go.
- Media rich. The mobile marketing application supports videos, images, GIFs, text documents, and vCards. WhatsApp technology creates customer-centric experiences.
- Free. While the API version has additional features which come at a price, the basic WhatsApp for Business is ideal for small business owners who have a tighter budget. Despite being free, it still offers a verified WhatsApp Account, text modules, product catalogue, opening hours, and tools to automate, sort, and quickly respond to messages.
Latest Features in WhatsApp
In recent months, WhatsApp has yet again upped its game. Some noteworthy new features include:
- Animated stickers. With Facebook’s eye on merging their messaging apps, this quick way of communicating will already be familiar to Messenger and Facebook users.
- Video focus. The advent of COVID-19 bumped WhatsApp’s video call capacity to eight participants. To focus on someone, press and hold to maximise their video to full screen.
- QR codes. Avoid the pressure of fumbling with your keypad, and add new contacts using QR codes instead.