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WhatsApp Business - The future of Customer Service and CRM


Source: https://www.whatsapp.com
WhatsApp has been used as a marketing tool and a kind of CRM system for more than 5 years in places such as South America and North America.

Some marketers don’t even know that with the standard WhatsApp we use everyday, you can actually create a broadcast list and send messages to entire groups of people and they will each feel that you are sending the message just to them, just like you would do with an email marketing tool.

In South and North America, some companies will only provide a WhatsApp number as the means for communicating with them and they will use it as a CRM system, creating groups based on the status of the leads.
As a replacement for email marketing as mentioned before, they will send marketing messages to their database. Also, it is used as a method for providing instant Customer Service.

This has been ongoing for over 5 years. I remember teaching people how to do WhatsApp marketing during my workshops but they tended not to take it seriously. They often thought that it was not something that would be very successful, as people don’t like to give out their mobile number easily. Is that really true?

Here in the UK, people will gladly give you their phone number if it means they can get immediate customer service and they will prefer to receive marketing messages via WhatsApp rather than email or SMS.

Now let’s talk about WhatsApp Business...

WhatsApp Business is an Android app (no iOS version yet) which is free to download, and was built with the small business owner in mind, but can be easily applied to any size business using the API and third-party tools.
With the WhatsApp app, businesses can interact with customers easily by using tools to automate, sort, and quickly respond to messages.

Source: https://www.whatsapp.com
If you have an existing WhatsApp Messenger account, you'll have the option to migrate your chat history to your new WhatsApp Business account. We recommend that you make a manual back up before proceeding.


Your chat history can't be migrated back to WhatsApp Messenger if you decide to stop using WhatsApp Business.

You can use both apps, WhatsApp Business, and WhatsApp Messenger. Each app, however, must be linked to its own unique phone number. It's not possible to have one phone number linked to both apps at the same time.
The app is currently being rolled out to the world. If it's not available now, please check Google Play Store again later.

They are planning to launch an iOS version of the app later in May this year. The first version is not guaranteed to have all of the options that the Android version has but it will be in continuous development even after it becomes available.


Why should you consider WhatsApp as a marketing tool?

Speed:

WhatsApp Business provides every possible option for immediate customer support. On top of that, chatting via WhatsApp is much quicker than emailing and your customers are more willing to engage in a conversation to solve their issue or get an answer to their questions as quickly as possible.

On the other hand, you must do whatever it takes to stay available and to respond immediately. Make sure you have the resources to maintain contact with your customers in ASAP mode.

Personal touch:

In WhatsApp Business, you are free to be more informal compared to e-mail. It is a perfect tool for one-to-one communication as you are able to address your customers directly and personally.

Efficient Mobile Marketing:

Why do I say efficient? Because until today, not many companies have even started using mobile marketing through SMS because they feel it is intrusive.
WhatsApp is seen as less intrusive than SMS because it is considered as a type of Social Network. We are used to receiving all kind of silly and useless pictures, videos and even chains from our family and friends.

One thing you need to keep in mind is the effectiveness of WhatsApp due to most people having notifications on their phone when receiving a WhatsApp message and some will even set it up to show the message in the notification. This means that they will see your message whether they really wanted to or not, so with the right message as the first sentence, this will become the most efficient way to communicate with your clients or your database of potential clients.

Some of the tools that come with WhatsApp Business:

1. You can organize your contacts and chats with labels, to help you find them easily

Source: https://www.whatsapp.com
2. Quick replies
Quick replies let you save and reuse messages that you frequently send, so you can easily answer common questions in no time.
Source: https://www.whatsapp.com
3. Away Messaging
Set an away message when you are unable to answer, so your customers know when to expect a response. You can also create a greeting message to introduce your customers to your business.

Source: https://www.whatsapp.com
4. Messaging Statistics
Access important metrics, such as how many of your messages were successfully sent, delivered, and read.

Many tools are being built to integrate WhatsApp which will convert it into a full CRM system.
The last time someone asked me what I thought was the future of social media, I said that chats and video chats will become the only way we communicate and share our lives, not only with family and friends but with businesses too.

This is a whole new level compared to how Customer Service has already been provided using Twitter. Twitter was the very beginning of Immediate Customer Service. Now Customer service is expected to be immediate, even our tweets took some time to be replied to. 

Now due to bots and chats they want it immediately which is a very different Customer Service to the one we were used to, a service without the need to waste precious time on the phone to an automated system, choosing between multiple options, then waiting a further half an hour, in many cases listening to terrible music, just to ask a basic question about a product we bought or a service we are already receiving, or not.


Mili Ponce

Keynote Speaker on Digital Marketing and Entrepreneurship, Social Media Strategist, Trainer, Writer, Blogger, Mother, Daughter, Granddaughter, Dreamer.
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WhatsApp Business - The future of Customer Service and CRM Reviewed by Mili Ponce on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 Rating: 5

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