Messaging applications such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are cheaper to use and handier than regular text messaging. You probably use them to communicate with friends or family, but did you know that they make for handy business tools, too?

Why use messaging apps in business?
Messaging apps can enhance your company’s marketing capabilities by leaps and bounds. WhatsApp, the most popular messaging app today, has two billion users around the world. Facebook Messenger and WeChat have 1.3 billion and 1 billion users, respectively. These figures paint a good picture of how many potential customers your business can reach with the right instant messenger.

In case you’re facing difficulties marketing your products or services to millennials and younger customers, messenger apps can help you out. Facebook Messenger dominates in the United States — among its users, 25% fall in the 25–34 age range, while more than 12% are 18–24 years old. Among WhatsApp users, on the other hand, 44% fall in the 18–24 age bracket, while 31% are 25–29 years old.

Besides reach, what sets messaging apps apart from their lower-tech precursors is their versatility. With features like voice and video calling, conference calls, file sharing, and augmented reality (AR) filters, nothing stops you from implementing highly creative — and effective — marketing campaigns. What’s more, the list of features they offer just keeps expanding over time, providing you with more and better ways to appeal to your target audience.

How can you use instant messengers to market your brand?
You can incorporate messaging apps into so many marketing strategies, not just to attract and convert leads, but also to provide your customers with a positive experience. Here are three tips you can follow:

1. Deliver content straight to your audience
Many businesses still deliver branded and marketing content, such as newsletters and promos, through email. It’s a time-tested method, but email may no longer be the only and ideal channel for this strategy.

An experiment by HubSpot found that delivering content through Facebook Messenger resulted in a 242% higher open rate and 619% higher click rate than sending content via email. These figures mean that your intended audience are not only likely to read your message, but they’re also likely to access the attached content and engage your brand.

2. Provide personalized answers to inquiries
Messenger apps let you receive and send messages in real time, which makes them great for providing immediate answers to your customers’ questions or concerns. Unlike text messages, they also cost virtually nothing to use since they simply tap into a fixed internet subscription.

But what if your business receives inquiries from so many people or during ungodly hours outside of your employees’ shift? Messenger apps support chatbots, which are software designed to perform preprogrammed actions, such as answer questions or redirect users to useful web pages. These bots enrich customer experience by providing quick resolution to your clients’ concerns in your place.

Related: Reasons to automate small-business marketing

Furthermore, thanks to technologies like machine learning and AR, chatbots are now capable of providing increasingly personalized services to users. Fashion brand H&M, for instance, uses a chatbot that doubles as a stylist. Just chat with the company via Kik and their chatbot will ask questions about your desired look. The software will then offer recommendations based on your answers.

3. Send out follow-ups and reminders
You can set up your Facebook page to enable users to set appointments with your business. Once that’s done, you can then set up Facebook Messenger’s automated responses feature. Anyone who schedules a meeting via your page will now receive follow-up messages reminding them of their appointment with you. It’s a small gesture, but one that your customers, especially those who find it hard to keep track of their schedule, will really appreciate.

Partnering with an expert can help you get the most out of your messaging apps. At Tech Squared, our experts can help you find the best app for your company’s needs, and implement measures to make it as useful and as secure as possible.

Find out how you can empower your business further by downloading this free eBook today.


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