WhatsApp Marketing always seemed like a myth as part of a digital marketing strategy for us. Recently a client of ours, Umuzi Week of Festivals, wanted to run a competition via WhatsApp to promote their Misty Water Music Festival.
The goal was to get at least 500 people to enter the competition to win tickets to the festival with the qualifying criteria being that they share the competition with a friend using WhatsApp messenger.
Making use of the provided messenger platform API, we started to develop a website service to accommodate this requirement.
Step 1 – The Entry Form
Since the competition was going to take place via WhatsApp, the first goal was to create a mobile micro-site for the competition. The strategy was to get the contact details and provide the entrants with a few general questions about the festival to complete.
The entrant was then provided with the option to either share a pre-generated message via WhatsApp or compose their own message to share.
Pre-Generated WhatsApp Message Option
Personal WhatsApp Message Option
The received WhatsApp Message
Over a period of 20 days from the first entry and sharing of the competition over WhatsApp, the target of 500 entries was reached.
- 50% of the users reached the WhatApp sharing page from the initial offset.
- Within 10 – 30 minutes on average of them sharing the competition via WhatsApp we could see their referrals visiting the site and starting to enter the competition.
- 25% of the users made use of the links provided to visit the main event site.
- The competition was also promoted via Facebook which only resulted in 24% of the referral traffic. The remaining 76% of traffic was direct traffic from the WhatsApp referrals.
What we learned
With WhatsApp not having a dedicated API to track campaigns of this nature, we had to write our own method to track users and conversions. The great thing about that was that it gave us more insight into the behavioral patterns of users based on our own rules, rather than having to rely on the data provided by “3rd party” stats.
We provided the option for users to share the competition by writing their own message. The idea behind this was to allow people to share and speak in their own tongue/slang. This would avoid the shared message to come across as spam. We found that only 2% of users made use of this option. Users preferred to make use of the pre-generated message, even though it was the second option to select.
What is next?
WhatsApp is here to stay and is currently an untapped marketing tool in our view. Based on the results we have seen with this campaign over a short period of time, we feel that it’s currently a stronger tool than traditional online ads and email marketing campaigns.
Right now we are very positive and excited to introduce it as a marketing tool and make it part of the Brand Barn pool of services.
Drop us an email if you are interested to run a WhatsApp campaign with us.