How To Best Use WhatsApp For Your Startup

With more than 2 billion active users today, WhatsApp has become the most popular messaging app in the world. However, it’s no longer just being used for texting friends and connecting with loved ones across countries. It’s become a medium for conversational marketing, driven by people’s increasing expectations for convenience and tailored digital experiences.

WhatsApp Business was specifically created for small businesses, to help them connect with and support customers with immediate and personalized customer service. Millions of businesses today are already using WhatsApp Business to build meaningful connections with potential audiences, nurture their relationships with existing ones, and successfully promote their brands.

The catch is that promoting your business on WhatsApp isn’t as easy as other marketing mediums. This is because WhatsApp doesn't serve ads and its encrypted messaging system makes targeting extremely limited. However, a lot of companies have undertaken some unconventional marketing campaigns and come up with innovative and effective ways to reach customers on WhatsApp, engage in exceptional customer service, and facilitate one-on-one communications. If you are an entrepreneur who wants to learn to leverage WhatsApp for business use, or if you’re simply considering the idea, let us help you explore why adding a WhatsApp Business account into your company’s social strategy is a great way to build a network and manage customer relations.

Why use WhatsApp for business?

There are clear benefits to using WhatsApp for business:

  • Since WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app in the world, with over 2 billion active users spread across 180 countries, you can expand your global reach. A large potential audience makes it easier to engage with new prospects who are not aware of your business.
  • Research by Zendesk found that leading companies, when compared to their peers, offer customer support across twice as many channels. You can undoubtedly improve customer experience by using WhatsApp, which provides a seamless platform for supporting customers.
  • It is versatile in that customers can be messaged in groups of up to 256 members, while one-on-one communication can also be used to build relationships with users and strengthen brand loyalty.
  • WhatsApp’s messaging capability can make multitasking easier for your internal team of customer support personnel. This way, they will be more likely to engage with customers compared to other traditional customer service methods and allow you to create an atmosphere of enhanced employee satisfaction.
  • Direct messaging streamlines the sales pipeline and cuts down on operating expenses, helping you increase overall profitability.
  • Unlike other direct messaging apps, WhatsApp Business was specifically formulated for businesses, and features several tools that you can use to elevate communication with customers. Later on, we will discuss these tips and tricks for marketing on WhatsApp.

How can I use WhatsApp for personal business?

First things first, you will need to download the WhatsApp Business application and create a business account. This is relatively easy to do. All you need to fill in is your business’s phone number, name, a profile picture, and a category that best describes your business. You can add in more essential information about your business and manage addresses, hours, and websites in your settings. Once you’re done setting up your account, you can place “click-to-WhatsApp” ads on promoted content on your Facebook and Instagram accounts. After all, there’s no point in creating a WhatsApp customer support system if no one knows you’re using it.

You might be wondering, what is the best way to use WhatsApp for business?

There are a variety of ways in which you can take advantage of this often underestimated platform. Here are the top effective ways to use WhatsApp for business in 2023:

  1. Quick replies

    A lot of companies today use WhatsApp for customer support solely to avoid excruciatingly long phone calls and never-ending email threads. Chats are quick and avoid waiting periods on both ends. This helps brands create a seamless customer experience. Above all, people generally prefer texting over calls and emails and they are also more likely to get back to you quickly. Moreover, studies have found that the faster businesses respond to customer service requests, the higher the willingness of customers to pay for their products/services.

    Under the Business Tools section on WhatsApp, you can click on “Quick Replies”, which allows you to create up to 50 unique replies accessible via keyboard shortcuts. Making quick replies for frequently asked questions like “What time do you open?” or “Is this item in stock?” is a great way to make your work easier.

  2. Labels

    This is another feature on WhatsApp that lets you organize inbound messages and contacts, just like you might use labels to categorize your emails. The purpose of labels is to help you sort messages by their urgency and recognize returning customers. Depending on your business’s strategy, you can either choose pre-programmed labels or create ones that make sense to you. Regardless, it’s best to have a dedicated label for unresolved issues to help you remember them as you work on other customer queries.

  3. Away messages

    Quality customer service does not necessarily mean that you are available 24/7. It’s equally important to set appropriate expectations with your customers about business hours and give yourself a break every now and then. Away messages is an automated WhatsApp feature that helps customers get responses immediately even when you are unavailable and lets them know when you will be available. Away messages can be used:

    • When customers message outside business hours
    • During holidays and extended closures
    • When receiving high volumes of inbound messages
  4. Target groups

    Given that WhatsApp users are generally involved in tons of family, friends’, and office groups, you too can create a targeted group to pitch potential and existing customers about your products. Of course, the posts should be periodic, spam-free, and the group should only include people who are/would be interested in purchasing your product.

  5. Nontraditional campaigns

    While other social media channels have an algorithm in place that boosts your content to users, WhatsApp requires that users message you first before you can reach out to them. In order to motivate users to message you or join your groups, they need to gain something worthwhile. This leaves room for exploring and advertising using various types of nontraditional campaigns to attract users. For instance, you could create a landing page on your website, displaying your WhatsApp number and offering to send coupon codes to anyone who messages.

  6. Status

    WhatsApp’s uploading status feature lets users post images and short videos. This can be a great way for businesses to promote themselves and attract customers. However, here too it’s essential to avoid spamming and maintain consistency.

    A good way to use your WhatsApp status would be by sharing demonstration videos of your products.

  7. Broadcasts lists

    This feature of WhatsApp lets you send the same message to multiple customers at once. A customer can be added to a broadcast list if they add your business to their address book. You can create separate broadcast lists for your existing and potential customers, and send appropriate marketing messages to them. It also makes retargeting easier. Keep in mind that just like some of the other features, it’s best to use this one sparingly in order to avoid annoying customers.

  8. Catalog

    You can create a detailed catalog of your product, especially if you have an e-commerce store, and make it easier for customers to access your products and your latest offers whenever they want. Each product can have its own detailed description and be categorized just like in a paper catalog. Plus, with each item, you can include a product code and the link to the product on your website.

    If a customer asks you about a specific item, or if you wish to provide an alternative for items that have been sold out, you can simply share the item you want by sending a link through WhatsApp Business. You can also use this feature to send select customers updates about products that are on sale.

  9. Cart

    WhatsApp also gives business owners a chance to provide their customers a seamless checkout experience through their cart feature, which lets them complete purchases in-app. All you need to do is enable the “Add to Cart” feature within your catalog.

  10. Message formats

    To ease communication for businesses and customers, WhatsApp offers various message formats like photos, videos, locations, GIFs, PDFs, voice recordings, etc. This way, you’re not limited to answering customer inquiries with text alone and can send video tutorials or PDF guides to help users deal with more complex problems. On the flip side, users can better explain their queries through screenshots and videos.

Using WhatsApp Business for conversational marketing can be a powerful tool for small to medium businesses for elevating customer service and improving communication. WhatsApp’s versatility makes it a great addition to any business’s social media strategy and encourages companies to come up with innovative marketing campaigns. With all the tools and features that WhatsApp has to offer, you should definitely jump on the bandwagon and take advantage of the platform to strategically engage your target audience. We hope you gained something from our article on how to best use WhatsApp for your organization!

At Design Master, one of the best social media marketing companies in Kuwait, we help businesses facilitate a successful digital marketing strategy by helping them implement a multifaceted approach that combines a variety of online channels. Contact us today to transform your digital presence and connect with your prospective customers.

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