Instant Messengers: Why to Include Them into Your Marketing Strategy
Messengers are tools with which you can easily communicate and transmit information today. Their advantages are not limited to messages, calls, files and stickers. A big plus of instant messengers is the ability to promote goods and services among users. That is why there is a new direction for digital marketing — messenger marketing.
Although it bears a similarity to long-established email marketing, there is a fundamental difference between the two. Email is used for business correspondence and it has long been undermined by all kinds of spam. Messengers, however, are used for personal communication, so users respond more quickly to advertising messages.
If you are still unsure whether you need to utilize this marketing channel — scroll down and find out why it is vital for your cannabis business.
Why do you need to consider advertising through messengers?
You can use messengers for promoting cannabis-related campaigns.
Messengers are the perfect fit for almost every kind of business. But when it comes to the cannabis market, they are even more useful since it is hard to promote your cannabis-related company using traditional approaches such as SMM.
Messengers come in handy when you need to:
- Advise customers. Emailing is long and inefficient. Using messengers such as Telegram, WhatsApp or Viber, a client can ask a question and get a quick answer, with an additional audio or video file if necessary. More and more often, a chatbot conducts a consultation at any time. This saves employees time and allows you not to spend money on a call center.
- Notify your customers directly. You can give your customers important messages, including information about promotions, discounts and various changes in the work of your company. Instant notification increases both sales and brand loyalty as well as creating a trusting relationship between the seller and the buyer.
- Consolidation of customers. Gather your customers in one place. It’s easier to use a messenger, because the email will most likely be ignored and they may not notice the message in the news feed of social networks.
- Sell to customers. All of the above actions indirectly help boost sales. Instant messengers can be used to create a direct impact on the client. For example, Telegram allows you to create chatbots that will offer users products and accept payment.
- Monetize. Not only can the messenger become a platform for advertising but also a way to earn money. Create a channel or group, develop it to gain the most subscribers and then sell advertising slots. Or you could make your channel paid for. But when doing this it is important that the information on your channel is as useful and necessary as possible to the user.
Let’s consider the capabilities of some particular well-liked messengers:
Viber is one of the most popular messengers with a variety of features.
It provides a wide range of resources to promote your business. Its main tools include:
- Public accounts (communities). They allow you to view community content. Users who first logged into your public account are its guests. Having become interested, a client can become a reader. They will receive notifications of new entries in the account.
- Public chats (included in public accounts). This service allows users to participate in conversations on topics of interest to them. The content posted in the chat is available to everyone.
- Stickers. The most important Viber messenger tool. The branded sticker pack can significantly increase awareness of your brand among your users. It’s very simple: you create branded stickers then users get the opportunity to download them for free by signing up for a public account or chat in exchange. The opportunity to place them, of course, is paid.
Every second active user of this messenger sends stickers. Stickers have become an ideal option for native advertising. They can act just like viral ads. A user downloads your branded sticker pack and distributes it. Perfect for spreading your brand identity.
WhatsApp is the most widely used messenger, so you can reach more people with it.
This messenger is one of the most popular in the world but comes with the most stringent rules. Officially, mass mailing of ads through WhatsApp is prohibited, even to subscribers. WhatsApp has two valid methods: the WhatsApp Business App and WhatsApp Business API.
- WhatsApp Business App
This method is suitable for communicating with a small audience, as it limits you to sending messages to 256 contacts. You can connect a chatbot that will welcome and introduce the product at the start.
- WhatsApp Business API
A way for global advertising in the messenger. With a subscription to the messenger, you have the opportunity to launch targeted ads on Facebook and set up a chatbot that will welcome users and consistently introduce your product. Similarly to Facebook Messenger, you have the opportunity to respond to users within 24 hours from the moment of the last answer, including making promotional offers.
Each delivered message is charged separately, but within the 24-hour window; communication with subscribers is free.
Telegram is great for creating bots and auto-funnels.
This messenger offers similar capabilities for creating auto-funnels and chatbots. Messages in it come from the bot. You can create it for free through the official Bot Helper in Telegram — Bot Father.
In order to attract an audience to it, you can give a link to the bot itself or add it to any of the messenger platforms and offer a subscription via widgets.
Telegram allows you to send a series of consecutive messages within any given period, segment the audience, automatically issue information and use any advantages of instant messenger marketing. Restrictions are imposed only on prohibited activities and spam mailings. This messenger really covers a very wide range of possibilities, so if you select it as an advertising channel for your business, you can utilize the following perks:
- online orders;
- personal assistant;
- customer feedback processing;
- team communication and coordination;
- product promotion;
- additional traffic for landing;
- increase in brand awareness;
- round-the-clock customer support;
- additional channel for processing payments.
How to choose the right messenger for advertising your business
It's good to know the pros and cons of every messenger to choose the best variant.
In choosing a proper messenger for your needs, you should not rely solely on general statistics of popularity. Keep in mind:
- Use the messenger that your target audience is using
- Focus on messengers where customers can ask you something directly
- Ease of use and accessibility for you
So, for example, the official WhatsApp Business API has a high entry threshold, therefore, despite the popularity of the messenger, it is not suitable for everyone. Test different options or immediately connect all the messengers to the widget for the site to understand where your customers go to most often, then optimize your work with the help of auto-funnels and chatbots in the most popular messenger for your customers.
How to measure the effectiveness of advertising in messengers?
Cross-cutting analytics can help you optimize budgets: using them in your work you will see quality indicators for each traffic channel and audience segment. Thanks to this, you can analyze whether your funds are being used effectively to reach your goals. But it’s not enough just to configure and integrate it into your business, you need to understand how to analyze it and which KPI to focus on. In messengers, the main quality indicators can be represented as:
- Subscription/chatbot user price
- OR (Open rate) — openness of messages in the newsletter (in %)
- CR (Conversion Rate) — Making a click as a key action (following the link, replying to the newsletter)
- CPL — the cost of the target action of the user (for example, sending a request)
These indicators can be calculated for each group of recipients, for each segment of the audience (by creating different advertisements for each of the groups). And based on them, the main performance indicators are already considered:
- CAC – the cost of attracting a client
- ROI – return on investment (for each individual channel)
- LTV – customer lifetime
The main indicator of the effectiveness of the marketing channel is the LTV/CAC indicator. This is the ratio of profit from one client to the amount of funds spent on their attraction.
People use messengers in their everyday life, so why not use them for marketing campaigns.
In 2020, instant messengers are not just a trend but a standard. Sending customized templates to email, using one-way texts or even calling a customer in 2020 is simply not the thing to do. Personalization is the end of mass advertising. The client will not tolerate a business which invades their personal space with advertising. Messengers laid the foundation for an era of segmentation accurate to each client.
Variable auto-funnels, chatbots that make personalized offers to customers based on their past actions, notifications of purchases, delivery — all this has already been successfully used by marketers in instant messengers. Therefore, if you want your cannabis business to boost market performance, try to consider this trendy marketing channel while developing your overall digital strategy.