According to a new study, 53% of people in the UK and France who use mobile messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp has interacted with a company via mobile messaging, or is open to doing so as long as they can block brands they are not interested in. But to avoid a consumer backlash, companies need to ensure messaging interactions are highly personalized and responsive.
The findings come from Kenshoo, a provider of agile marketing, which commissioned a poll of 2,000 consumers split equally between the UK and France to explore the growing marketing opportunity presented by mobile messaging.
While messaging apps have until now been largely used for conversing with friends and family, it seems there is a willingness among consumers to use messaging to communicate with brands. Over half (51%) of messaging app users in Kenshoo’s study see messaging as faster and more immediate than email interactions with companies, while 48% feel it is going to be less hassle than voice calls.
According to the Kenshoo study, consumers are receptive to a variety of promotional interactions via messaging apps. Of those who are open to using messaging to communicate with businesses, 46% said they would be tempted by the prospect of receiving exclusive deals and offers, 25% said they would use messaging to respond to ads, 35% to participate in games and competitions in which they could win prizes. 24% said they would like to use messaging to receive updates on products and services they have expressed an interest in.
Messaging app users pointed to two other advantages of contacting businesses via mobile messaging:
- 15% liked the idea of setting up group interactions with brands – this might involve discussions around joint purchases, such as researching and booking a holiday or buying furnishings for a home or bringing in friends to comment on fashion buys
- 33% liked the fact that messaging apps retain the complete history of any conversations with a company so it is easily available in the app – no need to search through emails, or notes from telephone calls.