Blog A Comprehensive Guide to WhatsApp Newsletters

Sonakshi Deb Roy

Guess what's making waves in the world of marketing these days? Yep, you got it – WhatsApp newsletters! If you're wondering how this messaging app, famous for connecting friends and family, can work wonders for your business, this blog is what you need to get started. In this complete guide, we're diving deep to explore how WhatsApp newsletters can amplify your marketing game and take it to unprecedented heights.

Get ready for an insightful journey as we unravel the secrets, strategies, and the immense potential that WhatsApp newsletters hold for businesses looking to engage with their audience in a more personal and direct way.

From understanding the basics to mastering advanced tactics, we've got it all covered. By the end of this guide, you'll not only be a WhatsApp newsletter pro but also equipped with the knowledge to turn those chats into conversions.

What are WhatsApp Newsletters?

What exactly are WhatsApp newsletters? Imagine your regular email newsletter, but instead of landing in your customer's email inbox, it pops up right on their WhatsApp. It's like sliding into their DMs, but with valuable content instead of just another “spam” message.

Why WhatsApp, you ask? Well, for starters, it's one of the most widely used messaging apps globally. People practically live on it! Plus, it's personal – you're right there on their phones, and that's a pretty intimate space to be in. It's like having a VIP pass to your customer's digital life.

Now, let's talk about the perks. First off, it's instant. No waiting for emails to be opened; your message is right there, ready to be seen. It's also super interactive – you can include images, videos and links. Imagine sending a sneak peek of a new product or a behind-the-scenes video directly to your customers. It's like creating a buzz without even trying too hard.

And the best part? It's two-way communication. Customers can reply to your newsletter, ask questions, or give feedback. It's not just you talking to them; it's a conversation. Building that connection is golden.

Setting up WhatsApp newsletters isn't rocket science either. You can use tools like WhatsApp Business API or platforms like Peach to automate and manage your messages. It's like having a personal assistant for your marketing efforts.

So, there you have it – WhatsApp newsletters in a nutshell. It's like the secret ingredient your marketing strategy didn't know it needed.

How Is It Different from WhatsApp Broadcasts?

Think of WhatsApp Newsletters as your personalised storytelling tool and WhatsApp Broadcasts as the mass communicators. Newsletters allow you to craft engaging, content-rich messages and share them with your audience. Whether it's updates, news, or exclusive content, WhatsApp Newsletters are the perfect way to establish a connection with your customers. You can send them regularly, making it a consistent channel for communication. WhatsApp Broadcasts are like your megaphone for reaching a large audience at once. Broadcasts allow you to send a single message to multiple contacts without creating a group. It's like shouting your message to a crowd, but in a much more personalised way.

WhatsApp Broadcasts are fantastic if you need to quickly send time-sensitive information or promotions to a large audience. If you want to engage in a meaningful conversation, share in-depth content, and build a loyal following, go for WhatsApp Newsletters. The magic happens when you combine both. Use Newsletters for building relationships, sharing stories, and creating a loyal following for your business. Then, use Broadcasts strategically for announcements, flash sales, or other time-critical messages.

Remember, the key is to be authentic and provide value. Whether you're telling a story or making an announcement, your audience should feel like they're part of something special.

Biggest Challenges in Launching WhatsApp Newsletters

So, you're most probably here because you’re thinking about diving into the world of WhatsApp newsletters. That's awesome! But, as with any new venture, there are a few hurdles to leap over. 

Let's chat about the challenges you might face when launching those WhatsApp newsletters for your brand!

  1. Messaging cost and ROI\ One of the primary challenges businesses face when using WhatsApp for newsletters is the cost per message. Unlike traditional email marketing, where costs are generally associated with the size of the subscriber list, WhatsApp charges one unique business initiated message per conversation. This can quickly add up, especially for businesses with large user bases or frequent messaging schedules. \ \ Let’s understand the pricing model that WhatsApp has. While personal WhatsApp accounts remain free, WhatsApp business accounts function under the conversation pricing model. In the Conversation-based pricing, WhatsApp charges for each conversation: Business Initiated Conversation & User-Initiated Conversation. WhatsApp Conversation is a 24-hour messaging window initiated only when a business messages a user. A Conversation here starts when a business messages the user (thus initiates the Conversation) or replies to a user's message. Business responding to a user message starts a User-initiated Conversation. Business starts the conversation by sending a pre-approved template message, this starts a Business-initiated Conversation.\  \ Here are the four types of Business-initiated Conversations: 
  • Marketing Conversation - Send promotional offers, product announcements, and more to increase awareness and engagement
  • Utility Conversation - Send account updates, order updates, alerts, and more to share important information
  • Authentication Conversation - Send codes that allow your customers to securely access their accounts
  • Service - All user-initiated conversations which help customers resolve inquiries are categorised as service conversations\ \ Starting June 1, 2023, WhatsApp has new pricing for marketing and utility conversations. Marketing rates are now higher and utility lower to reflect value for people and businesses. WhatsApp now charges businesses Rs 0.3082 for every utility message while marketing messages will cost Rs 0.7265 for Indian numbers. WhatsApp charges depend on the country code of the users. While WhatsApp newsletters offer a direct line of communication to a highly engaged audience, businesses must assess whether the cost aligns with the level of engagement they receive. \ \ The per-message cost model raises questions about the sustainability of WhatsApp newsletters as a cost-effective marketing strategy. A high per-message cost may be justified if it leads to increased customer interaction, conversions, or brand loyalty. However, the challenge lies in quantifying and measuring these benefits. Businesses need to analyse user behaviour, response rates, and conversion metrics to evaluate the effectiveness of their WhatsApp newsletter campaigns. Understanding how each message contributes to the overall customer journey is essential for justifying the associated costs and optimising future campaigns. 
  1. Audience Opt-ins\ WhatsApp requires you to get audience opt-ins before you can start sending WhatsApp marketing messages to them and getting those opt-ins can be a bit of a rollercoaster. First things first, people are kind of sceptical about handing out their personal numbers these days. I mean, who can blame them? We've all been bombarded with spam calls and texts. So, convincing someone to hit that "Subscribe" button for your WhatsApp newsletter is like convincing your friend to try sushi for the first time – it takes some serious persuasion.\ \ And then there's the whole privacy thing. People are becoming more and more protective of their personal info, and rightfully so. Imagine giving out your number and suddenly receiving texts at odd hours about who knows what! The struggle is real.Plus, there's the challenge of making your opt-in process. If it's not a quick, painless process, you risk losing potential subscribers faster than you can say "unsubscribe."
  2. Length Of the Message\ Let's talk about the character limit, which is the 4096-character rule per message. It's like WhatsApp is telling us, "Keep it short and sweet, or don't bother!" Sure, brevity is the soul of wit, but what if you have more to say? What if you're bursting with updates, news, and just general information to share? Well, that can be a struggle. You find yourself playing a game of literary Tetris, trying to squeeze in your thoughts without breaking the character bank. You start typing away, pouring your heart into each word, only to realise that you're fast approaching the dreaded character limit. It's like hitting a wall mid-sentence, and you're forced to make some tough decisions. Which details do you sacrifice? It's like playing editor with your own thoughts, and let me tell you, it's not always a friendly negotiation.\ \ Then there's the issue of maintaining that personal touch. WhatsApp is all about the intimacy of one-on-one communication. But when you're confined to a limited number of characters, expressing yourself fully becomes a tightrope walk. And let's not forget the struggle of trying to create a cohesive narrative with a character limit in place.

How to grow businesses effectively with WhatsApp Newsletters

So how do you actually make WhatsApp newsletters work for your business? Don’t worry, because we're about to spill the beans on the secrets to growing your business effectively with these newsletters. It's like unlocking a treasure trove of tips and tricks that will have your business soaring to new heights. Let’s see some proven strategies on how to effectively leverage WhatsApp newsletters to supercharge your business growth\ \ How to Reduce Cost

  • Craft Clever Content: The first rule of cost-cutting – make every word count! Craft concise, engaging content that delivers your message without unnecessary fluff. Keep it snappy, interesting, and most importantly, valuable to your readers. Quality over quantity.
  • Time Your Messages Wisely: Don't let your messages get lost in the digital abyss. Time your newsletters strategically to ensure maximum visibility. Analyse when your audience is most active on WhatsApp, and schedule your messages accordingly. This way, you make the most impact without bombarding them.
  • Explore Automation Tools: Invest in automation tools to streamline your newsletter process. There are plenty of affordable options out there that can help you schedule messages, manage subscribers, and even analyse performance. Time saved is money saved!
  • Grow Organically: While it may be tempting to buy those subscriber lists, growing your audience organically pays off in the long run. Engaged subscribers are more likely to stick around, reducing the need for constant acquisition efforts and associated costs.
  • Monitor and Adjust: Keep a close eye on your analytics. Monitor the performance of your newsletters and adjust your strategy accordingly. If certain types of content aren't resonating, pivot. This proactive approach helps you optimise your efforts and resources continuously.
  • High Value Purchases: Sending a newsletter through WhatsApp is way more budget-friendly for high value purchases. When you're dealing with high-value purchases,  WhatsApp newsletters are the most cost-effective way to market your products. No more worrying about shelling out big bucks for print materials, postage, or airtime. With WhatsApp, you can send newsletters directly to your audience's phones without spending a dime on distribution.
  • Acquire Once and Retain: Acquire your audience once through paid channels and retain them with WhatsApp newsletters and content. Invest in paid channels like social media ads, Google Ads, or influencer marketing to bring in those potential customers and once you've got them interested, it's time to make sure they stick around. That's where WhatsApp newsletters shine. Encourage your users to subscribe to your newsletter for exclusive content, early access, or special discounts. Create a sense of community. Use your newsletters to start a conversation. The more they feel connected, the more likely they are to stay.
  • Effective Audience Segmentation: By categorising your audience based on their interests, behaviours, or demographics, you can tailor your message to hit the bullseye every time. Whether you're reaching out to fitness fanatics, beauty gurus, or tech enthusiasts, segmentation ensures your message speaks directly to their interests. Making your WhatsApp newsletters far more effective, instead of just sending a blast to anyone and everyone.
  • WhatsApp Forms: Instead of sending out newsletters blindly, use WhatsApp Forms to conduct surveys. Ask your audience what they're interested in, what they're looking for, and tailor your content accordingly. Ever wished you could magically know which leads are hot and which are, well, not so hot? WhatsApp Forms to the rescue! By incorporating smart questions into your forms, you can identify the cream of the crop. No more shooting in the dark – now you can target your campaigns precisely where they'll make the most impact. Once you have qualified your lead, create a series of brief, engaging messages that leave an impression without overwhelming your audience.
Overcoming Content Challenges
  • Crafting Crisp Content: Start by crafting engaging content that speaks to the point. Keep your messages concise and impactful. Trim the fat and let your words shine!
  • A/B Testing: Don't be afraid to experiment. Test different formats, messaging styles, and content types. Pay attention to what works best for which of your audience and tweak your approach accordingly
  • Multi-Part Messaging: Break down your content into bite-sized chunks. Send a series of messages to maintain the flow of your narrative. It's like storytelling in instalments, keeping your audience eagerly awaiting the next episode
  • Product Catalogues: WhatsApp marketing tools like Peach lets you deliver your Product Catalogues in the form of stories directly to your customer’s inbox. The format looks exactly like Instagram stories and help you overcome the content limitations on WhatsApp
  • Teaser Technique: Think of your WhatsApp newsletter as a movie trailer. Create teasers that leave your audience wanting more. Use a cliffhanger or a compelling snippet that encourages them to explore further on your website
  • Link Magic: WhatsApp may limit the characters, but it doesn't put a cap on links. Use this to your advantage! Share links to your blog, website, or external content where subscribers can dive deeper into the juicy details.
How to Increase Opt-ins
  • Craft an Irresistible Value Proposition: Think of your opt-in request as a conversation starter rather than a transaction. Clearly communicate the value users will gain by subscribing to your WhatsApp newsletter. Whether it's exclusive discounts, insider information, or entertaining content, make it something they simply can't resist.
  • Timing is Everything: Imagine receiving a surprise party invitation just when you're in the middle of something important – not ideal, right? The same goes for opt-in requests. Choose the right moment to pop the question. Consider doing it after a positive interaction, like a successful purchase or engaging content consumption. Timing is the secret sauce to increasing your chances of a positive response.
  • Simplify the Opt-In Process: Nobody likes a complicated process. Keep it simple and user-friendly. A streamlined opt-in process increases the likelihood of users subscribing. Utilise QR codes, clickable links, or even a direct invitation within your app or website. The less effort required, the better!
  • Engage, Don't Spam: Respect your users' space and time. Bombarding them with opt-in requests can lead to annoyance rather than engagement. Instead, focus on creating engaging content that naturally encourages users to want more. Quality over quantity, always!
  • Incentivise Opt-Ins with Rewards: Who doesn't love a good incentive? Sweeten the deal by offering special perks for opting in – it could be a first-time discount, access to exclusive content, or a chance to win exciting prizes. The more enticing the offer, the higher the opt-in rate!
  • Be Transparent: In an era where privacy is paramount, be upfront about how you'll use the information. Assure users that their data is safe and that you won't inundate them with spam. Transparency builds trust and encourages more users to take that leap of faith.

To summarise, WhatsApp Newsletters have become an indispensable way to connect with customers, market your products and grow your business swiftly. And with all the tips listed above I am sure you will be able to get the best out of your WhatsApp Newsletters.