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Community marketing has become a necessity in today's complicated digital landscape. Today, companies need to showcase their products & services, build their brand, find & retain clients, and provide support for current clients. A strong community will boost all of these. While community marketing is often associated with social media platforms, WhatsApp is quickly growing in popularity and is just as viable for businesses to use. Even though WhatsApp has become a popular platform that's being used by over 2 billion users, its community culture is something that's often overlooked. That's why we wanted to highlight WhatsApp communities and show how businesses can use them to their advantage.
What are WhatsApp Communities?
Introduced in November 2021, the WhatsApp community feature helps people & businesses communicate with a large group of users efficiently. Since WhatsApp groups only allow 256 users, the platform wanted a feature that enhances WhatsApp groups & helps it compete with its competitors (Telegram & Discord) that enabled users to create larger groups with more people. The feature expands on WhatsApp groups as it allows businesses to combine different groups and share their opinions on various topics. Therefore, a community create an environment that is conducive to healthy user interactions & discussions. On the other hand, companies can use communities to engage with a large group of customers efficiently & also build a strong brand presence across different customer segments.
Suggested read: WhatsApp broadcasts vs groups: Which is best?
How to create WhatsApp Communities
WhatsApp community is a feature that is in the beta stage and has not yet been rolled out to the public. Based on the initial reports, we can confirm that users can create communities using the following steps:
- Click on the ‘Communities’ tab.
- Select ‘Start your Community’.
- Enter the relevant name & profile picture to create the community.
- In the Community window, you can either ‘Add existing groups’ or ‘Create new group’.
- Once the groups have been added, you can start sending announcements to all groups.
To add a new admin,
- Press ‘Options’ at the top-left of the Community window
- Select ‘View Members’ & choose the relevant contact.
- Press the ‘Make Admin’ button.
WhatsApp communities vs Groups vs Broadcast
Both WhatsApp groups & broadcasts are existing features that allow users to communicate with a group of peers. While groups & broadcasts facilitate communications with smaller groups of people, communities allow WhatsApp users to interact with a larger group much like Telegram’s Channels & Discord’s Servers. In addition to this fundamental difference, we have outlined other differences based on available information.
Suggested read: How to send WhatsApp Broadcast: A guide for 2022
Advantages of WhatsApp communities
Even though WhatsApp communities are in the beta phase, they have the capability to provide a host of benefits to businesses. The following are some of the potential advantages of communities.
A WhatsApp community can allow businesses to communicate with people in multiple groups and notify people across different segments. This allows businesses to reach a wider audience more efficiently and effectively than traditional approaches.
Suggested read: How to send WhatsApp notifications for Woo-Commerce orders
For businesses that are looking to grow beyond geographical and demographic segments, communities can become their ticket to success. Since communities are a collection of groups, exploring & interacting with community members can help them increase a user’s engagement with their business.
Brand Exposure & Trust-Building
Businesses that have genuine interactions with community users can become a voice of trust in the community. This allows them to build trust & loyalty in the community in a fast way without having to spend a lot of time & effort.
Since WhatsApp Communities allow up to 32 people to connect through WhatsApp video & audio calls, it allows businesses to connect with a larger group of customers. This allows businesses to become more familiar with their audience, learn more about them and offer them products/services of which they’re not aware of.
Since WhatsApp Communities support rich media messages (images/videos) & emojis, businesses can use them to deliver product/service information in an engaging manner. In addition, communities also allow larger file transfers (up to 2GB), which allows them to add user manuals & other relevant files.
Suggested read: How To Create A Click-To-WhatsApp Ad Campaign (In a few steps)
7 ways businesses can use WhatsApp communities
Now that we’ve seen the potential advantages of WhatsApp communities, we would like to showcase how businesses can use communities to increase their reach & revenues.
First & foremost, communities help businesses market their products to a large group of customers across different sectors. By partnering with a good WhatsApp community, business owners can gain access to a large pool of potential customers that are interested in their brand, product or domain. Therefore, this approach can be used to improve brand awareness and drive engagement in a targeted audience.
If businesses create WhatsApp communities to cover all their customer segments, they can instantly notify their entire customer base about the launch of a new product or service. They can even host a Q&A session to answer any questions from the community to increase the chances of better conversion.
Community Events & Outreach
By partnering with a WhatsApp community that covers a geographical region, businesses can quickly inform customers across the region about the latest community events & outreach programs. This allows them to reach their target audience and spread awareness about the events & programs.
Product Safety Notifications & Recalls
In the event of product deficiencies or any unforeseen safety issues, businesses can post a series of warning messages to notify users about the issue & take appropriate steps to prevent it from happening again. They can also issue an instant recall notification through communities to help them organize product callbacks better.
Holiday Promotions & Deals
Business owners can leverage community discussions & participation to make their customers aware of the latest promotions & deals that they’re offering to their target audience. This helps them increase the reach & conversions during busy holiday seasons.
Try out the templates for WhatsApp promotional messages!
Internally, large enterprises can create a community that covers different branches & regions. Through this community, they can raise support tickets to either individual people or branches effectively. This helps them streamline their processes & address issues at an early stage.
Critical Business Notifications
Relocating your office or changing your website domain? You can quickly inform all of your customers about critical business notifications to ensure that you don’t lose any customers during this transition. You can also inform about business emergencies that arise due to natural calamities & other external factors.
Do you need a WhatsApp Business account to create a WhatsApp community?
WhatsApp Community is a feature that covers all WhatsApp users & groups, therefore one need not have a WhatsApp Business account to create a WhatsApp community. Communities can be created & managed by normal WhatsApp users.
Boost your marketing on WhatsApp with WhatsApp communities
Based on what we’ve seen in this article (and the thousands more that you could find on WhatsApp Community), we can clearly see that the community feature provides a unique marketing edge to businesses. Specifically, WhatsApp Community helps businesses create a stronger brand presence, reach a larger audience, improve their sales & drive engagement with a larger customer base. Therefore, we hope that businesses leveraging the community feature will create larger revenues for themselves.
Do more with Gallabox’s WhatsApp automation solution
Incorporating WhatsApp automation into your existing communication & marketing workflows will make sure that you take advantage of WhatsApp Community when it rolls out. If you’re a business owner that wants to gain a competitive edge through WhatsApp communities, you need to partner with a good WhatsApp Business Solution Provider like Gallabox to maximize the power of your campaign. Our experienced team help you create & manage WhatsApp chatbots, groups & broadcasts better. Sign up now for a free trial to create customized WhatsApp automation solutions that will help you grow your brand & revenue.
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