The fraction cost which users are required to pay for the popular internet messenger—WhatsApp has now been discontinued by the company. In other words, the minor charge of $0.99 per year is no longer implementable for anyone.
The popular messaging app had started charging a nominal user fee since the last few years. Now onwards, users can access the messenger completely free of cost.
The news gets weightier as the company also states that this small subscription fee is not getting replaced with fee for ads. So, how will the monetization of the most popular messenger happen? Well, the owner company Facebook is contemplating integration with the app and also innovative marketing tie-ups to help companies deliver messages to the user in the text message itself.
In this case, a text notification by a bank on your transaction can also be handled directly by WhatsApp. Given the huge popularity and database of Facebook users, this partnership strategy might just be very effective. However, the clear intent is to make WhatsApp more useful to the users.
Currently, WhatsApp has 1 billion users, so with this new strategy of waving the fee will only add more users to the internet messaging platform.
The Facebook-planned service hopes to generate more utility value through services to the business. It will be further customized since you may choose to communicate with business and organisations which are important to you.
Interacting on WhatsApp messages to transact on airline booking, or receiving an update on banking transaction will only make the service more accessible. By not sticking to third party ads will only make it a no-disturbance internet platform. It will be a clear focus on the utility of the product.
Take a scenario in which you can have a conversation with an e-commerce store, or even your neighborhood grocery store. Even a skin care consultant available for a simple conversation on WhatsApp will be great PR-value add for the company. If all this can be facilitated at the convenience of using your mobile, it will be a win-win situation for the customer and the marketing stakeholders, both.
While such a business scenario will benefit small-time retailers, it will also benefit big companies who can adopt a consumer pull strategy, then a push strategy. More innovatively in the entrepreneur world, there can be different conversation centres around state-of-the-art customer service like receiving updates on their order in transit, or anything else related to their shipping status update. Seems like, the social giant has a lot more to leverage on the internet for the benefit of its users.