Black Friday Marketing on WhatsApp: A countdown to cyber week
When the end of November approaches, inboxes around the world begin to fill up with a constant flow of deals, percentages off, and various offers. It can be a noisy time for both brand and consumer. But what if we were to tell you we know of the perfect tool to help your brand stand out from the pack and quiet the noise? What if this approach also helped you build strong connections with your customers?
WhatsApp marketing has emerged as a powerful method to turn big events into longstanding relationships between consumers and brands.
You haven’t set up WhatsApp yet?
Well, never fear, Tildei is here to help you grow your WhatsApp marketing program in plenty of time to engage your customers, new and existing, during Cyber Week (and beyond).
In this blog post, we give you step-by-step strategies and tactics to establish your WhatsApp marketing presence and prepare for a successful Cyber Week campaign that turns this one-week sales event into lifelong relationships.
Why Black Friday and Cyber Week is a Good Time to Launch WhatsApp Marketing
This time of year, your customers will check with your brand regularly. They’ll want to receive updates about deals and offers as early as possible so they can plan their holiday shopping accordingly. You’ll already have their attention, and you have a great offer to share with them at no cost to you.
Give your customers early insight into sales and offers and early access to the promotions in return for their opt-in.
This busy, high-traffic event coupled with the real-time elements of WhatsApp makes it a perfect fit for the holiday season.
Why WhatsApp is Uniquely Positioned to Help You Excel at Cyber Week
Most consumers have become fatigued by the deluge of messages in their email and text inboxes. By messaging them in a channel that isn’t overly saturated, you will make it easy for them to find the latest updates from you and your brand.
With WhatsApp you’ll be able to create a more dynamic experience with conversations instead of just one-way messages. The moment an interaction turns into a back-and-forth conversation, it creates more sticking power with the consumer. As consumers, we don’t always remember a one-off email, but we do remember conversations.
The opportunity to reply to a message and engage back with your brand ultimately gives the customer a vested interest in the relationship versus remaining a passive recipient.
Equally exciting, WhatsApp integrates directly with Facebook and Instagram Ads. When you look over your ad budget for the holiday season, you can allocate some to the action of starting a WhatsApp conversation. This not only starts a conversation with a new or existing customer in their awareness phase, but it also gains their opt-in for future messages.
WhatsApp Black Friday and Cyber Week Strategy Countdown
The countdown below gives you plenty of time to establish the new channel, grow your list, and prepare for a successful holiday season. If you find yourself with less time than the weeks mentioned, this post is still for you, just on an accelerated schedule. We’re more than happy to help craft a tailored timeline for you and help you have a successful holiday season, so contact us!
Here is the plan to get up and running with WhatsApp for Black Friday in 6 weeks (or less):
6 Weeks Before Black Friday
Set your foundations and grow your subscribers
If you have already set up your WhatsApp program, skip to ‘4 Weeks Before’. If you haven’t set up WhatsApp yet, this is where you should begin.
Establish Your Business on WhatsApp: A few different elements are needed to set up your business on WhatsApp including a business name and a phone number, but you can find all of the specific details in the Getting Started with WhatsApp blog.
Select a Business Solution Provider: A business solution provider facilitates sending and automating messages and conversations with your subscriber base, especially at scale (which will be critical for the holiday season). You can use Tildei as your business solution provider where you can build your messages and create meaningful conversations in just a matter of clicks.
Add Your Opt-in Opportunities: Now you’re ready to start building your foundational strategy and messaging. Most of your WhatsApp conversations and messages will originate from opt-in points. You’ll want to decide where you’ll have your customers opt-in (your website, in-store, through your email, social ads) and create messages that support the opt-in experience.
Create Your Welcome Message: The opt-in message and experience can be treated as your welcome campaign, or you can also develop a series of welcome messages or conversations that flow from the initial opt-in.
Black Friday and Cyber Week Focus: This is one of the best times to grow your list because it aligns with a peak moment when customers want to hear from you. Give your subscribers an exciting reason to opt-in. Offer them sneak peeks on deals or early access opportunities if they opt-in to this new channel, and apply that messaging across your opt-in points.
4 Weeks Before Black Friday
Craft your plan and prepare for the big event
Reference Your Goals for Black Friday:
- What are your Black Friday and Cyber Week business goals?
- How do you want WhatsApp to support or influence them?
Think about the goals you want to achieve overall this holiday, like subscriber growth, products purchased, and revenue generated. If you have target numbers for these goals, determine the percentage you think WhatsApp will contribute in addition.
Keep in Mind Customer Needs:
- What will be the most helpful for your customers during this holiday season?
- What kinds of questions do they often ask to facilitate their purchase?
Check with your customer service team to understand the most commonly asked questions. You can use this information to influence the content you send. Conversation content could focus on proactively sharing store opening hours, current offers available, length of the deals, return policies, or product recommendations.
Submit Template Approvals: Once you know the content of the messages you want to send, begin to submit those messages for approval. WhatsApp requires business-initiated messages to be approved before they can be sent. Check out this blog post for more details on all things templates.
Test Your Messages: Experiment and send test messages to yourself and your team. See what the messages will look like and get a better understanding of the customer flow. In the best-case scenario, your WhatsApp messages will be framed in a conversation, so test the full experience.
Start sending!: On the days leading up to Black Friday, focus message content on helping your customers become more familiar with this channel. Send an easy conversation flow or try interactive elements like video.
WhatsApp Black Friday Campaign Ideas for 4 weeks out:
- A quiz that ends in a personalized Black Friday shopping list
- A game (through back-and-forth messages) that provides customers with a promo code that they can redeem during Black Friday
2 Weeks Before Black Friday
Prime your audience and discover the messages that drive engagement
Refine Your Black Friday Cyber Week Plan: Most of the hard work is done at this point. Your foundations are set and you’re growing your list. Evaluate what’s working and what’s not and calibrate accordingly. Submit any new content through template approval.
Keep Sending Messages: You’ve likely already sent a few conversation-driving messages by now. It’s a fairly personal channel, so you don’t want to overwhelm your customer base with too many messages. You want to show your customers that you’re respectful of their opt-in. Send one to two messages each week, preparing them for the big shopping holiday.
WhatsApp Black Friday Campaign Ideas for 2 weeks out:
- Check in and ask how your customers plan to shop during Cyber Week. Ask if they plan to shop in-store or online and provide helpful tips for either. Ask what days they’re planning to shop and let them know if they’ll miss out on any deals or what they can expect.
- Start your countdown messaging to Cyber Week. Let them know which most popular items will be on sale. Help them avoid the fear of missing out by letting them plan accordingly.
- Share operational updates. Helpful information includes delivery times, store opening hours, and return policies.
Black Friday Week
Watch your plan lead to success and foster relationships for the future
Trust in Your Plan: You’ve worked hard over the past 6 weeks (or likely longer) to get to this point. Trust in your team and the plan you established. You’re venturing into a new channel that will take you to new places.
Monitor Your Program: Keep an eye on opt-ins and messages to ensure everything is working how you intended during this pivotal week. If offer amounts or dates change, update your messages accordingly.
WhatsApp Black Friday Campaign Ideas for the Week of:
- Share promotion updates: Use it as a channel to let customers know if time is running out on a specific offer or if stock is running low on a best-seller.
- Give them extra time: Treat these customers as VIPs for engaging with you in a new channel and extend to them an after-hours offer code.
- Ask how their Black Friday went: Ask a few questions to gather preferences and have a conversation. If they missed out on deals, maybe give them an offer code for the following week. If they could purchase everything they hoped, give them a post-holiday offer.
Why It’s NOT Too Late to Start WhatsApp Marketing for Black Friday
Getting started on WhatsApp only takes a few small steps, and you already have a lot of the structure in place. Gaining opt-in is as easy as adding a link to your website. You can easily turn your previous email and SMS campaigns into WhatsApp conversations.
Black Friday is a fantastic opportunity to grow a new channel because it's often the peak of customer engagement. They actively want to hear from you during this time because they don’t want to miss out. Use that to your advantage and give them something in return, like early access or sneak peeks.
2.7 billion people worldwide are actively using WhatsApp today, so it’s the perfect place to meet your customers where they are. Ready to get started marketing on WhatsApp? Join our early access today.