WhatsApp can be far more than just a text messaging service. It can also be a highly effective business communications and marketing tool.
In fact, WhatsApp is such an effective means of communication that it can actually be used as the basis for certain businesses. Some entrepreneurs are designing and creating companies based on the kind of instant connectivity between customers and companies that WhatsApp can provide.
News stories indicate that successful WhatsApp-based businesses are now operating in countries such as India and the United Kingdom. It might only be a matter of time before such enterprises start appearing the United States and Canada.
Some Examples of Successful WhatsApp-Based Businesses
Service businesses are among the best WhatsApp-oriented enterprises because the solution improves contact between the business and the customer. It can increase the level of customer contact and enhance customer service.
Successful WhatsApp service businesses include:
- Concierge services. In Mumbai, India, a company called Russsh bills itself as “your personal assistant.” Russsh allows people to book a wide variety of tasks directly on WhatsApp. For example, a person could use it to hire a babysitter or to contact somebody that would pick up laundry or do simple tasks such as grocery shopping, assistance for senior citizens, and almost anything else you need done. A person can use WhatsApp to instantly contact an assistant, who will come to perform the service.
- One variation on this service would be to offer handyman, house cleaning, and other services on an emergency basis over WhatsApp. A person that needed help around the house immediately, such as somebody to clean up a mess, could send out a message for help.
- Courier and delivery services. In today’s hectic world, a lot of people simply do not have the time to pick stuff up. Russsh lets people contact a driver or a bicyclist, who will pick up flowers, baked goods, flowers, food, documents, or anything else. For example, a lawyer could contact a person with a motorcycle to take a document that needs to be signed across town. Small businesses such as bakeries and restaurants could use the service to reach new customers.
- Custom jewelry and tailoring. In London, jeweler Rare Pink has successfully sold expensive, custom diamond rings by putting videos of them on WhatsApp, The Telegraph reported. High-end tailor Robert Revilla also uses WhatsApp to keep in contact with clients. Any business that does custom work could use WhatsApp to send pictures or videos of the work to its customers and potential customers.
A tailor could use WhatsApp to send video of the alterations she was making to a customer. A cake decorator could send pictures of a cake and so on. That way the client could know that the job was going properly.
- Driving. Many people are familiar with apps like Uber and Lyft that allow a person to summon a vehicle and driver on demand. A driver could cut out the middle man—Uber and Lyft take a percentage of the fare—and maintain direct contact with passengers via WhatsApp. A person could advertise specialized driving services such as hauling children to school, transporting senior citizens, or delivering documents on WhatsApp.
- Food delivery. Fewer and fewer people are cooking for themselves these days, which is greatly increasing the demand for takeout. Many people want something besides pizza or Chinese. A person could contract with local restaurants to deliver food directly to customers’ homes.
- Marketing. Not everybody likes to market or promote their products. A person that is proficient at marketing could set up a WhatsApp marketing agency to promote businesses or services directly over the app.
- Personal shopper. Not everybody likes to shop, and some people do not have the time. You could organize a personal shopping service in which customers send shopping lists to you via WhatsApp. You would then buy the items or pick them up from the store and take them to the customer. Some major retailers like Walmart and the Kroger supermarkets are making this business easier by offering click n’ pull services in which a customer sends in an order that one of their employees pulls off the shelves and prepares. The personal shopper could simply pick up such orders and take them to the customer.
- Dog walker/pet sitter. Dogs need to be walked all the time. One way to distinguish yourself from the crowd is to become an on-demand dog walker that comes anytime Fido needs to take a walk. WhatsApp could let pet owners call you anytime.
- Repair and service businesses. People often need repair services such as plumbing on a moment’s notice. The instant communication provided by WhatsApp can enable a person to summon a professional such as a plumber or a computer technician at a moment’s notice.
- Hauling. A person that owns a truck or van could start a hauling service, for example, to come to haul heavy items such as furniture or to get rid of junk quickly.
- Catering. Many people need custom meals or food prepared quickly and delivered. A caterer could use WhatsApp to instantly receive menu requests, prepare the food, and have it delivered fast via a driver. A variation on this could be a personal chef that prepares meals for a number of customers in a particular area and has them delivered.
The number of potential businesses that could leverage the power of solutions like WhatsApp is incredible. Instant messaging allows instant communication, which can create a wide variety of moneymaking skills.
If you want to start such a business, sit and brainstorm then try to think of something that you like to do. If you enjoy shopping, cooking, walking dogs, or driving, why not try to make some money while having fun at that activity?
The main ingredient needed for a successful WhatsApp business is imagination. If you can be the first to think up such an enterprise and implement it in your area, you could give yourself a new stream of income. New communications such as WhatsApp are always business opportunities for those willing to take advantage of them.